Sometimes it can be challenging to navigate the rider fitness arena. It seems like there’s always a new ‘groundbreaking’ diet that’s publicized in the media. And so as responsible riders we want to maintain a healthy lifestyle, and we shlep off to the bookstores, then we shlep off to the grocery stores, and then a week or two later we realize this diet is no different than the one we tried in the twenty years ago—which sadly, didn’t work then…and probably won’t work now.
But we all know that every diet is paired with a good exercise regimen. One that is flexible with our schedules, keeps us engaged, and more importantly, gets us results.
And bonus points to those workouts that help make your ride in the saddle that much more enjoyable.
Pilates for Riders is a great book to help you align your spin and control your core to give you a perfect position in the saddle.
Margaret Freeman, Associate Editor of Horse Journal magazine, shares her thoughts on Pilates for Riders:
If you’re a rider, you’ve got to keep yourself fit, particularly if you ride only one horse a day, including a healthy weight. Physical activities that may help include Pilates, yoga and Alexander Technique.
Pilates works well for riders because it strengthens core muscles (the abs), which in turn protects the spine and back and increases flexibility. Lessons at a Pilates studio can start at $20 for group classes and run $60 or more for individual instruction. There are several excellent DVDs/books written specifically for riders available at tack shops and online. Once you learn the techniques, you can combine daily walks with 10 to 30 minutes of Pilates on a DVD and stop losing ground to your younger riding friends.
The author of this book is a British dressage trainer and Pilates instructor. She gives a clear, detailed explanation of how Pilates is ideal for riders, to “align your spine and control your core for a perfect position.” The book distinguishes itself in sorting out specific problems in rider biomechanics and then offering solutions. It’s also richly illustrated.
This book is a good choice for anyone interested in a clear explanation of Pilates. Anyone starting Pilates should also consider classes with a qualified instructor and not just try to learn everything from a book. Some hands-on help will enhance the use of this book and, indeed, Pilates itself.