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x.Eventing.x
Jul. 19, 2011, 12:04 AM
I had a lesson a couple of hours ago and as I am watching the videos my dad took, over the smaller jumps (21 in - 2 ft) My folding is appropriate (parallel to the horses' neck), but over a higher fence, I am jumping it like it was a smaller jump and it looks like I am standing straight up!!! Then, I sat down to early and unfortunatley yanked the pony I was riding. :/ Next time jumping the higher fence, I did the same sit-straight-up thing and I sat down WAY to early, like right in the middle of the jump, but this time I didn't yank the pony. I know most people would say to go back to smaller fences, but I fold fine/release fine/and don't sit back too early on smaller jumps, but on the bigger ones, everything goes wrong. What are some techniques I can try to master my fold and timing on bigger jumps?? Thanks :)

netg
Jul. 19, 2011, 01:09 AM
Gymnastics with your eyes closed (on a horse who doesn't stop). Helped me anyway. You can make them very low, but it sounds like you're going too early/throwing yourself forward. Over a big jump you end up getting your butt spanked if you do that, because the horse is still jumping as you're returning to where the saddle was. Taking away the vision makes you have to feel what the horse is doing, but it's easy to just open your eyes if your situation is iffy. A combination of jumping with my eyes closed and thinking about trying to touch my butt to the back of the saddle helped me. The butt to back of saddle is a personal thing, though, and depends on what you're actually doing wrong vs. what you're feeling - for some people it's a very bad idea to try to feel that as with their problems they end up getting left behind dangerously.

(And also listen to other people, as I'm no expert... just sharing what worked for me!)

GingerJumper
Jul. 19, 2011, 08:34 AM
I did that when I started in the bigger jumpers. I'd sit up too soon if the distance to the next fence looked funky or whatever. It helped me to think about the backside of the fence like a hunter... They stay up and OUT of that tack for 2-3 strides afterwards and stay out of the horse's way so it can recover fluidly and naturally. That made all the difference in the world.

Also, I'd stay away from any jumping without hands, that tends to make this kind of problem worse. Jumping grids with your eyes closed is definitely a good idea though, as long as you're on a very honest pony.

From your other posts, it sounds like you're riding schoolies and don't own your own yet, so I'd talk this over with your trainer as well, assuming I'm right and that these are school horses.

bornfreenowexpensive
Jul. 19, 2011, 11:13 AM
Sounds like a timing thing. Over the bigger fences...you are in the air slightly longer and need to actually KEEP your hip angle closed.

So let the horse jump up to you then you hold that position longer. So what you are describing in the video sounds like it is showing is a weakness in your two point....you are not holding it (takes some core strength).

What works for me is to concentrate on landing in the top of my leg. Practice on the flat by shortening your stirrups, go into two point closing your hip angle but keeping your shoulders up and open. Really feel the weight going through your hips into your leg letting your ankles and knees flex with the movement of the horse trotting and cantering.


Then when jumping the bigger jumps really think about landing IN two point. You do not sit up as much as the horse drops away from your chest while you keep your hip angle closed and use your core strength to keep your shoulders off their neck.

It is hard to verbalize this...but when you feel it...you will get it! Takes practice.

x.Eventing.x
Jul. 19, 2011, 12:33 PM
AppyGoLucky- I am riding lesson horses :) sadly, I do not own a horse of my own yet :/ (however I would rather not right now until I get all of my important riding kinks out) the pony I rode yesterday was very honest and forgiving, (thankfully). And actually, we did gymnastics yesterday!!! And from the video, I was folding most over the gymnastics!! Maybe next time I just ride w/o taking a lesson, I will set up a triple and make two smaller fences and the last one big?? Also, people have told me to grab mane where my hands should be over the fence, so my hands can asct like a focal point and I can fold down towards them. I have tried that before and it worked quite well, but ever since switching barns and not taking a lesson in like 6 months, my eq is really bad :/ thanks so much for the advice!! I am going to try the eyes-closed thing next time :)

bornfreenowexpensive
Jul. 19, 2011, 01:25 PM
just be careful...YOU do not fold. The horse jumps up and you allow thier movement to close your hips. Over little jumps...this will not be much unless they are over jumping;) Grab mane and just let things happen a bit...if you start thinking too much and doing too much...you will end up over folding (ask me how I know:winkgrin:).

Janet
Jul. 19, 2011, 01:38 PM
This might be a time to use a neckstrap. Holding onto the neckstrap will stop you from falling back
a) while you get used to what it FEELS like to stay forward longer
b) while you develop the strength you need to STAY in position for the whole fence.

x.Eventing.x
Jul. 19, 2011, 01:53 PM
Thanks for posting that. I will tell my trainer about using a neck strap!!!

deltawave
Jul. 19, 2011, 01:55 PM
Sounds like a timing thing. Over the bigger fences...you are in the air slightly longer and need to actually KEEP your hip angle closed.



Exactly what I wanted to say. :)

x.Eventing.x
Jul. 19, 2011, 01:57 PM
Oh, and what do you guys think of jumping gymnastics with no reins?? Not no hands, just no reins, so that I will have to hold onto the horse's mane??

deltawave
Jul. 19, 2011, 02:00 PM
No schooling through gymnastics is ever wasted. :)

archieflies
Jul. 19, 2011, 03:22 PM
Maybe next time I just ride w/o taking a lesson, I will set up a triple and make two smaller fences and the last one big??


Does your trainer allow you to jump on your own without being in a lesson? it sounds like that may not be a great idea at this point. Timing issues and standing in the stirrups can get you dumped pretty hard if the pony decides to stop-- which even the nicest schooling pony will do after being bumped in the back and caught in the mouth too often. I also wouldn't suggest trying a whole lot of new exercises outside of lessons at this point in your riding. It's too easy to get something wrong or teach yourself/the pony a bad habit. Let your trainer design the exercises to address the issue in lessons, and use your "on your own" riding time to work a lot in 2-point and posting without stirrups to strengthen that lower leg so it CAN hold you in position long enough to make it over the larger jumps.

As far as addressing the problem mentally, don't think "fold" or "lean forward" over the jump so much as "butt back." I still have to go back pretty often and address equitation even after years and years of riding and owning my own horses, and the number one reminder I have to give myself (for jumping, at least) is "butt back."

archieflies
Jul. 19, 2011, 03:26 PM
Oh, and what do you guys think of jumping gymnastics with no reins?? Not no hands, just no reins, so that I will have to hold onto the horse's mane??

If you're working on no reins, the purpose is to be balancing with your legs, not your hands... practiving grabbing main in this case is only going to teach you to rely MORE on your hands... which means your legs still aren't doing their job, and when you take your reins back you're going to be balancing on them and your poor pony's mouth. Grabbing main is an excellent way to keep from catching the pony's mouth when you find yourself in a sticky situation (getting jumped out of the tack, left behind, etc.), but it is NOT something you should be shooting for as an everyday practice.

Really, please, please talk to your trainer about these things and don't practice any of it without experienced supervision!

Far_North_Equestrian
Jul. 19, 2011, 03:56 PM
I agree with the above, time for a chat with your trainer. Jumping without reins is good for ballance, and is usually done with the arms straight out to the sides - wich might actually help you to fold the correct ammount rather then grab face or mane to keep your ballance.

If you are jumping "ahead" be super careful, and work with your coach to correct this. There is a reason that coaches are allways on our backsides about jumping ahead - and I learned why a few years back, after my "aheadness" casued the youngster I was riding to have a rotational fall.... Not fun. Lucky to not be dead.

eventer_mi
Jul. 19, 2011, 04:11 PM
Oh, and what do you guys think of jumping gymnastics with no reins?? Not no hands, just no reins, so that I will have to hold onto the horse's mane??


Trust me on this, it's entirely possible to stand up in your stirrups over a jump whilst holding mane. I speak from experience. I'd take away your stirrups. Can't jump up a horse's neck without something to push against.

Far_North_Equestrian
Jul. 19, 2011, 04:37 PM
oooohhh... I LIKE this idea ^^^^
I still can't believe I was never forced to jump w/o stirrups. I'm going to have to try it once pony beast is broke enough to jump.

lstevenson
Jul. 20, 2011, 02:34 AM
As far as addressing the problem mentally, don't think "fold" or "lean forward" over the jump so much as "butt back." I still have to go back pretty often and address equitation even after years and years of riding and owning my own horses, and the number one reminder I have to give myself (for jumping, at least) is "butt back."



This is a very important point, as the only way you can follow the horse's jumping motion by closing your hip angle without getting ahead is to push your hips back.

OP, I just critiqued a video on my site of a rider doing pretty much exactly what you describe. Here it is: http://www.myvirtualeventingcoach.com/articles/eventing_video_9




http://www.MyVirtualEventingCoach.com
Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/pages/My-Virtual-Eventing-Coach/121366797928434)

GingerJumper
Jul. 20, 2011, 09:17 AM
I'm not sure jumping without stirrups would help this... She's getting left behind more than she's jumping ahead from the sounds of it.

Also, the "butt back" thing is right. It can be hard to learn though.

ltmac
Jul. 20, 2011, 10:33 AM
just be careful...YOU do not fold. The horse jumps up and you allow thier movement to close your hips. Over little jumps...this will not be much unless they are over jumping;) Grab mane and just let things happen a bit...if you start thinking too much and doing too much...you will end up over folding (ask me how I know:winkgrin:).

Yeah! I was always taught to let the horse's jump put you in position.

colliemom
Jul. 20, 2011, 12:26 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by bornfreenowexpensive
just be careful...YOU do not fold. The horse jumps up and you allow thier movement to close your hips. Over little jumps...this will not be much unless they are over jumping Grab mane and just let things happen a bit...if you start thinking too much and doing too much...you will end up over folding (ask me how I know).

Yeah! I was always taught to let the horse's jump put you in position.

And this is why I don't post very often. Everyone else always says what Iwant to say before I get to say it! :D

netg
Jul. 20, 2011, 12:58 PM
I'm not sure jumping without stirrups would help this... She's getting left behind more than she's jumping ahead from the sounds of it.

Also, the "butt back" thing is right. It can be hard to learn though.

I don't think she's getting left behind - the description sounds like throwing herself forward ahead of the horse over the larger jumps, which is why we've been giving descriptions of how to fold in the hips. I think it's the "standing straight up" making you think that? Standing and hitting the saddle mid-jump is usually due to timing and throwing oneself forward. "Butt back" helps stop that tendency to throw until the feel and timing are there. Excerpts of the OP to show why it seems that way (without seeing the video ourselves):


I am jumping it like it was a smaller jump and it looks like I am standing straight up!!! Then, I sat down to early and unfortunatley yanked the pony I was riding. :/ Next time jumping the higher fence, I did the same sit-straight-up thing and I sat down WAY to early, like right in the middle of the jump, but this time I didn't yank the pony.

Throwings oneself up instead of waiting for the horse = lack of balance, lack of fold, and sitting back down before the horse is done jumping. Upright/leaning back position mid-jump then getting thrown forward and banging into the saddle after landing is what would indicate getting left behind.

x.Eventing.x
Jul. 20, 2011, 01:04 PM
AppyGoLucky- Your right, I almost never jump ahead timing wise, its mostly getting left behind because I am not getting into position quick enough, and sitting down in the saddle too soon. If that makes sense.
lstevenson- My position is sadly, EXACTLY like hers.
archieflies- I just started using this trainer, and, in fact monday was my first lesson with her. She really stressed on how I really needed to close my hip angle. Also on monday's lesson, I was riding a very smooth and honest pony. Today, I am riding my usual mount who is young and still getting the whole jumping thing down, and has a springy jump. Weirdly, I jump a lot better on him because I guess I have more momentum and 'lift'. Anyway, now that I am SO off-track on what I was originally saying, when I jump without taking a lesson, I ride with barn buddies and usually my trainer watches and crits here and there, but doesn't give a full blown lesson.

Carol Ames
Jul. 20, 2011, 01:31 PM
gymnastics, bounces to an oxer/ triple bar. with eyes closed is good, if safe; put hands in"crease" of leg/ trunk; over the oxer keep back flat and head up ; makes the ground look not so far away on the landing side:lol:

x.Eventing.x
Jul. 21, 2011, 10:19 PM
Thanks!! I had my lesson on wednesday, and I rode the same pony that I did on monday, (the horse I was going to ride has a swollen gash over his hock) and my folding did improve!! The whole 'but back' thing did help a bunch !! I just thought 'but back! but back!' and I stayed with the horse better. :)

andyvee
Jul. 22, 2011, 10:09 AM
Many of these posters have given you excellent advise... But I think the best one mentioned core strength. You can practice all the exercises you want but if they don't focus on core strength your still going to feel like you can't quite master it.

When I started jumping my then 3 yr old dutch/old filly (first time i've really jumped a horse with that much power, and I had just come off an injury so I wasn't at my strongest physically) I felt like I couldn't go with her, she either jumped me out of the tack or I tried to jump to early to catch up with her and that didn't work either. I went on a mission and rode in my 2 point on her huge trot over and over, and forced my self to hold my hips up a bit higher than normal, and would carry my hands with the reins loose in my fingers held straight out in front of my body. I would ride like this until it hurt, then push myself a bit more. It worked like a charm. It didn't take long and I was able to stay with her really well, which was great because I didn't interfere with her jump any more and she could do her job well.

When you ride your 2 point, work on keeping your knee a bit straighter and hold it through there. You need to have good control of your hips, as that is what will cause you to fall back. If your doing it correctly you should feel a burn in the front of your thighs, back of your calves, and lower belly. It's important in order to stay balanced that you keep your hips right over your heels and keep your joints flexible to you can move and not become ridgid in your position.

Good luck.

Weatherford
Jul. 24, 2011, 02:21 PM
Good advice here.

Another wonderful exercise (see Anthony Paalman's old book called Training the Show Jumper) is to have your teacher set a small gymnastic (ground rail rail - 9' - tiny vertical (or x) - 18' - to a slightly bigger x that becomes the front of an oxer.

When you go to jump this, first make sure your stirrups are short enough to have a comfotable 2-pt position with your weight in your heels and your joints acting as springs to absorb any bounce in the horse's stride. You should be able to hold this position at all gaits without your butt (that should be stuck out for a slight arch in your back) ever touching the saddle. (Core strength, as mentioned abover) If you can't do that, don't do this exercise.

While you are holding this half seat, put your hands (holding the reins lightly) alongside the horse's neck - NOT touching it - NOT grabbing mane. This is the position your hands SHOULD be in for a following hand or release. Again, you need to be able to HOLD this position at all the gaits before you start the exercise.

So, now you are ready to go through the gymnastic. HOLD THAT POSITION - DO NOT CHANGE IT, do NOT lean forward - hold it through the entire gymnastic. The ACTION OF THE HORSE is what will "CLOSE" your angles and give you the correct jumping position. And if you are holding it steadily, your butt will NEVER touch the saddle, even when the horse is landing. And with your hands lightly holding the reins in that correct spot, you will never grab the horse's mouth.

This is a hard exercise. It's one I did as a child in pony club clinics in the 60's (with one of the world's greatest coaches - what can I say, I was lucky enough to live near the USET and our pony club took advantage of it!!), and am doing it again right now to get my jumping back in order after a(nother) long hiatus. My coach says it usually takes at least six weeks for a new student to do this correctly - so don't get frustrated!

So much of position depends on your shape - that is, do you have a long torso (then it is much harder to keep from sitting up too quickly) etc. This exercise will help you get stronger.

Good luck and report back!