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Critique on both me and my young horse

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  • Critique on both me and my young horse

    Hi everyone, I'm hoping you guys could do a critique- it's nice to have (many) other sets of eyes to take a look since I ride without a trainer at home (thank you boyfriend for kindly taping).

    The horse is my 4 year old Thoroughbred, he's shown he gets very bored and uninterested with smaller jumps (first crossrails, then a 2'3" vertical), so I raised it to 2'6" for this ride. He gets ridden 2x a week when the ground is appropriate, we sometimes just jump one of those two days, and it's never more than 2 or 3 jumps just to teach him and get him more comfortable.

    This is the only riding I do right now, and I haven't ridden consistently ridden in months, so I know my riding is definitely rough!

    I'll tell you what I get out of watching the videos. I see that my leg could be maybe a little more secure as we canter (although my saddle fit is really uncomfortable for me in the leg- it's a short flap and I need a long for my hip-thigh length, could that be part?), it just doesn't look completely still, although that may also be this next part. I also see that as I get closer and push his stride open a little more, I push with my seat (awful old habit I had gotten rid of) instead of keeping quiet and just holding my leg on. I think my shoulders could be back a bit more on the approach and definitely after, that was another of my really awful habits. The last thing I notice is that I have recently been sitting down too early on the landing- do you guys think so too? I think I could keep my butt out of the saddle a pinch longer, and then sit up straight as soon as we are completely landed, so when he gets a tiny bit excited about his first lead change after a fence, I'm up and ready to keep pushing forward instead of trying to pull.

    I think my horse is doing well for his first couple of 2'6" fences and that is needs finesse. I just wanted to have him confident and comfortable during his first session over this height, so I just kept a firm feel of his mouth and didn't try to mess with anything. The only thing I did was keep him straight and open up his stride as we got closer when I saw a good distance for him. He tends to get a little flustered when the striding isn't right and he would rather add in a half stride and chip than take it long. I think eventually once he really has the hang of it and can go on the flat in a balanced manner on a loopy rein, I'll let him figure out how to carry himself on his own to the jump. But for now this seems like a good way. Any tips or suggestions, or further critiques?


    First jump

    Second jump

  • #2
    From what I can see, I might be wrong, your legs are in quite a forward position which will hinder you in getting up out of your saddle and staying there. You are also pumping with your upper body, possibly because your legs aren't underneath you, and this is causing you to jump ahead (just before takeoff you throw yourself forward).

    He's very cute and obviously tries hard, but he's not yet balanced and using his back end (one reason I think that he doesn't do his changes and getting quick on landing). Is it possible for you to ride him more than twice a week? At 4, he's ready to be schooled more on the flat and really start learning how to use himself. Once he's nicely balanced and using himself from back to front, you will probably also find it easier to not run or push him in front of the fences.
    Go Ahead: This is a dare, not permission. Don't Do It!

    Comment

    • Original Poster

      #3
      Originally posted by eclipse View Post
      From what I can see, I might be wrong, your legs are in quite a forward position which will hinder you in getting up out of your saddle and staying there. You are also pumping with your upper body, possibly because your legs aren't underneath you, and this is causing you to jump ahead (just before takeoff you throw yourself forward).

      He's very cute and obviously tries hard, but he's not yet balanced and using his back end (one reason I think that he doesn't do his changes and getting quick on landing). Is it possible for you to ride him more than twice a week? At 4, he's ready to be schooled more on the flat and really start learning how to use himself. Once he's nicely balanced and using himself from back to front, you will probably also find it easier to not run or push him in front of the fences.
      Thanks! I really think my saddle is a big part of my leg. I feel like I constantly have to fight to put it where it should go. I always feel like my thighs and knees are going forward on the flap, and I have to fit to bring them back to where they belong. I didn't seem to have this issue so much in my old trainer's County, which had a forward flap. The pumping with my seat is an issue by itself though- I definitely need to work on that! I think once I have a saddle that accomodates my leg, I'll be able to focus more on improving instead of fighting to keep things where they are.

      He definitely needs more balance, he's improved a lot and we're still working on it. On the flat he canter is really improving with lots of circle work and spirals to get him to bend, move off leg, and push forward with his hind. But over fences I haven't tried to mess with it yet as he is still learning balance over the jump itself. I don't want to overface him and make him sour. He will do a change though, he did it in the second video and has done it on the flat when I've asked through a balanced canter. Any tips on improving the balance at the canter in general? He has moments where I feel a nice canter there, where I feel pushing with the hind end more than dragging. At the moment, he tries to push the outside shoulder out and tries to get on the forehand when we work on getting a nice bend at the canter. I correct that by really having my outside leg on and outside rein steady, and doing a TON of inside rein half-halt/inside leg push, then release, then ask again. He is definitely improving, but that's his weakness in the meantime. Any suggestions?

      I really can't ride him more often than 2x a week right now. Like I said, I can ride only when the ground is decent enough to safely do so. I wish I could go out and do flatwork 4-5x a week and pop over a couple jumps once every week, but the ground where I live is completely flat and we're in a very low spot. After even a short two hours of light rain, I can't ride for the next couple of days because they'll really sink into the ground. We do not have a ring (that would be a Godsend) or a trailer to haul out to someone else's ring (but hauling out 4x a week wouldn't be doable anyway). So I kind of have to deal with what I've got.

      Comment


      • #4
        Sounds like you are on the right track I also like to leg yield (on the long wall, on a circle and in and out across the diagnol), haunches in and out, shoulder in etc to help build up the back engine. I do a LOT in the walk as I find I can then concentrate on what the horse is doing more than in the trot if they become unbalanced.

        With my mare, we also lunged jumped her once or twice a month. I found this really helped with her confidence as she had to figure out the jump by herself and regulate her pace herself(she gets a bit spooky though). My trainer uses it on all of our greenies and it's amazing what it does for their confidence and rideability to and after fences.
        Go Ahead: This is a dare, not permission. Don't Do It!

        Comment


        • #5
          He's cute!

          What stands out the most to me is your riding after the fence. I hate the way you let him canter and trot around unbalanced after the jump, in the first video. I'm not saying that you need to come back and snatch the reins and be abrupt with him to get him back, but let him canter a few strides away, then work on re organizing. Try and get him back a bit more, and circle if you need to. When you bring him back to the trot, you let him "run" all strung out. Don't let him stop until you get the trot you want and it is calm and collected. 2Xs a week isn't very much to ride a baby horse, so you need to do all the flatwork you can. Flatwork is the key to jumping success.

          Comment


          • #6
            Some random ideas

            I ride unbalanced horses in shoulder-fore a lot. I like the spiral exercise too, in addition to leg yielding (assuming one can keep control of the outside shoulder and the horse doesn't just fall out).

            I agree with the poster who said master everything in the walk first.

            To strengthen the canter, and the aids (both the use of and then the understanding by the horse), I would also go back to transitions between and within the gaits, eventually adding canter-walk-canter transitions. (Eventually) counter canter is a good exercise too.

            It is going to be very difficult to acheive a stronger canter with 2x a week rides, imo. I understand your restrictions, but am not sure how you are going to progress. I find 2x a week is more for maitenance than progress.

            What about doing a little cavaletti work (unmounted) to help him find himself and learn how to adjust to a fence?

            If the saddle is unbalancing you and causing the leg position then I would fix that first. After the fence sit up a bit more. Let your body balance help bring him back.

            Fun! You make me want to go riding.
            DIY Journey of Remodeling the Farmette: http://weownblackacre.blogspot.com/

            Comment


            • #7
              I'd be concentrating on flatwork (canter spiralling in, then out, as well as transitions.). I'd also trot jumps using trot poles going into it to make him wait and rock back. You aren't really teaching him anything by cantering jumps like this. If you must canter, I'd do it on a fairly large circle (not so big that he can get fast, but not so small that he is really unbalanced. Get in a light half seat, and trot in, land in a canter, and maintain light bend, and use a half halt after landing to balance, and try to keep your body still. The circle will balance/slow him.

              Comment


              • #8
                I agree with everyone's posts, flatwork is always the key to jumping success but I totally hear you when you say you can't ride as often because of the ground. With that being said I like what 'jetsmom' said about trot poles and trot jumps. They are great tools to get a horse to slow down, rock back and think about the jump instead of just rushing over it. Try a trot rail in front of the jump and a canter pole on the landing. If you're worried about sitting up too soon (which I don't think you're doing too bad- if anything your instincts are making you do this because you want to land and get your horses canter back. Which is especially hard on a young one in a field with no ring/barriers to help).
                Still if you want to work on holding your position after the jump I remember an exercise I learned in a great clinic by World Champion Gail Greenough years ago. She set a rail on the landing side (9ft away) of a jump and made us aim to keep our half seat and release till after the rail. (with a young horse start with the rails on their own, then after the jump a few strides away then try exercise with it about 9ft from back of jump). Now you may not be able to keep your release for so long what with having a huge open field in front of you and a young horse under do but it's a great exercise to improve your timing of when to sit up.
                With all that being said I think you need to work on making your horse 'adjustable' after the jump. So land and do something. Make a circle, (alternate once do a circle to the left then to the right), do a transition (back to the trot or walk or halt- but remember it's not back to any old trot its a balanced working trot or a collected trot, if u choose to walk or halt follow it with a transition back to a trot and do a circle. The idea is you want your horse to land and think, land and say what's next, not land and canter off into the sunset. A little structure to your landing and approach (do a circle or a transition or trot poles on the approach) will make all the difference.
                Good luck!!

                Comment

                • Original Poster

                  #9
                  Sounds like you are on the right track I also like to leg yield (on the long wall, on a circle and in and out across the diagnol), haunches in and out, shoulder in etc to help build up the back engine. I do a LOT in the walk as I find I can then concentrate on what the horse is doing more than in the trot if they become unbalanced.

                  With my mare, we also lunged jumped her once or twice a month. I found this really helped with her confidence as she had to figure out the jump by herself and regulate her pace herself(she gets a bit spooky though). My trainer uses it on all of our greenies and it's amazing what it does for their confidence and rideability to and after fences.
                  He's not that very good at moving off the leg yet (is forward off the leg, but still takes work to move sideways off the leg), so we are doing a good bit of leg yielding both ways down the long side for practice. I push him outside around our turns in the corners so he isn't tempted to drop his inside shoulder, and we also leg yield when we switch directions arcross the diagnols. I ask him to do bending here and there, but when he doesn't get it right he gets a bit frustrated so I think leg yielding is a good start to get him more sensitive off the leg before I use rein to get a bend more often...am I correct in thinking this? We do each of those things it at the walk and the trot, but practice it a lot at the walk first. I don't think he would understand the haunches in/out or shoulder in yet. I'm not that good with it either though, but had practiced it a little on my older TB that is much more broke on the flat.

                  I tried to set-up a free-jumping chute so he could figure out how to approach and handle a jump without me on him, as this had really worked with another green horse I had, but I don't have enough jump standards and poles to set up the chute, and when I used a tape he went under it.


                  What stands out the most to me is your riding after the fence. I hate the way you let him canter and trot around unbalanced after the jump, in the first video. I'm not saying that you need to come back and snatch the reins and be abrupt with him to get him back, but let him canter a few strides away, then work on re organizing. Try and get him back a bit more, and circle if you need to. When you bring him back to the trot, you let him "run" all strung out. Don't let him stop until you get the trot you want and it is calm and collected. 2Xs a week isn't very much to ride a baby horse, so you need to do all the flatwork you can. Flatwork is the key to jumping success.
                  Good point- I should definitely reorganize afterwards. I did it after one fence and circled him, then got a good trot, but didn't the majority of the time (including these videos). Another point very important to when I eventually put a course together! I did circle him at the trot in the second video and got back to a less rushy trot, but definitely could have kept working him at the trot. Thanks- I wouldn't have thought of that.


                  I ride unbalanced horses in shoulder-fore a lot. I like the spiral exercise too, in addition to leg yielding (assuming one can keep control of the outside shoulder and the horse doesn't just fall out).

                  I agree with the poster who said master everything in the walk first.

                  To strengthen the canter, and the aids (both the use of and then the understanding by the horse), I would also go back to transitions between and within the gaits, eventually adding canter-walk-canter transitions. (Eventually) counter canter is a good exercise too.

                  It is going to be very difficult to acheive a stronger canter with 2x a week rides, imo. I understand your restrictions, but am not sure how you are going to progress. I find 2x a week is more for maitenance than progress.

                  What about doing a little cavaletti work (unmounted) to help him find himself and learn how to adjust to a fence?

                  If the saddle is unbalancing you and causing the leg position then I would fix that first. After the fence sit up a bit more. Let your body balance help bring him back.

                  Fun! You make me want to go riding.
                  What exactly is shoulder-fore? I have never heard of that but if it works, I would definitely like to try it! I will definitely do the transitions to help the canter. I really wish I could ride him more often than this, but until the weather is better more often, I'm not sure if I'll be able to. I will be able to get a second ride in today and tomorrow at least. I'll have to check our forecast for the rest of the week. I am saving my money to purchase a new (used) saddle and have my current one for sale to help fund it. The sooner the better, I really hate this saddle.


                  I'd be concentrating on flatwork (canter spiralling in, then out, as well as transitions.). I'd also trot jumps using trot poles going into it to make him wait and rock back. You aren't really teaching him anything by cantering jumps like this. If you must canter, I'd do it on a fairly large circle (not so big that he can get fast, but not so small that he is really unbalanced. Get in a light half seat, and trot in, land in a canter, and maintain light bend, and use a half halt after landing to balance, and try to keep your body still. The circle will balance/slow him.
                  I'll see if I can fit the jump in a spot that allows me to do a circle, the lower long side of the field is quite wet and he still sinks in a little just cantering straight there so I'd like to keep the circle where it is dry. I did try trot poles going into a jump, but the poles seemed to get him more worried/unbalanced and trying to run-out. Is it just because it was making him work more, or what? I want to keep his confidence up, but definitely get more balance.

                  Comment

                  • Original Poster

                    #10
                    Originally posted by CoriC View Post
                    I agree with everyone's posts, flatwork is always the key to jumping success but I totally hear you when you say you can't ride as often because of the ground. With that being said I like what 'jetsmom' said about trot poles and trot jumps. They are great tools to get a horse to slow down, rock back and think about the jump instead of just rushing over it. Try a trot rail in front of the jump and a canter pole on the landing. If you're worried about sitting up too soon (which I don't think you're doing too bad- if anything your instincts are making you do this because you want to land and get your horses canter back. Which is especially hard on a young one in a field with no ring/barriers to help).
                    Still if you want to work on holding your position after the jump I remember an exercise I learned in a great clinic by World Champion Gail Greenough years ago. She set a rail on the landing side (9ft away) of a jump and made us aim to keep our half seat and release till after the rail. (with a young horse start with the rails on their own, then after the jump a few strides away then try exercise with it about 9ft from back of jump). Now you may not be able to keep your release for so long what with having a huge open field in front of you and a young horse under do but it's a great exercise to improve your timing of when to sit up.
                    With all that being said I think you need to work on making your horse 'adjustable' after the jump. So land and do something. Make a circle, (alternate once do a circle to the left then to the right), do a transition (back to the trot or walk or halt- but remember it's not back to any old trot its a balanced working trot or a collected trot, if u choose to walk or halt follow it with a transition back to a trot and do a circle. The idea is you want your horse to land and think, land and say what's next, not land and canter off into the sunset. A little structure to your landing and approach (do a circle or a transition or trot poles on the approach) will make all the difference.
                    Good luck!!
                    Thanks so much- that was extremely helpful! I always wonder though- is it 9' out from the middle of the jump if it's a vertical (as in, measuring out 9ft directly from the jump pole), or is it 9' out from the placement pole (I had placement poles maybe 1' out from the middle of the jump on both sides)? How far out should the trot pole be (in the front), and is that measured from the center? Thanks!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      It is not as angled as a shoulder in. I googled and came up with this (will probably explain better than I can): http://www.horsechannel.com/horse-ex...lder-fore.aspx

                      You need straightness to see the canter you want. This will help develop his carrying power in the rear.


                      Hope that helps!
                      DIY Journey of Remodeling the Farmette: http://weownblackacre.blogspot.com/

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Crown Royal View Post
                        Thanks so much- that was extremely helpful! I always wonder though- is it 9' out from the middle of the jump if it's a vertical (as in, measuring out 9ft directly from the jump pole), or is it 9' out from the placement pole (I had placement poles maybe 1' out from the middle of the jump on both sides)? How far out should the trot pole be (in the front), and is that measured from the center? Thanks!
                        9' from the middle of the actual jump for the landing side. So basically you'll have trot pole, 9', jump, 9', placement pole Just be careful that you don't jump the jump AND the placement pole (yes, I've seen it happen with a youngster and it wasn't pretty!) Keep the actual jump small, just in case.
                        Go Ahead: This is a dare, not permission. Don't Do It!

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Crown Royal View Post
                          I'll see if I can fit the jump in a spot that allows me to do a circle, the lower long side of the field is quite wet and he still sinks in a little just cantering straight there so I'd like to keep the circle where it is dry. I did try trot poles going into a jump, but the poles seemed to get him more worried/unbalanced and trying to run-out. Is it just because it was making him work more, or what? I want to keep his confidence up, but definitely get more balance.
                          Have you practiced trot poles without a jump at the end? If not, start with just two. Adjust distance so he can do a nice, easy, controlled trot through. Then when he is comfortable with that, add another pole, then another so you have 4 poles or so. When he is smoothly going through those, add a small crossrail about 9 feet after the last pole.
                          It will slow him down, and make him wait (and you as well). It will improve his jump much better than just cantering a jump will. I'd land, make a large circle, bringing him back to a trot on the far side of the circle, to give you time to organize, and go through again. Make sure you are straight going into it. You can spread your hands open just a little, to make a chute, if he gets wiggly. Alternate going right one time after landing, and going left the next. I'd also alternate halting, or walking after landing so he won't anticipate what you are going to do. Even land and halt in a straight line occasionally.

                          Comment

                          • Original Poster

                            #14
                            Originally posted by TrotTrotPumpkn View Post
                            It is not as angled as a shoulder in. I googled and came up with this (will probably explain better than I can): http://www.horsechannel.com/horse-ex...lder-fore.aspx

                            You need straightness to see the canter you want. This will help develop his carrying power in the rear.


                            Hope that helps!
                            So is the shoulder-fore basically an inside bend? And the shoulder-in is a more dramatic inside bend with the horse on three tracks? I know what the shoulder-in looks like, but is that a good way to describe it How exactly should I be asking for the shoulder-in (I know the article said shoulder-fore is just a less intense shoulder-in so ask with less strength in your aids), and how should I ask for the haunches in/out?

                            I also think this video was very helpful and I might try that at all the gaits, especially when asking for the canter since he has trouble bending in general and picking up the right lead.
                            Last edited by Crown Royal; Apr. 3, 2012, 03:17 PM. Reason: clarity

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              You might want to check out http://www.equestriancoach.com/ they have a series called fundamentals of flatwork that explains how to do lateral work like leg yield, shoulder in, haunches in, etc for beginners, intermediate and advanced. Still work on transitions first this will get him more attuned to your leg and rein aids.

                              For videos on understanding rein aids and exercises to improve them check out http://www.equestriancoach.com/conte...-one-rein-aids
                              For the same but with leg aids:
                              http://www.equestriancoach.com/conte...t-two-leg-aids

                              Try the trot poles on their own first, once he gets used to them then try them in front of the jump and probably start with one in front of a jump, doing 3 trot poles on the take off might be to advanced right now for your horse.
                              Here's a video on cavaletti's too, it shows how to introduce them to a horse why to do just one and then three not two( they tend to jump them if inexperienced). It may be a bit advanced for right now but it will give you the gist of what cavaletti's or trot poles are used for, how to set, how to incorporate them with a jump, etc) http://www.equestriancoach.com/conte...ert-de-nemethy

                              Trot pole is usually 9ft in front and behind of jump (not ground rail) so stand with the back of your leg touching the jump then take 3 steps (each step should be 3 ft long). Bernie explains all this in the video above. So should check it out sometimes getting the visual really helps when setting jumps.
                              Good Luck

                              Comment

                              • Original Poster

                                #16
                                9' from the middle of the actual jump for the landing side. So basically you'll have trot pole, 9', jump, 9', placement pole Just be careful that you don't jump the jump AND the placement pole (yes, I've seen it happen with a youngster and it wasn't pretty!) Keep the actual jump small, just in case.
                                Thank you! I will try that, with a small vertical just in case.


                                Have you practiced trot poles without a jump at the end? If not, start with just two. Adjust distance so he can do a nice, easy, controlled trot through. Then when he is comfortable with that, add another pole, then another so you have 4 poles or so. When he is smoothly going through those, add a small crossrail about 9 feet after the last pole.
                                It will slow him down, and make him wait (and you as well). It will improve his jump much better than just cantering a jump will. I'd land, make a large circle, bringing him back to a trot on the far side of the circle, to give you time to organize, and go through again. Make sure you are straight going into it. You can spread your hands open just a little, to make a chute, if he gets wiggly. Alternate going right one time after landing, and going left the next. I'd also alternate halting, or walking after landing so he won't anticipate what you are going to do. Even land and halt in a straight line occasionally.
                                He has done trot poles without a jump and was 100% fine with that. He trotted quietly through sets of 2 and 4 at a steady rhythm and picked his feet up nicely through them without trying to avoid them. I only had 2 trot poles set up in front of a small crossrail and even after numerous attempts to get him to trot through quietly and jump the crossrail, he was not comfortable with it. I tried lightly riding him through, I tried a stronger ride and pushing him through, and kept supporting him to the jump, but he was getting more and more frustrated and would start hitting the ground rails and either not even bothering to go over the crossrails (just pretty much trot through it) or start trying to run-out (and when that didn't work because I wouldn't let him, he would just push into the standard). I rode him into and through it straight with wide hands like a chute, like you suggested, and kept at it through it and up to the jump. Wasn't working. None of those sessions were successful and were getting him flustered and making him lose confidence, so I stopped trying that exercise. Everything was spaced correctly. I would love to try that exercise, but may have to stick with one trot pole in front of a vertical and see how that works.

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                                • Original Poster

                                  #17
                                  Originally posted by CoriC View Post
                                  You might want to check out http://www.equestriancoach.com/ they have a series called fundamentals of flatwork that explains how to do lateral work like leg yield, shoulder in, haunches in, etc for beginners, intermediate and advanced. Still work on transitions first this will get him more attuned to your leg and rein aids.

                                  For videos on understanding rein aids and exercises to improve them check out http://www.equestriancoach.com/conte...-one-rein-aids
                                  For the same but with leg aids:
                                  http://www.equestriancoach.com/conte...t-two-leg-aids

                                  Try the trot poles on their own first, once he gets used to them then try them in front of the jump and probably start with one in front of a jump, doing 3 trot poles on the take off might be to advanced right now for your horse.
                                  Here's a video on cavaletti's too, it shows how to introduce them to a horse why to do just one and then three not two( they tend to jump them if inexperienced). It may be a bit advanced for right now but it will give you the gist of what cavaletti's or trot poles are used for, how to set, how to incorporate them with a jump, etc) http://www.equestriancoach.com/conte...ert-de-nemethy

                                  Trot pole is usually 9ft in front and behind of jump (not ground rail) so stand with the back of your leg touching the jump then take 3 steps (each step should be 3 ft long). Bernie explains all this in the video above. So should check it out sometimes getting the visual really helps when setting jumps.
                                  Good Luck
                                  I don't know if you meant for me to see the whole video of the rein and leg aids (it was a preview) but don't worry, I do know what the leg and reins do (pulley, indirect, direct) and how to get basic responses. I'll have to see if I can view the whole thing. I also have experience riding over cavaletti and having them before jumps (did this with my two ponies when they were starting, as well as my jumper), but for some reason it hasn't been working when combined with a jump with this particular one.

                                  I will have to look at the advanced lateral exercise videos, maybe they will be helpful.

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                                  • #18
                                    I figured you knew what leg and rein aids were just thought some of the exercises shown on the video may be helpful to try on your young horse. As for the cavaletti video it explains a great exercise/ way to introduce trot poles to a horse that again I thought you might find helpful. That's all meant no offense.

                                    Another idea to tackle the cavaletti and a jump issue is to try the three trot poles between the standards then you can slowly set up the middle pole into an x-rail. (try it without landing rail- that exercise I mentioned before would be best to do a little down the road once your horse is comfortable with jumps with trot poles)

                                    For example first 3 trot poles back and forth between standards then take away third rail so it's just a trot in pole to an x rail (could even do it with just one side of x up) then as he get more comfortable you can make the x into a vertical.

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                                    • Original Poster

                                      #19
                                      Originally posted by CoriC View Post
                                      I figured you knew what leg and rein aids were just thought some of the exercises shown on the video may be helpful to try on your young horse. As for the cavaletti video it explains a great exercise/ way to introduce trot poles to a horse that again I thought you might find helpful. That's all meant no offense.

                                      Another idea to tackle the cavaletti and a jump issue is to try the three trot poles between the standards then you can slowly set up the middle pole into an x-rail. (try it without landing rail- that exercise I mentioned before would be best to do a little down the road once your horse is comfortable with jumps with trot poles)

                                      For example first 3 trot poles back and forth between standards then take away third rail so it's just a trot in pole to an x rail (could even do it with just one side of x up) then as he get more comfortable you can make the x into a vertical.
                                      Unfortunately I can't view all the exercises in the video- I'd have to purchase that for $9 or pay the yearly subscription. Can you explain the aids for shoulder in, haunches in, and haunches out? I'd love to use them.

                                      He is already comfortable doing trot poles alone, I'll have to try putting just one in front of a small jump. He gets quite bored with crossrails!

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                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by Crown Royal View Post
                                        Unfortunately I can't view all the exercises in the video- I'd have to purchase that for $9 or pay the yearly subscription. Can you explain the aids for shoulder in, haunches in, and haunches out? I'd love to use them.

                                        He is already comfortable doing trot poles alone, I'll have to try putting just one in front of a small jump. He gets quite bored with crossrails!
                                        I'd do a series of trot poles, and then to a pile of poles between the standards 9 feet away. When he trots through that, raise it to a VERY tiny xrail that he can easily trot over. Do it several times. Then raise it a little more. The fact that he gets worried by trot poles then an x, makes me think that either the distance is too tight (maybe not 9'), or he actually is not as comfortable jumping as you think, and is using speed when cantering up to it because he is nervous. Often horses will rush jumps to get it over with, when they are nervous, and people think the horse is excited to be jumping, not realizing they are actually nervous about it.
                                        Go back to teeny jumps, 9 feet away from trot poles. Something you can walk over. Double check your trot pole distances, and make sure they aren't so close together that he is really having to collect, or too far, so you are running through them. Should be a nice, easy, (on the slower rather than faster side), trot.

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