Riding a horse sidesaddle is difficult enough, but sidesaddle jumping at world-record heights adds a whole new level of difficulty.
If you've ever ridden sidesaddle, then you know how difficult it can be. You not only have to balance yourself, but you also have to direct the horse using your reins and only one leg. Riding sidesaddle may leave you feeling a little unsteady, but sidesaddle jumping is even more challenging.
In the video below, Susan Oakes takes on the world record for sidesaddle jumping. She tackles both the puissance and the double bar, and watching her is pretty amazing. Few people would have the skill - or the nerve - necessary to tackle these fences when riding, let alone when mounted sidesaddle.
Oakes and her horse deserve a solid round of applause.
Have you always wanted to give sidesaddle riding a try? Sidesaddle is an art form, and it's not too frequently practiced in the United States. Still, there are some sidesaddle enthusiasts who may be able to help you out. If you want to try sidesaddle, then finding a rider who currently rides that discipline may be the best way to go.
Here's why: Riding sidesaddle creates a different weight distribution than your horse is used to. Additionally, the horse needs to be responsive even without the aid of your right leg against his side. Horses need to be trained in order to carry a rider sidesaddle, so it's not something that you just want to try out with any horse.
Try asking your trainer if they know anyone who teaches sidesaddle riding. You might also look for sidesaddle clubs or organizations in your area - they can be great resources and probably know just how to help you get started in the sport.
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