This blog is really about body position, not just legs and feet. But oh, how I wish that's all I needed to work on! Now, I am definitely not an expert, but what I really hate about my lower body position is that my lower leg is so far behind the girth, my toe is pointed out, and my heel is way higher than my toes. Am I right?
The photo to the right was shot in September, so I really hope my position has improved at least somewhat since then.
In my defense, my right ankle is MUCH stiffer than the left and it is almost painful to ride with the right foot pointing forward. "Like you're skiing," says my coach ... without even a hint of exasperation. Given that I hear her repeatedly remind me about my toes, I am surprised that she just hasn't thrown in the proverbial towel about that right foot!
But back to my leg position ... I know, cognitively, that if I get my upper body back and turn that inside shoulder in just a bit, it will open up my pelvis and my leg will lengthen. Knowing it and making it happen are just two different things.
I also need to think about compensating for the raised heel by thinking bear down on the heel. My coach doesn't really like that visual, bearing down on the heel, because it tends to create the "chair position" (legs too far in front). Since I have so much trouble putting any weight in my heels, she's okay with the visual as long as I don't get my leg too far forward. She needn't worry since I only remember to bear down on the heel like once during a ride. Therefore the heel continues to be too high!
It would seem that to achieve that better leg position that I am pining after, I am going to have to get those stirrups down another hole or two.
One more thing ... although It doesn't really seem like a fair comparison, since in one photo we are trotting (top) and in the other (bottom) we are standing still, but it looks like I have a more open hip angle in the lower photo. I am sure that is helping my leg position, too.
Well shoot ... that's what I just did!