Jump 3: Developing Connection & Longevity (Physically & Mentally) Helps to Ride for Life
In Jump 3 we learn about implementing certain connections for the longevity of lifelong riding. The 3rd Jump is the last component and summation of the EFA program. Before creating The Equestrian Fitness Academy, I did extensive market research on fitness programs and saw that most of them only provided the fitness exercises and ‘some’ practices needed to improve fitness levels. Oftentimes we forget what makes our horses athletes, and what keeps them operating at the level they consistently perform. We provide the horses with the best because we love them and want to give them the absolute gold standard of practically everything. These horses have the finest care even if it breaks the personal bank.
A few of the best things they have, include:
- Barn/Stall (Shelter)
- Feed/Supplements (proper Nutrition and Hydration)
- Stall Flooring (Bedding)
- Grooming (Personal Care)
- Exercise (Daily Turnout)(Cardio and Strength)
Now let’s ask the question, of the categories listed above, how many of these are you actively doing on a consistent/regular basis daily and weekly? If the majority of these above cannot be matched with regularity then there is a break in the link of connection and longevity for riding your horse.
In EFA it’s called the ‘inner game’, this component of rider athleticism is paramount! The physical and psychological ability to handle the challenges outside and inside of the barn before, during and after each ride. This element of the program deals with understanding why mental health, meditation, relaxation and the cultivation of all three complete a rider. The inner game unifies a rider. The rider with only flexibility, strength, stamina and stability will always have a major deficit within their abilities. The mental side of riding is very important and thus cannot be missed in a comprehensive program like this. If you’re unsure where to start, everything will be explained bit by bit to make sure you know how, where and when to start focusing on the mental side of the riding. Whether you are riding for fun and enjoyment or competing you’ll develop a stronger mental game to outsmart your competition.
Nutrition & Hydration
The ‘Balanced Energy Guide’ will provide proper education, tips, tricks and hacks to keep your health and energy sustained before, during and after each ride. Since we make sure our horses have the best to eat and drink, it’s just as important that the athlete also have proper nutritional habits and traits conducive to peak performance. Although most people have a love-hate relationship with carbohydrates; carbs are the single best way to provide energy in the body. They are responsible for 45-55% of our daily energy needs, which means it’s a major source of fuel for our daily activities, especially ones physically demanding like riding our horses. Electrolytes are one major part of human hydration and must be consumed with the right timing and dosages. Electrolytes help sustain long-term muscle contractions, proper fluid balance, and neurological activity. All three parts are essential to basic body functions and high performance on the horse. Electrolytes also play a major role in minimizing cramps felt during and after your ride. Carbs and electrolytes are just two points of information in the ‘Balanced Energy Guide’, these two help two explain how they’re directly linked to rider performance.
Connection for Longevity
Connection is a word that is used to describe a lot of different parts in the equestrian world. Connection from the fitness side is integral because it’s a multifaceted aspect that takes time, patience and unity for it to come together. In my experience, a strong/complete connection cannot be achieved without the pillars of stability in the saddle, suppleness through the ankle-knee-hip-back, strength of the core/legs, stamina in the seat/2 point position and the proper nutrition and inner game to overcome the many mental challenges that arise. There will be a disconnect with your horse if ‘any’ of these components are lacking in your riding regiment. Taking care of yourself is the best way to improve your riding and this is why embarking on this journey is a surefire way to build the ultimate unity and connection with your horse for years to come. Your horse will thank you for it!
In Jump 3 of Equestrian Fitness Academy you will build two more major components of your riding through various modalities while developing connection and longevity to ride for life.
As the exercise program continues through this Jump you will add more aspects to building unity with your horse. The Inner Game and The Balanced Energy Guide will add the well-needed information and tools to help advance your riding abilities.
Nutrition and hydration information are here to enhance your performance in and out of the saddle. A rider who has physical stamina at the cellular level will exhibit higher performance within their bodies and minds, which’s been scientifically proven.
Inner Game (Mentality of Riding) the ability to acknowledge, address and acclimate to the fears, capabilities, setbacks, and excitements while staying composed through it all. The inner game is important in any sport but even more so with our horses because they can feel and sense our energy before we start our ride.
The 3 Jump system was created in a specific order to allow each rider to gain and grasp the proper order/steps to receive the ultimate progress in their riding abilities. When following the order and going jump by jump, I guarantee you will see and experience results bit-by-bit over the 90 day period.