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You've found the Mary-Dixon page about horsemanship.  Horses are my passion and my obsession.  They have helped me become a kinder, more confident, more patient person.  What they have taught me about them and taught me about myself is immeasureable.  I now try to teach folks about the nature of horses and how to understand each other which leads to a more confident human and a more confident little darling.
Adventure Horse Riding in NYS

9/15/11

Tip #34 The Art of Falling - is there such a thing ? Actually, yes!

The Art of Falling - Is there such a thing ?

 This  is a synopsis of  "How to Prevent Falls" by Betty Carpenter.  Falls and fear pretty much go hand 'n' hand.  You aren't sure what to do when your body is falling into space and you freeze up because of the terror of the landing & that fear is worse especially after a fall - it seems to be somehting that we have a pretty difficult time getting over with.  I've been there and I know that many of you have too.

Some things she suggests to practice:
  • Lay down in bed and stretch - this promotes balance, bending, flexibility, reaching
  • In bed, shake and wiggle your limbs and fingers and toes, arch your back a bit
  • Tense and tighten your body then do this over again
  • Reach for the ceiling & move your arms and legs around
  • Turn your head around - up, down, left, right 

  • Flop down into a chair - don't use the armrest or anything - this might take some practice
  • Get out of the chair without using anything to push yourself up. Use just your legs to get up
  • Stand along side your bed - frontwards, then backwards, and just let your body flop onto the bed like when you were a little kid
  • Practice rolling around

  • If you fall, do not try to break your fall with your arms or brace yourself - something will  probably break.  These exercises are supposed to help your body prevent itelf from the bracing because you have trained your muscles to be loose and flexible.  So, you need to practice practice, practice.  They aren't hard.  One or two times doing the exercises won't help you even a little bit.  Put some effort into this.
These easy little exercises help  your body to develop muscle memory and stay relaxed instead of tense.  It's the tense and rigidity that hurt the most when you land. 


The exercises were developed for seniors who have relatively constant crashes and injuries as a result.  The older we get, the less pliable we are simply because we don't do any of the above.

Her book is good.  Check it out.

Mary Dixon    Adventure Horse Riding in NYS     RideNYS.com