View Full Version : Trotting Diagonals
20th Feb 2007, 03:58 AM
Hi just wondering at what point everyone learnt this? My friend was shown it on about lesson 5 yet I have been told I won't be doing it until my rising trot is perfected, although was given the reading for it (my riding school gives us reading and homework for each stage)
Also did people find it easy to master and is it something you do all the time once you learn?
20th Feb 2007, 08:21 AM
Hi kiwigirl. I cant really remember when i learnt about diagonals, I think it would have been about lesson 7, when i was comfortable in trot, wasn't pulling on the reins to 'lift me up' and had a nice rythm. Its really not as difficult to work out what diagonal you are on as you first think.
An easy way to work it out is.. you sit when the outside shoulder goes back then rise again as it comes forward.
Once you have mastered it you will realise it is alot more comfortable to 'be on the right diagonal'. And yes you do it all the time when you ride in the arena, but then after a while you 'get a feel' for it and you know if you are on the wrong one or not as its not as comfortable !!!
Its good to hear your RS is giving you reading and homework, you'll be surprised just how much we take in and learn about riding by reading up.
Well done in your progress, keep it up
20th Feb 2007, 08:28 AM
Hi Kiwigirl.....again, not sure what number lesson we learnt it in, but you're best perfecting the rising trot first, then you'll pick up the correct diagonal without even thinking about it really easily!:D
20th Feb 2007, 08:31 AM
I ditto everything Horseygirl says.
Diagonals are easy to master once you know how and like Horseygirl said, after a while you get the 'feel' for whether your on the right diaglonal or not.
I think, and correct me if I'm wrong, that we use diagonals to save the horses back plus we rise when the outside fore comes forward (and the inside fore is back) because horses find it easy to bend if we do that? :confused: It was a slightly well-educated guess.....
I learnt about trotting on about my forth or fifth lesson on a lead rein I think, but it was so long ago I cant remember. It wasnt until I got onto the lunge that I learnt about diagonals though (but that was still quite a while back!)
I think I have to give you a good congratulations on your progress you've done very well so far so keep at it!
20th Feb 2007, 10:18 AM
definately agree with the others
master the rising trot & the diagonals will come pretty easy
in all honesty once you really get the trot you might even do it naturally
aside from watching the front outside leg if you basically rise as soon as the horse takes the first step into trot you will be on the correct diagonal every time
20th Feb 2007, 11:16 AM
was about lesson 4 or 5 for me, but it took me so long to get it correct, I find it so obvious these days that I find it hard to belive that it took me about 6 months before I could get it correct every time. I think my RI was very frustrated with me!
20th Feb 2007, 05:31 PM
I haven't been taught it yet (been riding nearly 6 months now) but I can get the right diagonal by feel sometimes, and I know when it feels wrong, so will change diagonals so I am on the right one. It will come with time, just work on your rising, and when you get it right it will feel right to you then you can judge it better if you know what I mean. I hope that makes sense lol! :D
20th Feb 2007, 10:01 PM
Just a quick question while we are talking about diagonals :D
Does anyone find a particular diagonal more comfortable when out hacking? I find the right diagonal more comfortable to rise to ( so sitting when right fore comes back )
Just wondered if anyone else has a preference !!
I obviously do change diagonals if we are trotting for a long time (for the horses sake! )
So, I dont confuse anyone.......... you dont really need to worry about what diagonal you are on when out hacking, only in the school ;) (well i dont think you do anyway !!! )
20th Feb 2007, 10:03 PM
I usually teach adults by looking as soon as they have established a rythmic trot and could ride a change of rein in trot. Start working on feel only when rider has an understanding and feeling for the way the horse moves and a good sitting trot, which unusually I prefer to teach after rising trot.
With children the whole thing is much harder, some kids get the idea quickly but for others 'watching the shoulder' beomes an obsession to the detriment of actually riding the trot! I seldom get children under 11 developing a feel for what is going on 'underneath' them.
20th Feb 2007, 10:04 PM
when teaching the kiddies, we generally wait until they are comfortable in rising trot unaided, without holding onto a saddle/neck strap or using reins to balance, and when they have a decent amount of control. I can't remember when i was taught diagonals, but it took a month or so to automatically check. PM me if you have any more questions
21st Feb 2007, 12:00 AM
Im totally unsure, I probably looked it up seeing as the first RS I went to I so did not progress.
Then I moved and ever since its been fantastic, ponies who will challenge you, ponies who will give you confidence, ponies who keep you awake, ponies who are fun and bubbly to learn on:)
21st Feb 2007, 12:01 AM
I am a bit concerned that two of you have refered to 'using the reins to balance'. I am VERY old fashioned but I will not allow anyone to have reins until they are balanced, the horses mouth is not an acceptable 'handle' Riders really need to have established the trot without reins before they are allowed to hold them and long before worrying about diagonals.
21st Feb 2007, 02:52 AM
I lernt it once I was conferdent in rising trot, but I hate it, I still get it rong, I find it very hard to get since I'm blind, and I still can't feal wether I am on the right diaggenal or not! witch is strange, since I feal things on a horse that sighted people can't! so I'm very very confused.
21st Feb 2007, 03:06 AM
Horse crazy??? try posting (without your R.I. calling out any instructions) and then sit for two beats and then start posting again. Keep doing that and try to feel for any difference. Each time you sit for two beats...you will be changing diagonals. Try it when things are quiet at your barn and try to feel for some difference in the movement. If you can differentiate between the two? then you can ask your R.I. to tell you which one is the correct diagonal.
It is easier to feel on some horses and harder on others.:)
21st Feb 2007, 03:48 AM
hi julia, sorry I couldn't pm you back it wasn't working for some reason
I think it's about the same as when I was on my first horse I started off with, I can do it if I conserntrate really hard, but it doesn't come natraly, . my ri has to shout change your diaggenal all the time. but I will muck around with it this arvo in my lesson, maybe I will be able to feal the difference when I'm not on the right diaggenal. I think it's also because Im trying to remember everything eles I have to do and have no brain left over for the right diaggenal!... o and yes the horse Im on now has very smooth gates.
21st Feb 2007, 04:00 AM
Do you ever get the chance to just trot around the arena when everything is quiet? If so...then perhaps you can try switching diagonals then. On my horse? it is very easy to feel when I am on the correct diagonal but it is harder to tell on other horses until you get used to riding them. There are so many things to think about when riding...so I understand that it is hard to focus in on any one thing in particular. Ask your R.I. if you can just mess around with it one day...keep switching diagonals to see if you can feel any difference. How long have you been riding your present horse?
21st Feb 2007, 08:38 AM
yeah I will, I don't think my r.i is to worryed at the moment, I think she will make me pracktice it later since im lerning a fue other different things at the moment, she understands how it can get confusing doing a fue other different things at the same time when your not use to them yet! I tryed to feal the diaggenal today in my lesson, but got destrackted with trying to put my legs under me and keeping them there and my ballereana toes in to! not to mention all the other things she was shouting at me... she seams to only tell me to change the diaggenal once, and it's when I have changed rane, so maybe I am doing it right with out nowing but forget to change it when changing rane?
I'm rambling on now...
21st Feb 2007, 02:32 PM
if she tells you to change diagonals only when you change rein then yes.....sounds like you are posting on the correct diagonal and she is just reminding you to switch when you change over.:)
And people say horseback riding is easy:p
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