Albany Clinic: Suite 103, Apollo Health and Wellness Centre,
119 Apollo Drive, Albany (map »)


menu click

Useful Articles

Equestrian Sport and Rider Biomechanics

Equestrian Sport and Rider Biomechanics

Victoria writes…… "I met Dr Cherye Roche at Pure Healthcare in Albany approximately two months ago and, boy, I am glad I did! 

I am one of NZ’s top dressage riders, and had been going to another excellent chiropractor who helped improve my posture and spine health.

When my Chiropractor left the practice and Dr. Cherye Roche took over, I fervently resisted going to another chiropractor, as I was so happy with the one I had. Little did I know, this change would be groundbreaking for me in terms of my riding and performance.

I was accustomed to visiting my Chiropractor regularly for “the usual” aches and pains that cropped up every few weeks. However, on the 4th visit with Dr. Cherye, she told me that every time I came in to see her my right leg was at least 1 cm longer than my left. Furthermore, this was not because the bones of the right leg were longer, but rather that it was because my pelvis was twisting and tilting due to abnormal foot motion in my gait. She offered to do a gait analysis for me, so I agreed.

She showed me how my feet were asymmetrical and this caused a difference in the way I distributed weight in my feet when I walked, which in turn effected my whole posture, both in and out of the saddle. Cherye was more interested in how my biomechanics were going to effect my health long term, but I was more interested in how it was going to help me win! But to be fair, her concerns are very real, especially since my granddad was crippled by degradation of the spine, and bad biomechanics were a big factor.

So based on the gait analysis, using the GaitScan® system, custom orthotics were ordered. After a short time of adjusting to the orthotics my body started to change dramatically. I will never forget the first ride I had with a straight pelvis. It was amazing. I felt so in balance with the horse, the horse and I felt more at “one” and my aids and signals were getting through to the horse better. I could communicate with the horse more effectively, had far less losses of balance to correct and BEST of all …all of a sudden my posture was great with no effort from me. Suddenly, 30 years of being told to sit up and put my shoulders back resolved at last!

Dressage, and indeed any top level sport, is all about balance and symmetry, because without it you have no power or consistency. Dr. Cherye also explained to me that many of the top sports people in the world are talented not only because of things such as instinct, reaction time and co-ordination but also because they are naturally symmetrically balanced.

I highly recommend Cherye, and urge any top level or serious sports person to go and have a gait analysis to see if there are ways to improve your performance." Victoria Wall

So – if you are someone who has been told that you have a postural problem, a leg length difference, a “twisted pelvis” or have some other imbalance in your posture or walking gait, give us a call. Or – go to my website www.GaitDoctor.co.nz and download the voucher for a 50% discount on a biomechanics exam and GaitScan analysis. If we can help you we will. If we can’t, we will let you know and help you find someone who can.