5 Best Post-Ride Stretches for Equestrians

Testing PohlmanBlogs, From Dean, Video, Medium (10-24 minutes), Workouts

5 Best Post-Ride Stretches
5 Best Post-Ride Stretches

Many of the injuries experienced by equestrians do not occur during the ride itself. They actually occur as a result of not stretching once you are finished with your ride. Being upright on a horse is a killer workout! It taxes your upper-body, hips, core, and your spine.

There are many stretches you can do after a ride to help cool down and recover more quickly, but my goal is to show you the most effective ones, to ensure you are getting the most out benefit for precious time spent.

These are the 5 poses I recommend for this particular situation, but the best way for you to achieve the benefits these postures can provide for you is by following a results-focused yoga program and completing multiple weekly workouts on a regular basis. Learn more about how we help you with that at the bottom!

Here are the 5 best post-ride stretches for equestrians to prevent injury and recover more quickly.

Wide-legged forward fold with Eagle Arms

1. Wide-legged forward fold
   with Eagle Arms

This combination stretch addresses both hips and shoulders. The wide-legged stance stretches your inner thighs, which releases tension from your hips, lower-back, and knees, while the eagle arms up top releases tension in your upper-back caused by staying upright. Hold this one for 60 seconds total, switching arms half-way through.

Lizard

2. Lizard

Lizard is an absolute must. When you are upright on the horse, your hip flexors are in constant flexion. They are being utilized, shortened, and tensed all at once. If they remain tense after a workout, they can pull on your lower-back and cause discomfort or even pain. In order to get these muscles to relax and recover, we need to get them into a lengthened or extended position. Lizard does just that, allowing the muscle to relax and recover. Your back will thank you, too! Hold for 45-60 seconds on both sides.

Reclined Figure 4

3. Reclined Figure 4

Your hips are extremely important to your ride, and the largest (or 2nd largest) muscle in your hips are your glutes – your butt muscles. On top of being used excessively in your ride, these muscles are typically in a tensed position throughout the day as a result of sitting or driving. Even if you don’t sit that often, standing doesn’t do much either. Your glutes are typically inactive during sitting or standing, and that means they get tight! Reclined figure 4 stretches your glutes, relieving tension in your lower-back, allowing these extremely important muscles to recover more quickly, even increasing the potential strength in your hips. Hold for 30-45 seconds on both sides. (Be careful of your knee here!)

Reclined Quad Stretch

4. Reclined Quad Stretch

Your quadriceps attach to your knees, and most us know how finicky those can be. In order to prevent knee pain or discomfort, we need to make sure to take care of the muscles that attach to them. This is a wonderful passive stretch for your quadriceps, which helps that muscle group to lengthen, recover, and relieve tension from the knee. Hold for 30-60 seconds on both sides.

Reclined Twist

5. Reclined Twist

Your quadriceps attach to your knees, and most us know how finicky those can be. In order to prevent knee pain or discomfort, we need to make sure to take care of the muscles that attach to them. This is a wonderful passive stretch for your quadriceps, which helps that muscle group to lengthen, recover, and relieve tension from the knee. Hold for 30-60 seconds on both sides.

Watch a video explaining each of the above postures!

This video explains how to properly and safely perform each posture, where you should be feeling the posture in your body, and how it affects your fitness as an equestrian. Enjoy!


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