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fixing a chipping in habit with lunging over fences?

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  • fixing a chipping in habit with lunging over fences?

    my mare has developed a habit of chipping in before (almost) every fence. it's made me form some really bad habits, namely from having to ride very defensively to make sure she actually goes over the jump and doesn't just stop.

    she had a lot of time off over the summer due to my internship and summer classes, so i'm trying to get her back in shape now. i was wondering if anyone had advice for ways to help her with this from the ground. she doesn't do it when i 'lunge' her over the jump (just a bridle and line, no other tack), and since she tends to come up to it a little more slowly, she rocks back and pushes off a lot better, even to the smaller jumps.

    i haven't been doing this much, but she seems to think it's a fun little game. is this actually going to be helpful for getting her to figure out where her feet are/not chip in/rock back and push? or am i deluding myself? ^_^
    Pisgah: 2000 AHHA (Holsteiner x TB) Mare (lower level eventing, with a focus on dressage)

    Darcy: 7? year old Border Collie x Rottweiler? Drama Queen extraordinaire, rescued from the pound in Jan 2010

  • #2
    No offense but if she doesn't do it on the lunge, sounds like it might be a rider issue. Most errors in my experience really boil down to the quality of canter I'm carrying to the fences. Granted sometimes my mare is being a poop and ignores me, but generally if I can get her on that nice canter pace the distances happen.

    It sounds like you just might be holding her a bit before the fence, as opposed to letting her canter flow. Do you count a rythym as you're going around?

    Comment

    • Original Poster

      #3
      i know it started as a rider issue! but she also did it with the BO (who is my trainer-ish) so like i said, i think at this point it's a habit as well. i'm taking lessons on a school horse to fix me, because i know it was a confidence issue for both of us by the end of the spring. i didn't know if she was going to actually go, so i would do all kinds of crazy unnecessary things, which made her more unsure, which made me more unsure! thus, the lessons on a school horse i haven't been jumping her much since like i said she's pretty out of shape, but i have done some work with ground poles, and she does funky stuff with those too. she would just prefer not to use her hind end
      Pisgah: 2000 AHHA (Holsteiner x TB) Mare (lower level eventing, with a focus on dressage)

      Darcy: 7? year old Border Collie x Rottweiler? Drama Queen extraordinaire, rescued from the pound in Jan 2010

      Comment


      • #4
        Doing Gymnastic lines under the watchful eye of an experienced trainer will do wonders for your horse and you. Properly set up and built up as you both progress will make jumping single fences much easier. Lunging your horse over fences without a rider is easy for your horse because it is just your horse, no rider to interfere with her way of going.
        Things happen for a reason...so when I reach over and smack you upside the head, just remember...you gave me a reason!

        Comment

        • Original Poster

          #5
          Originally posted by RedRyderKy View Post
          Doing Gymnastic lines under the watchful eye of an experienced trainer will do wonders for your horse and you. Properly set up and built up as you both progress will make jumping single fences much easier. Lunging your horse over fences without a rider is easy for your horse because it is just your horse, no rider to interfere with her way of going.
          we're working towards this

          that's why i was lunging over fences - to make it easier for her. i want to have the vet come out and flex her too, just to be _extra_ sure there's no soreness.
          Pisgah: 2000 AHHA (Holsteiner x TB) Mare (lower level eventing, with a focus on dressage)

          Darcy: 7? year old Border Collie x Rottweiler? Drama Queen extraordinaire, rescued from the pound in Jan 2010

          Comment

          • Original Poster

            #6
            Originally posted by RedRyderKy View Post
            Doing Gymnastic lines under the watchful eye of an experienced trainer will do wonders for your horse and you. Properly set up and built up as you both progress will make jumping single fences much easier. Lunging your horse over fences without a rider is easy for your horse because it is just your horse, no rider to interfere with her way of going.
            we're working towards this

            that's why i was lunging over fences - to make it easier for her. i want to have the vet come out and flex her too, just to be _extra_ sure there's no soreness.
            Pisgah: 2000 AHHA (Holsteiner x TB) Mare (lower level eventing, with a focus on dressage)

            Darcy: 7? year old Border Collie x Rottweiler? Drama Queen extraordinaire, rescued from the pound in Jan 2010

            Comment


            • #7
              If she is fine on the lunge but not fine with a rider, I'm not sure if further lunging will change how she goes with a rider?

              Second the idea of gymnastics, also placing poles and rolling the groundlines out a bit can help a lot.

              Comment


              • #8
                Getting a good stadium canter has been a real struggle for me. I let my long striding boy get too long and we often end up with a chip. He's trying to re-balance himself as we get to the fence on too long a stride. I need to get a more rhythmic, balanced canter, getting him between my hand and leg without killing the engine.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by emirae1091 View Post
                  we're working towards this

                  that's why i was lunging over fences - to make it easier for her. i want to have the vet come out and flex her too, just to be _extra_ sure there's no soreness.
                  Even as you're bringing her back into shape, you can still practice gymnastics (the jumps don't have to be big!). Start out by cantering over poles. That will help train your eye and hers. Also, make sure that you're keeping the canter the same as you come into the jump. If you're holding her back while you're trying to find your distance, you may be shortening the canter to the point where what appeared to be a perfect distance is now super-long, making a chip her only feasible option.

                  Comment

                  • Original Poster

                    #10
                    Originally posted by riderboy View Post
                    Getting a good stadium canter has been a real struggle for me. I let my long striding boy get too long and we often end up with a chip. He's trying to re-balance himself as we get to the fence on too long a stride. I need to get a more rhythmic, balanced canter, getting him between my hand and leg without killing the engine.
                    i'm pretty sure this is what i do :/

                    i lunged her over a couple today, and then got on and did a lot of transitions, and got a really good canter, and she was awesome. she chipped once or twice and it was definitely my fault, but we were both perfect when we came back around.

                    going to do more pole work tomorrow
                    Pisgah: 2000 AHHA (Holsteiner x TB) Mare (lower level eventing, with a focus on dressage)

                    Darcy: 7? year old Border Collie x Rottweiler? Drama Queen extraordinaire, rescued from the pound in Jan 2010

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by riderboy View Post
                      Getting a good stadium canter has been a real struggle for me. I let my long striding boy get too long and we often end up with a chip. He's trying to re-balance himself as we get to the fence on too long a stride. I need to get a more rhythmic, balanced canter, getting him between my hand and leg without killing the engine.
                      This!!! Work on the canter. I have the same problem!!

                      Comment

                      • Original Poster

                        #12
                        did some work today with ground poles. i think a lot of it is she's just lazy ^_^

                        i longed over it first and that seemed to help her work on it without me messing things up. she was better today with me on her than she has been in ages.

                        slow and steady i guess!
                        Pisgah: 2000 AHHA (Holsteiner x TB) Mare (lower level eventing, with a focus on dressage)

                        Darcy: 7? year old Border Collie x Rottweiler? Drama Queen extraordinaire, rescued from the pound in Jan 2010

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Also -- look on the bright side. Chipping in to a long distance is smart -- it is much safer than taking off long out of a strung out canter. Be thankful she's got a good sense of self-preservation and focus on fixing that canter so you lessen her opportunities to show what a smart girl she is.

                          Comment

                          • Original Poster

                            #14
                            Originally posted by fordtraktor View Post
                            Also -- look on the bright side. Chipping in to a long distance is smart -- it is much safer than taking off long out of a strung out canter. Be thankful she's got a good sense of self-preservation and focus on fixing that canter so you lessen her opportunities to show what a smart girl she is.
                            you know, sometimes i wish she was a little less smart ^_^ i love her to death. she's definitely my horse of a lifetime. but on the days i just want to bum around on a trail ride, occasionally i ask myself why getting a warmblood cross mare was a good plan
                            Pisgah: 2000 AHHA (Holsteiner x TB) Mare (lower level eventing, with a focus on dressage)

                            Darcy: 7? year old Border Collie x Rottweiler? Drama Queen extraordinaire, rescued from the pound in Jan 2010

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by emirae1091 View Post
                              did some work today with ground poles. i think a lot of it is she's just lazy ^_^

                              i longed over it first and that seemed to help her work on it without me messing things up. she was better today with me on her than she has been in ages.

                              slow and steady i guess!
                              You're getting some great advice here and answering with "she, she, she."

                              The most critical advice I'm seeing-- and with which I agree wholeheartedly-- is that if she's correct or improving on the longe then this is something that gets fixed under saddle. Concluding that she's just lazy out of this set of experiences isn't going to help. If she IS just getting sluggish, then it's more likely that she's dead to your aids than a character flaw in the horse. The answer is the same is the advice you're getting plus you achieve it by adding a tap with the whip when she doesn't respond to "go." This shows that responding to the aid is non-negotiable.

                              There are other exercises that work for me but looking at this thread, I think the first observation is to let go of saying "she" and focus on you.
                              Shut up! You look fine! --Judybigredpony
                              Ms. Brazil

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Knowing my struggle with this, my trainer worked on having me get a nice, uphill balanced canter during a flat lesson the other day. Tough to get a forward, powerful balanced and supple canter that I felt would be good coming to a 3 foot fence. BUT, it's only because I really haven't been asking him for it. I'm content to have a lazy, relaxed canter in dressage, and then blast around stadium trying to make up for a crappy canter. XC is easy, lots of impulsion!
                                Amazing sport, this. All the seemingly disconnected pieces of dressage, stadium and XC at Beginner Novice become more and more connected as I try to move up.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  All the seemingly disconnected pieces of dressage, stadium and XC at Beginner Novice become more and more connected as I try to move up.
                                  Amen, brother Riderboy!! Very true and I struggle with my show jumping canter as well. In my last jumping lesson, my trainer said: "you would never tolerate crappy transitions like that in your dressage . . . so why do you allow it when you are jumping?" Ugh. She's right---when I am doing dressage I expect my horse to be working from behind and in good balance. Somehow, when we are jumping, I let my horse go around without demanding the same level of connection because (I guess) I'm more focused on getting over the jumps. When what I need to be thinking about is my danged CANTER. This sport, never a day where you feel like you have mastered it---that's for sure!

                                  Comment

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