In yoga Chair Pose is a standing balance pose that strengthens the lower body while stretching the upper back. This posture invigorates and energizes the whole body.
In horse back riding, practicing two-point position (aka Chair Pose) will help you become aware of your leg position, increase knee and ankle suppleness, as well as improve the flexibility in your legs and ankles.
With more flexible legs and ankles, and with the correct alignment of your legs, your leg aides will be better able to communicate effectively with your horse.
Chair Pose will be started from a seated position then you will stand with a focus on balance and alignment.
Let’s get started!
Find yourself seated evenly on your seat bones with your back straight, shoulders square and head normal. Picture someone pulling a string out of the top of your head.
While inhaling to a count of four, raise your arms out to the side and up above your head.
On your exhale (again to the count of four) rise up and balance over your feet. Be aware of the alignment of your shoulder, hips and heels.
Hold the pose for another inhale (to the count of four) and exhale (to the count of four).
On the next inhale stretch your arms as far upwards as you can while feeling the strength in your back and legs.
Exhale (to the count of four) and lower yourself down.
You can practice this pose any time. For a deeper stretch of your calves, stand on the edge of a step and lower your heels. You will really feel it! This is a great exercise to help you keep your weight in your heels and your stirrup on your foot where it belongs.
Practice this in the saddle too! If you fall back, your legs are too far forward. If you fall forward, your legs are not under you. Keep practicing until you can stay there in a balanced, properly aligned position.
You can learn this pose and 11 others when you purchase the DVD or Digital downloads here
Peace, Yoga and Horses,