I am a believer in using all the natural aids we have at our disposal to communicate to our horses what we want them to do. The natural aids are hands, seat, and legs. The next principal in successful horsemanship is to give cues to the horses in a consistent manner. Horses must learn from repetition. The third principal in successful horsemanship is to apply the aids (pressure) and release immediately when the horse responds. To successfully apply these principals the rider must be balanced on the horse. One of the biggest problems I see with riders is an improper seat. Things that contribute to this are improper stirrup length, poor posture, lack of confidence, and not enough hours in the saddle.
The horse has the job of carrying the rider, but it is difficult for him to be very comfortable if the rider is “sloshing” around like water in a rolling barrel. The better balanced a rider is, the better balanced his horse can be, and the easier his movement. When the rider makes it easier for the horse to perform, there’s less resistance, so both the horse and rider enjoy a far more comfortable and enjoyable ride.