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Big *squee* - Finally jumped my mare!

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  • Big *squee* - Finally jumped my mare!

    I haven't posted much about riding my mare, it's been a "journey" to say the least, but I have to share this because I do NOT have a lot of confidence jumping anymore and I'm pretty much on Cloud 9. Miss Mare's been broke for a year (I backed and started her, and my trainer has been finessing her along the way) and I just finally worked up some nerve to pop her over some baby baby crossrails. Our first try was a bit of an "oops," as in, "oops, there is some greenery underneath that Gabby was not prepared to see," so we ended up clearing it a few feet higher than necessary. Heh. The next few tries over a (non-greeneried) crossrail were a little more anti-climactic and more suitable to the jump height (hop, hop!). Since then we've added a (still tiny - 18") vertical with half-barrels underneath, and a whopping 1'9" plain vertical to our repertoire.

    I am excited about our prospects together, as long as I can continue getting over my fear of jumping higher and higher!

    Any advice/suggestions on getting over my stupid fears? When I was younger and less breakable, I had no qualms about jumping. Since a bad fall, and learning that I am getting pretty breakable in my old age (ha) and not having health insurance, I'm a little more wary, a little less dare-y.

    So, here is us jumping a weensy xrail like it's something-not-so-weensy. PLEASE forgive my bad form, lack of release and jumping ahead like whoa. First time I've jumped ANYTHING in almost a year. I assure you our next attempts were more down to earth (I think) Any advice on what to fix and how to fix it?

    The Little Red Mare: French Curve

    and my non-horse blog: oh, rebecca!

  • #2
    Oh, Rebecca. Now I see where you got your username! Just get yourself some kind of tragedy insurance so that you can at least enjoy yourself, since clearly you're stressed about it.

    Congratulations on jumping your mare, and surviving the experience. I think you might need some placement poles to help your mare know when to leave the ground, as it looks like she left early. I also think you'd benefit from getting up in two-point early and grabbing mane. There is no shame in grabbing mane, but it's important not to catch the babies in the mouth. Your mare wants to jump right up, which is a good thing! Think about shoving your legs forward and your fanny back.

    I have a chestnut baby myself, and seem to have mysteriously gotten much older than the last time I had a baby horse. There were some baby humans in between. I just realized that the next time I show, I'll be in the 36+ division. I always thought of that as the rich old lady division. I don't feel old, nor do I feel rich... and here I am, still riding the babies. Go figure.
    Last edited by Justice; Apr. 26, 2010, 03:41 PM. Reason: I just saw the picture!
    Trinity Farm LLC
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    • Original Poster

      Yep, we definitely left a little early on that one, that was more of an "oh sh**" moment on both of our parts than anything else! I've seen her go in training and she's usually pretty good with finding her distances, and we gotten much better distances the subsequent times we've jumped!

      She definitely looooves jumping, I just have to get there myself I am a natural born worrier, and though jumping is really low on the worry-priority list (at least till I get out to the barn), it's still a concern. I just need to relax!
      The Little Red Mare: French Curve

      and my non-horse blog: oh, rebecca!


      • #4
        That's okay, you're out of practice. But good for you for again attempting what you love to do. The more you do it, the easier it gets! Even as we get older.
        “Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.”
        ¯ Oscar Wilde


        • #5
          No critique from me, just wanted to say congrats and keep having fun! I love your mare, she's adorable (and looks like she'll be a cute jumper to boot!)
          Who is John Galt?


          • #6
            No critique from me either. Just a really big, "good for you."

            \"If you are going through hell, keep going.\" ~Churchill~


            • Original Poster

              Thanks you guys!

              Paradox, I'd love to do (wee, tiny) eventing with her someday, once I get my heart to stay in my chest and not lodge itself firmly in my throat while I'm jumping. Someday, someday! She's as brave as the day is long, so I think she'll love it.

              Kay, thanks!! I'm rather enamoured of her myself, she is a sweetie and a half. I was not expecting a jump like this out of her, the first time I free jumped her I thought "oh dear. Glad I have that dressage saddle..."

              Thank you very much, Quinn She's got a home for life since she gave me some modicum of confidence!
              The Little Red Mare: French Curve

              and my non-horse blog: oh, rebecca!


              • #8
                Originally posted by ohrebecca View Post

                Any advice/suggestions on getting over my stupid fears? When I was younger and less breakable, I had no qualms about jumping. Since a bad fall, and learning that I am getting pretty breakable in my old age (ha) and not having health insurance, I'm a little more wary, a little less dare-y.
                Good for you!

                On this fear point. First, get her broke enough on the flat for the sake of your mind, if not hers. Then, if you don't ride her out of the ring, do that. Again, this is for your mind as well. You need to get used to uncertainty and big moves that don't necessarily result in crashes and death.

                But over fences, it may really help your 'fraidy-a$$ to teach her with a lot of work over single poles and also "cheat rails" around your fences. Don't be afraid of all the lumber near your fence. Your only job is to ride to the first rail, about 9' out from an X-rail or small vertical. The poles and your mare will take care of the rest..... while you grab mane, that handle God conveniently installed to help us out.

                The more you can make jumping "her problem" (not yours) and keep out of the way while getting to the fences, the faster she'll learn how to pack you around. She should always finish up a jumping school quieter than she began.
                The armchair saddler
                Politically Pro-Cat