3 pillars of positive posture for horseback riders

Holding up 3 fingers

Photo courtesy of stockimages, freedigitalphotos.net

Effortless posture, or what I call “posture that works for you”, isn’t just about the position you place your body in. It starts from the inside out and involves 3 things. Structure—your musculoskeletal system; how you deal with ever-present stress, and strategies for finding and renewing freedom in your body.

Good posture is a continuing journey of awareness.


Bones, muscles and soft tissues

The similarities between the structure of humans and horses are pretty remarkable, and being aware of them can help rider and horse work better together. Horses and humans both have a poll (or head/neck joint) and a topline (spine). Ideally both are free of tension so the body’s parts can move without hindrance and rider and horse can move as one.

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[Tip of the Month] Stop Clamping Down Your Posture & Start Going Up Right Now

Image of bubbles going up

Illustration courtesy of Stuart Miles freedigitalphotos.net

Are you bothered by pain or posture problems like slumping? If the answer is yes, you could be making the problem worse by unknowingly tightening and clamping down your body. Read on for a tip to nip this pattern in the bud and start going up instead. Going up relieves the tension and makes you effortlessly taller.

What triggers clamping down?

Stress is the cause of so much unnecessary tension in our bodies! How do you know if you’re clamping down without realizing it? Are you dealing with one or more of these types of stress on a regular basis?

  • Time stress “I’ve got to get all the horses fed before I go to work”
  • Emotional stress “My partner’s upset with me because I complained about the socks on the floor”
  • Physical stress “My shoulder is tense”
  • Postural stress “My trainer says I brace my back (drill sergeant) or slump in the saddle”

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Got pain when you work, exercise or relax? [VIDEO]

Click here to register for the free preview


What:  Back Pain Be Gone Free Preview

When:  Monday September 21

Time:  6:30 – 8:00 pm

Where: 5001 SE Brooklyn St.

Portland, OR 97206

Register here:  http://tiny.cc/BackClass

Hi, Emily here, from TheSuppleRider.com. If you live in the Portland area and have pain when you work, exercise or relax, you’re in the right place.

Did you know that posture problems are a huge cause of pain? The good news is, there’s a solution for that.It’s a simple easy class called Back Pain Be Gone.

Join us for a free preview Monday, September 21stat 6:30 in NE Portland. Click here for more information and registration.

Til then, remember: pain is a thief. Don’t let it rob you.

See you in September!

Body solutions that improve your mood [VIDEO]

Click here to register for the free preview


What:  Back Pain Be Gone Free Preview
When:  Monday September 21
Time:  6:30 – 8:00 pm
Where: 5001 SE Brooklyn St., Portland, OR 97206
Register here:  http://tiny.cc/BackClass


Hi, Emily here, from TheSuppleRider.com.

If you live in the Portland area and sometimes feel anxious or down, you’re in the right place. Did you know that your posture has a big impact on your mood? When you slump it can make you feel depressed and hopeless.

When you brace your back you can feel anxious or rigid. The good news is, there’s a solution for that. It’s a simple easy class called Back Pain Be Gone. With free, easy posture you feel calm and in control.

Join us for a free preview Monday September 21st at 6:30 in NE Portland.

Click below for more information and registration!
See you on the 21st!

Pain is a thief—don’t let it rob you [VIDEO]

Hey riders, Emily here, from TheSuppleRider.com. Many riders suffer needlessly with pain. I help clients shift harmful posture habits that create discomfort.

Together, we create new habits of effortless posture. Clients say they feel great and connect with their horse every single ride.

Remember, pain is a thief. Don’t let it rob you.

Click here to get a copy of my free report, The Secrets of Pain Free Riders. Til next time, stay tall in the saddle!

The trick to true core strength

Core Strength for Horseback Riders

photo by stockimages freedigitalphotos.net

We’ve all heard that core strength is important for horseback riders. And it is important. But focusing too much on strengthening and not enough on creating ease in the body can actually strengthen an underlying cycle of stiffness and pain.

Stiffness and pain cycle

The stiffness and pain cycle prevents independent movement of riders’ legs, arms, head/neck and torso.

When a rider has low back pain, they’re often advised to strengthen their core muscles in order to support the back.

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[VIDEO] What is the Alexander Technique?

Are you a horseback rider with pain or stiffness before, during or after you ride?

Or maybe you feel great, but want to connect even better with your horse?

Hi, I’m Emily Clark, The Posture Professional, in Portland, Oregon.

I show horseback riders how to reduce or eliminate pain and stiffness so they can connect with their horse every single ride.

My clients learn a proven solution called The Alexander Technique.

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What to do when you hurt your back

back pain womanAbout a month ago, I wrenched my back out for the first time since becoming an Alexander Technique certified instructor over a decade ago. I’d bent over to pick up my giant tote bag and jerked myself up without thinking.

It hurt like crazy.

I had that “uh-oh” moment when it felt like a rubber band stretched in my back, and didn’t spring back into place. Yikes.

A bad case of the “shoulds”

As a back-care professional, all these thoughts went through my head:

  • I “should” have prevented it
  • I “should” have known better
  • I “should” feel better faster
  • I “shouldn’t” need help

Then I realized, none of the “shoulds” were doing me any good

The “shoulds” were just creating more stress and making the problem worse.

After the initial embarrassment, I knew I needed to get help fast.

I called my office neighbor who is an amazing Bowen practitioner and massage therapist and got on her table. I scheduled an Alexander Technique lesson for myself with a colleague and friend. I practiced Active Rest twice a day.

Within one day I got significant relief, and by the end of the week I felt like my old self again.

Tips for getting better fast—if you have back pain

  • Get relief right away from a trusted practitioner such as a gentle massage therapist or an Alexander Technique instructor
  • Practice undoing tension in your body daily with Active Rest
  • Learn how to prevent the pain from recurring with Alexander lessons

You don’t have to suffer if you get help sooner rather than later

You can download a no cost recording here that walks you through Active Rest, and contact Emily to chat about next steps that work.

“Life-Changing Stress Hack”: Entrepreneur Magazine on The Alexander Technique

Image courtesy DigitalArt, freedigitalphotos.net

Image courtesy DigitalArt, freedigitalphotos.net

In a recent article in Entrepreneur magazine, contributor Zach Ferres called the Alexander Technique the stress-reduction tool that has contributed more to his success than exercise, visualizations, laughter and “drinking inordinate amounts of chamomile tea”. As an Alexander Technique instructor in the Portland, OR area AND an entrepreneur myself, I wholeheartedly agree.

“Balance despite high-stress entrepreneurial efforts”

After a few lessons with an instructor Zach was able to put these things into practice on a daily basis:

  • Body relaxation
  • Centering mind
  • Better vocal control
  • Improved public speaking
  • Clear thinking under pressure

Check out the entire article here. To find an instructor in your area, visit amsatonline.org, or in the Portland, OR area contact Emily at 503 505 4155 or here.

Braced Posture In the Saddle and What to Do About It

BracedGraphicHorseback riders know upright posture in the saddle helps them ride better. But being able to get there without becoming rigid can be tough.

When riders first come to my Alexander Technique practice, I often notice they have braced posture rather than a slump. They’ve been told to “sit up” but haven’t been instructed how to get and stay upright without strain, rigidity and pain.

Have You Noticed…?

  • An exaggerated curve in your low back
  • Pain or strain in your low back

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