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How To Mount A Horse Correctly

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Horses can be skittish creatures and learning to mount correctly ensures that the rider has full control over the animal from the start. There are four normal methods of mounting: placing the foot in the stirrup iron; using a mounting block; having a ‘leg up’; springing up from the ground over the horse’s neck and withers (used mainly in racing yards by agile stable staff!). And remember that the right side for mounting is the WRONG side.
What you'll need: 
Rider's hard hat
Well-fitting riding boots
The rider should stand a little to the left front of the horse, taking up the reins with the left hand, and making sure that the left rein is tighter than the right. This ensures that should the horse start to move before you’ve mounted, you have control, as its head will automatically turn to face you. This position also avoids being cow-kicked.
Put left foot in the stirrup and take hold of the mane (with the left hand still holding the reins) about halfway up the neck. By placing your left hand well up on the crest, you will maintain the short hold of the reins.
Put your right hand well over the cantle, or back of the saddle. Having the hands separated gives the rider better balance in the event of the horse moving, and you are now ready to spring off the right foot, while straightening the left knee.
Your right hand is moved to the front of the saddle and the right leg swung over the horse’s back, taking care not to kick the animal as you do.
Drop lightly in the saddle and put your foot the right stirrup iron, making sure that the leather is not twisted. Before moving off check that your stirrups are the right length and that the girth is tight.
It is permissible to use a mounting block and most old stable yards will have one. Improvise by using an upside down milk crate, providing there is someone to remove it before you move off as it could injure the horse’s leg. Professional jockeys mount by being given a ‘leg up’ as the stirrups are much shorter than in normal riding. Others will jump up and lie across the saddle before swinging the right leg over. This technique is useful if you become unseated when ‘out in the country’ and have to mount without assistance.
If mounting with a whip, hold this in the right hand.
Always double check the girth fof tightness, or the saddle will slip.


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