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How do you get better at stadium with no stadium?

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  • How do you get better at stadium with no stadium?

    I'm coming down from a x-country high right now because me and Juice had the BEST school at Fair Hill tonight. We did all the novice course (including the scary double bank, trakhner, and ditch combo) and we started schooling some of the more moderate training fences


    I feel Soooo ready to move up to Novice excpet for my stadium. I can ride a double bank, a half coffin, a drop 3 strides to a ramp (all that I did tonight) but god love me I can't ride a two stride stadium line to save my life.

    I get so tense in stadium and I just don't have the timing down yet. Also Juice has a great gallop out in x-country and just sort of gallops over the fences. In stadium our canter just isn't the same as it is on x-country.

    I keep him at a private farm that I love but there's no ring or indoor and we currently have 2 jumps set up (one of the other girls brought them and their just spaced out in the field we ride in). My trainer has been trying to find places we can go but people in the area are hesitant to have "outsiders" school on their farm.

    Is there anything I can do to improve my stadium jumping?
    http://www.clarkdesigngrouparchitects.com/index.html - Lets build your dream barn

  • #2
    Do you have poles? You can set up a course of ground poles and the two jumps to help you figure out timing, turns, and the correct canter. It's not quite the same, but it does help you learn to balance on the tighter stadium turns and see your distances.


    • #3
      First thing that comes to mind: Visualization. Seriously, it works. Your brain can't tell the difference between imagining it and actually doing it.

      Watch videos of good jumping rounds, and then sit and visualize doing it yourself.

      Obviously you need to find somewhere to practice for real, but this will help!
      ... and Patrick


      • #4
        Organise a truck and trailer for yourself. Haul yourself to lessons with other trainers.

        What sort of a trainer has no access to an arena or jumps ?


        • Original Poster

          Originally posted by KateWooten View Post
          Organise a truck and trailer for yourself. Haul yourself to lessons with other trainers.

          What sort of a trainer has no access to an arena or jumps ?
          easy there...

          I keep Juice at a racehorse lay-up farm. My trainer is a member of the racehorse industry who used to event. She's actually building an indoor (more so she can break baby racehorses but I can use it for whatever).

          I ride with another trainer who has an indoor and jumps etc but I can afford to ride with her about once a month. It sucks!

          I do have a truck and trailer, just don't know where to go!
          http://www.clarkdesigngrouparchitects.com/index.html - Lets build your dream barn


          • #6
            can you make a few jumps of your own? It is not too expensive if you keep it basic. You'll need a little bit of pressure -treated lumber, a circular saw and a drill.

            Get 8' long, half-round landscaping ties to use as rails - from Home Depot for 2- 4$ each.

            Get a 4"x4"x8' square post, cut in half will give you one set of 4 foot standards, (usually 8-10$)

            For the base of the standards, get two 1"x6"x8' plank (around 6$ each) , cut into 2 foot sections and screw to the base of the standard.

            Cost is about 25-30 $ for 1 jump with a couple of rails. Obviously you can paint and decorate as needed Flowers from the dollar store are a great addition.

            Good Luck.


            • #7
              Go to hunter/jumper schooling shows! It sounds like the height isn't the issue, so do a bunch of rounds at a low height to get a better feel for jumping in the ring.
              The big guy: Lincoln

              Southern Maryland Equestrian


              • #8
                Try heading out to a jumper show, maybe a 2'3 or 2'6 division. I have the same problem with my older horse. Except he jumps fine at home and at lessons, but despises stadium at events, just wants to go x country. Last year I took him to a jumper show, did 2 classes at 2'6 and 2 classes at 2'9. First round was horrible, each round improved. It helped seeing those same lines 4 classes in a row!
                Vince Dugan has some jumper shows, he's across from New Bolton Center.
                Of course, all the other exercises mentioned are important to do, but getting out there and repeating in a show environment was a huge help for me and at an unrated show, not much more $ than a lesson.
                Good luck! Good job doing the novice cross country at Fair Hill!!!! I hope to do it someday!!! Perpetual beg novice for me!


                • #9
                  Second Duckz idea.

                  I used to board at a more western oriented barn. The only "jumps" we had involved 2 pairs of real standards my dad built, and a bunch of lawn care timber rounds from lowes set on buckets. It didn't make much for real schooling, so I did all my course work at PC mounted meetings, and podunk local H/J shows.


                  • #10
                    There's a jumper show at Fair Hill the last weekend in August--maybe go and do a 2'6 class and then a couple of 3' classes? Irish Tulip has jumper shows and I think they might allow schooling. Fox Crossing I know allows schooling. Hunter shows would be fine, too--most of them go up to 3'.

                    Although--I don't know how much your lessons cost, but I suspect that by the time you haul somewhere, and either pay for 2-3 classes or pay a ring fee and pay your barn manager/ trainer, you may well be looking at the cost of a regular lesson.

                    So it might be worth building jumps--my trainer doesn't have a ring, either, just a flat field with jumps, but it is amazing how she can predict what the courses at an event will be like and replicate them. It doesn't always stop me from riding like an idiot, but at least I can think back to my lesson and know what I'm doing wrong.


                    • #11
                      So, if locals are hesitant to have an 'outsider' school at their farm, is there any means of making yourself an 'insider'?
                      If there is a barn/trainer that you really seem to click with, ask if you can come set fences for lessons, or for the trainer to school a horse- you will get a non-riding 'lesson', and learn how and where and why the fences are set. That will go a long way toward improving your stadium, if you pay attention!

                      You may also be able to tack up, cool out/untack, muck out, clean tack, or otherwise make yourself an 'insider' somewhere. If you have some skills such as the ability to fix the wiring on a trailer, it may be easier yet. It should take a few weeks of earnest dependability, and possibly a paid lesson with a liability release signed, but if you consistently show up to help twice a week or some such, I'm sure the trainer/barn owner will at some point consider you 'cool to school'.

                      I also think having fewer jump schools will be good for your horse's future soundness.

                      If you make yourself something to set up a gymnastic line at home, you can do a lot with a little, and not too much jumping. I would also make one more schooling jump, and set up a gymnastic that has a two-stride line (maybe trot in, jump an x, canter stride to small vertical, two canter strides to another vertical or an oxer), so your horse takes it at an appropriate novice speed stadium canter rather than a x-c gallop.


                      • Original Poster


                        I'm def. trying to get in with a few farms in the area! Foxcrossing lets us school in their indoor for a price which is great but that's taking a lesson + the price of an indoor. Ok every now and then.

                        I think I'm going to have to go on a scavenger hunt around the farm. My trainer used to be really into eventing, doing the Young Riders stuff and upper levels. I think you're right that if I even had one more jump I could make some good lines. Would it work if I found barrels or is that too x-county-ish?

                        Oh and I do have poles! I have PVC poles with wood poles inside of them
                        http://www.clarkdesigngrouparchitects.com/index.html - Lets build your dream barn


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Meredith Clark View Post
                          Oh and I do have poles! I have PVC poles with wood poles inside of them

                          If you have poles but just need standards, you can always pick up some of those blue and white plastic barrels for free (I'm told that you can get those for free at any of the commercial car wash places).

                          Facebook page


                          • #14
                            Hay bales work as standards too, if you can afford to sacrifice some.


                            • #15
                              barrels are a good thing to have for stadium! We have a set of blue and black barrels in the jumping arena and then some white ones out in the field.

                              Even if you may or may not have barrels in a stadium course at a show it gives you a solid jump to practice with at home. If you have any sort of boxes that would be a good thing! Just make sure there are no sharp/metal edges Honestly I don't think it matters what you jump as long as it's safe and how you organize your "course" will be what helps out your stadium

                              I keep threatening to steal some orange road construction barrels b/c I'm trying to desensitize my horse to scary things but sadly most of the construction is gone and they didn't leave behind any barrels for me.... haha
                              proud owner of a very pretty but completely useless horse (and one useful horse!)

                              Horse Thoughts


                              • #16
                                do you have poles? set up a line of poles and practice doing the add and the normal strides. like if it is normally a 6, do a 7, do a 6, do an 8, gallop a 5, do a 7, do a 6. the more adjustable he gets the better. plus it will help you with your distances.

                                i'm a hunter by nature, so i've noticed how many eventers can't see a distance to save their lives...i would practice doing xrails with a groundline and counding 3,2,1 in front of it. you want a nice medium-short distance for a jumper round. you also want to be not as far behind the motion as xc.

                                if you have any more questions (i have tons of ideas) feel free to PM me


                                • Original Poster

                                  Originally posted by reay6790 View Post
                                  do you have poles? set up a line of poles and practice doing the add and the normal strides. like if it is normally a 6, do a 7, do a 6, do an 8, gallop a 5, do a 7, do a 6. the more adjustable he gets the better. plus it will help you with your distances.

                                  i'm a hunter by nature, so i've noticed how many eventers can't see a distance to save their lives...i would practice doing xrails with a groundline and counding 3,2,1 in front of it. you want a nice medium-short distance for a jumper round. you also want to be not as far behind the motion as xc.

                                  if you have any more questions (i have tons of ideas) feel free to PM me
                                  I think practicing seeing distances is really important and I don't think I'd ever win one of those classic hunter games where you see who can see the furthest distance.

                                  However, I don't know what you mean by being "behind the motion" on x-country. Me and Juice are very insync x-country and I rarely get left behind on a jump.
                                  http://www.clarkdesigngrouparchitects.com/index.html - Lets build your dream barn


                                  • #18
                                    h/j trainer

                                    They will probably have a ring set up for schooling; even with only cavaletti, they can be a great help.
                                    breeder of Mercury!

                                    remember to enjoy the moment, and take a moment to enjoy and give God the glory for these wonderful horses in our lives.BECAUSE: LIFE is What Happens While Making Other Plans


                                    • #19
                                      Hey Meredith...

                                      There's a jumper show at Vince Dugans this Satruday. Tell me and I will shoot you an email of the prize list. Very affordable and close to you.

                                      Also I know a BUNCH of farms by Elkton that you can go school in their rings.

                                      But really get thee to a hunter or jumper schooling show and do 3-4 rounds per show.

                                      And I also agree with the course of poles on the ground. Really helps. (I was doing it last night and cursing every 3rd round or so. LOL)

                                      "Courage is not the absence of fear but rather the judgment that something is more important than fear. The brave may not live forever but the cautious do not live at all." ~2001 The Princess Diaries


                                      • #20
                                        I 2nd the plastic barrels, hay bales and anything you can find that is jumpable. How about black plastic pipe? Can you tell that I had some ghetto jump courses back in the day I would prop up pvc poles on the barrels or anything I could find.

                                        FWIW- I love Janice Dugan and this she is the absolute best at helping with stadium issues. I highly recommend her and wish I lived closer. She doesn't focus much on flatwork but has a great eye for fixing rider/horse issues and giving you a ton of really awesome exercises to help horse/rider improve.

                                        The prices are vey reasonable as well!