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Answering the question "how high do you jump?"

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  • Answering the question "how high do you jump?"

    So I responded to an ad where someone was looking for someone to ride their horse a few days a week. She replied and it turns out my trainer knows her and the horse very well. She asked me how high I jumped, what division and who I rode. I replied honestly that I was currently in the 2'6 range. I have jumped fences of around 4' in height, and courses of about 3'3 (on a horse that was NOT a 3'3 horse, so it was like riding a much bigger course) I also asked my trainer if she thought that I would be a good match for the horse. She said of course I would be a fine rider for him (but the girl didn't know this. I asked after I sent the e-mail). I supplemented that with the fact that I had ridden rescues as well as mentioning the name of a school horse that she might have known from her time at my farm as well as my trainer's big jumper horse. It has been a few days, and I'm getting the feeling that I'm not going to get a response.
    I truly feel that I am not a "2'6 rider" though I am currently only jumping around 2'6. I HAVE jumped higher, but I feel that with horses, modesty is the best policy. It's much better to get on and have someone be like "you only jump 2'6? You rock!" than "uhh, I thought you said you'd jumped 3'6?". I honestly believe that if I had the opportunity to consistently ride a horse with fewer issues who was a 3' (+) horse, I could become very solid at that level reasonably quickly.
    So my question: Is it possible to convey that you are not, in fact, your average 2'6 rider, you just haven't had the opportunity to ride at a higher level (due to finances)?
    "If we we couldn't laugh we'd all go insane, if we weren't all crazy we'd all go insane." ~Jimmy Buffet
    "Pursuing the life of my high-riding heroes I burned up my childhood days..."-Willie Nelson

  • #2
    I can't answer your question, but I am in the exact same situation right now. I can go up to 3'6", but am stuck doing a measly 2ft on a bunch of naughty schoolies who jump 5-6x a week. Frustrating, to say the least...
    -JustWorld International-

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    • #3
      How about, my current horse jumps 2'6" but I have jumped as high as 3'6" it just depends on the capability of the horse. That way it shows you are willing to working withing the capability of the horse and that you have ridden many horses. I would also say, if this is true, your current horse is green and you are working on moving up or that due to your finances you haven't had the opportunity to work with a horse with that scope but you are willling to ride any level of horse. Just be honest and have the trainer call her, sounds like she would put in a good word for you!

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      • #4
        Story of my life. Age 12; trainer thought I had potential and put me over high junior courses on a horse that was not a high junior jumper. Age 12-17; stuck riding school horses for the next few years. Rode stoppers, rearers, buckers, bolters, greenies, ex grand prix horses, grand prix horses, ponies, etc...Age 17: Finally able to lease my peanut, show more, and work up to the Children's Jumpers.

        When people ask me how high I jump I say that I usually jump around a course of 3'-4', because that's what I school at home on my horse. I also tell people about the horses I have ridden, what I did when I was younger, and what trainers have said about me. Giving them references also helps. But you are right in staying modest. Telling about your show experience and stating why you are not able to go bigger, when in fact you can, is also important. Showing you are dedicated and willing to work to jump bigger is what people look for. Helped me.
        www.justworldinternational.org

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        • #5
          I say it depends on the horse, the trainer I'm riding with or how brave I'm feeling that day.
          Horse Show Names Free name website with over 6200 names. Want to add? PM me!

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          • #6
            I know how you feel. I want to do all the 3'6 eq/medal stuff, but that would be impossible with my pony or my friend's pony, (who I school up to 3'3 but won't match up to other, bigger, bette horses at shows esp. since I'm a little on the big side for her anyways). Maybe you should email her again, just stating your "qualifications" a little better and list more of your past experience?

            I show 2'6-2'9 but only because I can't afford to lease a horse that can do well at a higher level. The owner of the TB I'm training now had an ad up saying that her 4ft jumper needed an experienced rider to get him back into showing shape after sitting in a pasture for a year. I emailed her back, stating my current riding situation(that I show only 2'6-2'9 but only because I don't have a horse to move up on) as well as my overall experience(schooling ponies 3'3ish and info. about OTTBs I've trained in the past). I think that if I had just told her about what I currently do, I wouldn't have gotten a response back either. Her horse needs a secure, firm rider otherwise he will pull all the tricks in the book and dump you. He's also very strong towards fences and needs a confident rider to teach him to back off a bit. If he was my horse, I wouldn't feel comfortable letting a 2'6 rider ride him if that's all I knew about him.

            Anyways, I think if you state more about your experience, you may get a "second chance"? Good luck! I know exactly what kind of situation you're in!

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            • #7
              I know how you feel.
              Have jumped over 4' regularly, have jumped 3'6 regular, have jumped 2' regularly. All depends on the horse (or pony, as the case often is). When I am jumping only 2' regularly, its not like I couldn't go jump around 4' on a different horse, but it might take my eye a minute to catch up, ya know?

              Better to spend the extra 5 minutes with a little bit of background- which presumably you'd do upon meeting the owner anyway, right?

              So "I currently am doing Xft on X horse b/c I'm riding schoolies, I showed in Xft division in Xyear on Xhorse and won at X shows, I schooled Xft at home when I had my X horse..."

              As long as its all true you will be doing the right thing by both yourself and the owner.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by MLP View Post
                How about, my current horse jumps 2'6" but I have jumped as high as 3'6" it just depends on the capability of the horse. That way it shows you are willing to working withing the capability of the horse and that you have ridden many horses. I would also say, if this is true, your current horse is green and you are working on moving up or that due to your finances you haven't had the opportunity to work with a horse with that scope but you are willling to ride any level of horse. Just be honest and have the trainer call her, sounds like she would put in a good word for you!
                I agree! For those of us that have ridden for a long time and jumped at the 3'6"+ level, we all go through times where we're doing smaller stuff depending on what you have to ride at the time. My current horse and I showed successfully in the 3' Adult Amateur for years, but due to some soundness issues (he's getting older), I've moved him down to 2'6". That doesn't mean I'm suddenly only a 2'6" level rider though. It just happens to be what I'm doing right now.

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                • #9
                  I have jumped 5'3 ish.
                  scariest thing ever. but it was on my horse who I would trust with my life. I can do waaayyy more with my own horse than with another horse.
                  I would say that I do the medal maclay and jump 3'9 consistantly.
                  3'6 is the height where I can do any course easily. even though "easily" is a relative term, my horse and I both have lots of off days.
                  however, that isn't to say that I would be comfortable jumping 3'9 or even 3'6 on another horse, so its a difficult question.

                  I'd say that it really depends on the horse. But bottom line, you can't determine riding ability from the height of a jump.
                  Oldenburgs do it better

                  rip mystic puddin' 1984-2006
                  rip banacek 1992-2007

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                  • #10
                    I would say something along the lines of:

                    I'm most comfortable at xx, but I've jumped as high as XX and am still happy to ride at the lower levels, also, such as XX, depending on the needs of the horse.
                    CLIPclop Bodyclipping by Morgan
                    Serving North GA with high quality clips.
                    --> Just Press Start // '99 Oldenburg
                    --> Always The Optimist (reg. Simply Stylin) // '02 Thoroughbred

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Beau Cheval View Post
                      I truly feel that I am not a "2'6 rider" though I am currently only jumping around 2'6. I HAVE jumped higher, but I feel that with horses, modesty is the best policy. It's much better to get on and have someone be like "you only jump 2'6? You rock!" than "uhh, I thought you said you'd jumped 3'6?". I honestly believe that if I had the opportunity to consistently ride a horse with fewer issues who was a 3' (+) horse, I could become very solid at that level reasonably quickly.
                      So my question: Is it possible to convey that you are not, in fact, your average 2'6 rider, you just haven't had the opportunity to ride at a higher level (due to finances)?
                      Perhaps emphasize the fact that you are more advanced on the flat and have ridden a variety of horses but due to finances and a lack of suitable mounts you have not been able to regularly ride at the 3ft + level and you would be thrilled to have the opportunity to do so but are content working with horses at the lower levels as well.

                      I think there are alot of riders in your situation. And I agree that modesty is always the best policy.

                      Honestly, anyone who's opinion is actually worth anything in the horse world knows very well that the height which someone has competed at does not always coincide with competency as a rider overall. When someone tells me their a "3'6" rider it means diddly squat to me. There are plenty of 3ft + riders who are on packers that a monkey could ride.
                      Until I see them ride on the flat and how they school horses on the flat the fact that they ride at the 3'6 level is moot.

                      Not to mention a course of fences is just flatwork with a few fences along the way.
                      Last edited by LookinSouth; Apr. 4, 2009, 09:40 AM.

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                      • #12
                        I am totally with you!

                        I bought a new horse last year, younger, but with lots of potential, and of course he went and hurt himself. When we bought him we were going to sell my older "schoolhorse type" mare, but since this has happened we have just managed to keep her, so now I am riding a 17 year old 2'6" horse. I did manage to lease a horse for 2 days a month for three months and did get to do some "higher" (3'3"-3'6") jumping, kept my eye and my body ready for those bigger jumps.

                        Good Luck!
                        "Put forth your best, and you've already won."

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I often find that people will say they jump 3' or 3'6" but when I set a true 2'6" fence they gasp and say, "uh..can he jump that? It looks kinda big". Oye Vey......

                          Granted, I have ponies, so I do know that a solid 2'6" oxer on a medium does look like a substantial fence. This actually happened recently too. A young woman who was looking to ride came ot try a pony. She said she was jumping pony X (who I know and have ridden) around 3'. I just smiled and nodded....uh...yeah...not.

                          She didnt last too long on the small
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                          • #14
                            This is a difficult question to answer, because 'how high' you are jumping normally depends on the horse (or horses) you are riding at the time the question is asked. I agree that always being conservative is your best bet. "Embellishing" and then having someone ask you to ride above the level you are comfortable with usually doesn't end up going well. Then you will be known for just that - not being truthful about your capabilities.
                            How to answer? Given a horse with the ability, proper training and conditioning, I am comfortable at X'X". However, right now I am riding horses whose abilites are around X'X".
                            Your post indicates you are very truthful - don't loose that. It will stand you in good stead later, even though it might take you longer to achieve your goals vs. someone who 'embellishes'. In addition we all know that very bad (life altering) things can happen to riders who are overfaced. And these life altering things not only effect the rider, but also their family and friends as well.
                            Some days the best thing about my job is that the chair spins.

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