Some habits are really useful. Other habits can be detrimental to ourselves and our horses. In this episode, you'll learn how your habits of movement and posture can contribute to stiffness, back pain, imbalances and even spinal damage!
You'll learn simple ways to break out of your habitual, unconscious routine and develop greater self awareness. With improved awareness, you'll move with more ease, comfort and choice. And when you explore non-habitual movements with your horse, your horse can become more flexible and balanced too. You'll also find out how to get my FREE videos. These unmounted exercises can help liberate you from harmful movement habits and improve your seat, position and balance on your horse. Effortlessly!
Podcast Episode #2 of Easier Movement, Happier Horses:
Hello and welcome. I hope you're doing great today. Well, in this episode, we're going to be talking about your habits and I don't mean habits like...
Welcome to Easier Movement, Happier Horses. I'm Mary Debono, your movement and mindset coach. If you'd like to have flexible, balanced movement or relaxed, confident mindset, and a joyful connection with your horse, you're in the right place. I can't wait to share what I've learned over the past 30 years of helping improve the performance and partnership of horses and their humans.
Thank you so much for being here. Now. Let's dive in Hello and welcome to easier movement, happier horses. I'm Mary Debono and I'm so glad you're here. My goal in this podcast is to help you discover how you and your horse could have balanced fluid movement or relaxed mind, and a joyful connection with each other. And one of the ways that I do that I help people get there is to take every day routine things that they do,
like leading their horse, grooming their horse, tacking up their horse, and do them in such a way that it actually stimulates...
I stared at the phone in my hand.
Did I hear that right?
"Excuse me, did you say, 'yogurt?' You can't come to your brother's memorial service because you have YOGURT?"
"Yeah, I did. You know how some people have animals? And some people have plants? Well, I have yogurt.
"And I can't leave it unattended. It's a starter culture."
This was either the lamest or the very BEST excuse I'd ever heard.
I was glad that Keith, the guy on the other end of the phone, couldn't see my expression.
I had called to invite him to his only sibling's memorial service.
But he wasn't coming. Apparently, he couldn't leave his yogurt.
Money wasn't the issue. I already told him I'd take care of his airfare and hotel.
The truth is, Keith had never really liked his brother.
They hadn't gotten along since they were teenagers.
Knowing all that, I still wanted them to reconcile.
Even though one had died.
I wanted Keith to think fondly of his deceased brother. To have some...
Resting heart rate: 53. This healthy metric is due, in large part, to my personal trainer. But why did I, a female in my 50’s, hire a buff, 22-year-old dude to help me reach my fitness goals?
Well, there are the obvious reasons. For one, he’s easy on the eyes. As we run shoulder-to-shoulder, I can’t help but sneak the occasional glance at his muscular physique. If he notices, he never says anything.
Besides the superficial reasons, there are other benefits to working out with my guy, who I’ll call “BD,” since I didn’t get his written permission to include his name here.
First off, I don’t enjoy going to a gym. Never have. But put me out in nature, and I’m in heaven. BD is more than happy to exercise in the fresh air. That’s a big plus. We meet three miles from my home and we run and hike through the local hills and trails. Living in Southern California, the weather is...
Go grab two polo wraps, standing bandages or even a couple of hand towels out of your linen closet.
Then lie down on the floor and join Mary in a short, super effective exercise to activate your deep core muscles.
You'll learn how to both relax your back AND get stronger and more coordinated all at the same time!
As always, do only what's easy, comfortable and safe for you to do. Less is more!
If you'd like to improve even further, go grab Mary's FREE rider masterclass. You'll learn how to have a more balanced, independent seat - effortlessly. Don't delay. Your horse is waiting for you!
Part 1 – The Rider’s Habits
There’s one tool that I’ve seen help equestrians more than any other. It can help riders successfully navigate challenging situations with their horses. It can also help equestrians achieve long-term goals such as: improving riding skill, enhancing equine athleticism and strengthening the horse-human connection.
In short, it’s the best thing I’ve found for achieving physical and emotional harmony with your horse.
Are you curious about the tool I’m referring to? Good! The tool we all need is just that. Curiosity.
Since you’re reading this post, I’m guessing that you’re already a curious equestrian. You’re interested in helping your horse feel better in mind and body. But like all skills, we can become more adept at using curiosity.
In this post and the next, I’ll share how you can use curiosity to help yourself and your horses move and feel better than ever.
Let me start...
***Important note about the video: Please be gentle! Your pressure should be VERY LIGHT and the movements should be subtle "suggestions." Never use force. Keep your hands and shoulders soft and relaxed.***
Don’t you love when something good comes out of something bad?
A number of years ago, my client Suzanne had a bay Morgan gelding with a suspensory injury.
Despite several months of veterinary care, farrier attention and TLC, the 12-year-old gelding was still off.
What ended up helping the horse was surprising.
Here’s what happened.
Suzanne asked me to give her horse, whose name is Bravo, a hands-on session.
I knew that helping the Morgan move more easily through his rib cage could alleviate stress on his front legs.
Less strain on his fore legs meant that he’d have a better chance of recovering from his suspensory injury.
But we had a small problem. Bravo wouldn’t...
It’s not just runners and other elite athletes who suffer from tight hamstrings and sore, stiff backs. Even among people of varying fitness levels, it seems that many people struggle with tight muscles and stiffness.
And it may come as a surprise to you that stretching is not the answer. In fact, studies have shown that stretching can actually weaken muscles.
Dr. Moshe Feldenkrais, the originator of the Feldenkrais Method, spoke about the pitfalls of stretching decades ago, and now science has validated his teachings*. Dr. Moshe Feldenkrais espoused a more intelligent, comfortable approach that respects the innate wisdom of the body.
His movement lessons enhance awareness, improve overall functioning and create a sense of well-being.
I invite you to explore the movement lesson below and notice how you can easily improve! Please go slowly and do not do any movement that is uncomfortable for you. Consult with a qualified health...
A young woman named Terra was suffering from pain and tension in her upper back, shoulders and neck. She often felt hunched over and uncomfortable.
How I helped her may surprise you.
Since Terra is an equestrian, I invited her to sit in her saddle.
I asked her if she felt balanced and level. Was her weight evenly distributed over both seat bones? Terra replied that she felt that she was sitting with a little more weight on her right seat bone, and she wanted to shift more weight onto her left side to even herself out.
But looking at Terra, I could see that her weight was already concentrated on her left side, not her right. Check out the photo above to see for yourself.
Do you see how Terra’s right ribs are scrunched together? This makes the right side of Terra’s torso shorter than her left side. Can you see how her uneven rib cage has thrown her weight onto the left side of her pelvis? To confirm, I...