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How to improve jumping form - video

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  • How to improve jumping form - video

    My horse jumps infrequently, but seems to like it. Here he is shown free jumping (last time he did any jumping was about a month ago - also free, just playing around).

    Jumping a 2'x one stride to 2'x, then made it into a 3' vertical, and then a 4'3" oxer.


    What do I need to work on with him and what combinations do you suggest?
    Horses should be trained in such a way that they not only love their riders, but look forward to the time they are with them.
    ~ Xenophon, 350 B.C.

  • #2
    What's your goal for him (and for you)?


    • #3
      I know you didn't ask but...

      Hate to see round poles balanced on top of barrels and the top of the arena facing for free jumping or even jumping with a rider. He rolls one and takes it with him, tangles with it landing? You can get into real trouble both from injury and getting him scared.

      Far as what you did ask, what excercises can you work on? JMO but it's possible to do too much free jumping and have it not translate into much help with a rider. I'd do it occasionally, a few singles maybe, and concentrate on building the basics to get him under saddle by next fall. Ground driving and stuff like that.

      If he is already broke and older? I'd do it under saddle as much as possible, not free jumping where you can't help or correct.
      When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.

      The horse world. Two people. Three opinions.


      • #4
        He's a cute jumper! He just jumps more flat as opposed to round. If you plan on showing him in the hunters, you can do lots of things to make his jump more round and hunter-y: Grid work, steep crossrails, landing rails after fences and between all components of grid work, low wide oxers. But I'd suggest doing it with a rider on his back as opposed to free jumping. If you don't plan to show him in the hunters, I wouldn't worry about it too much. He still has nice form, and what looks like a smooth, solid jump.
        "It's hard to wait for something you know might not happen, but it's even harder to give up when you know it's everything you want."
        Blog | YouTube


        • #5
          Very, very nice horse. Now stop free jumping him before he teaches himself a bad habit or gets hurt.


          • Original Poster

            My goal for him is to find what he likes and has a natural aptitude for and develop him in that direction. Jumping seems like a definite part for him. I would like to set him up for a long happy useful career.

            His flatwork is solid. I mostly ride dressage and we work on adjustability of strides in all gaits, lateral work, etc. He has been shown dressage and did quite well.
            I am not accomplished nor brave when it comes to jumping. I have jumped him up to 3' and 2'6"-2'9" courses with supervision of an experienced trainer. Regular lessons are not an option at this time. Clusoe is excellent - steady, forgiving, point and shoot, relaxed, even tempo. I, on the other hand, practically tremble on the way to the fences - the higher, the more anxious I am. I am not the person to correct over fences, the best I can do is set him up

            Find - I understand your concern, and actually the poles were NOT round and were set in a small space; the flat area of the "cup" was 2' vs. 2" but still not an 8' section, also at least one end was set close to an end of the pole - touch it and it would fall off the wall, like in a jump cup. I don't have proper jump equipment as I do not jump, have to make the best of it with what I have.

            Don't worry about the too often part - he is free jumped no more then 1-2x a month, usually low easy stuff for him. Up to 3'6" seems super easy and fun - I can set up the jumps and sit on the mounting block and he will put himself on a circle and go 'round and 'round over the fences. I let him do that for 3-5 each way and then put them down as poles. Just to let him have some fun and a chance to stretch a bit.

            I will try as suggested. Any other input welcome.
            Last edited by mzm farm; Mar. 1, 2012, 01:07 PM. Reason: missed info
            Horses should be trained in such a way that they not only love their riders, but look forward to the time they are with them.
            ~ Xenophon, 350 B.C.


            • #7
              Originally posted by mzm farm View Post
              Clusoe is excellent - steady, forgiving, point and shoot, relaxed, even tempo. I, on the other hand, practically tremble on the way to the fences - the higher, the more anxious I am. I am not the person to correct over fences, the best I can do is set him up
              Why are you worried about giving him a career in jumping, then? It doesn't sound like you enjoy jumping. He seems lovely.. a nervous rider can take all the good qualities he seems to have away.
              "It's hard to wait for something you know might not happen, but it's even harder to give up when you know it's everything you want."
              Blog | YouTube


              • #8
                If you don't enjoy jumping, what about a partial lease to someone who does and would be good for him for it? He does seem to enjoy it.

                But honestly, he's going to be happy no matter what he does if you just love him, treat him right and stuff some treats down his pie hole from time to time. I did the same worry about giving him a job that he loved thing. Honestly my horse just wants me to love him for him.

                And if you want to get comfortable jumping, don't push it too high too fast. Take your time. LIttle stuff, get confident and move up. Don't be hell bent on jumping anything higher than you feel confident with!