When riding a horse, it is important to be able to ride the horse straight from head to tail. When riding this way, you will achieve perfect balance.
To ride a horse straight, you have to turn the horse with your legs, not your hands. Your legs control the horse from the shoulder to the tail. Your hands control the horse’s head and neck. If you are turning your horse with your hands, you are not gaining complete control of the shoulder. Imagine walking around all day with your head tipped to one side and see how sore you would be by the end of the day!
Now, imagine walking around all day without moving your head or neck. You would lose flexibility. This is why you should be able to ride a horse straight, but to have a complete athlete, you will also have to bend your horse with various suppling exercises.
To be able to ride straight and bend, you have to be able to feel and control every part of your horse’s body. It’s not easy, but it’s fun to learn and rewarding for your horse.
For more information check out:
Keeping Your Horse Underneath You