View Full Version : Degenerating riding...
27th Jan 2001, 01:39 AM
I'm having a really bad time at riding as it is, flat AND jumping. I fell off (again), over a tiny parallel, all because I got left behind. Luckily the horse I was riding didn't run over me - he just stopped and waited. Anyway, does anybody have any advice on WHEN to get into jumping position? That's my greatest problem - and my instructor keeps asking me to 'go forward', but when I do that, I'm concentrating too much on going forward that I get left behind. And fall off. And when I go too slowly, the horse can't jump properly. I'm really stuck here.... PLEASE help!
27th Jan 2001, 02:39 PM
Do lots more in forward position over poles and on the flat. Do enough so it becomes second nature and you no longer have to put all your effort in to thinking the position. That way tou can concentrate on other things. Are your stirrups short enough?
27th Jan 2001, 10:25 PM
I think you need to communicate to your trainer! Ask him/her that your want more practice on the flat! One cannot be good at jumping inless they have mastered the basics! I would remccomend you ask your trainer to spend more time on the flat. But you should be going into the two point when your right at the base of the jump!You will know how to do this with more practice! Trust me all it takes is patience! Good luck!
27th Jan 2001, 11:43 PM
Sorry if I've spelt your name wrong, I've a terrible memory.
Why not try riding round the school/arena in the cross country position, standing up in your stirrups, keeping your balance over your horses centre of gravity, its a real killer if you're like me, totally unfit, but it does wonders for your balance and strengthens your legs. When you've mastered this then try a small jump and you will feel (this is hard to explain) when the time is right to alter your position and also have the balance and leg strength to stop yourself from collapsing or being left behind. Another good idea is grab a lump of mane if you have to, as this will help to stop you giving your horse a bang in mouth if you lose your momentum.
I had a horse who was an absolute b****r at over jumping small fences and this was a big help to me, hope it helps you.
28th Jan 2001, 11:32 AM
Have to agree with Dizzy on everthing she says. I was taught this by my school instrutors. Also we were taught to go into a jump position just as we reached the fence at the point of take off.
28th Jan 2001, 03:22 PM
I think your first problem is that you may be trying a little to hard. This alone will make you tense and cause some of the problem you are having.
Secondly, the problem with jumping correctly is that you DON'T see where to get in to jumping position, you FEEL it! Unfortunately, people are generally taught to jump by sight and not by feel which is fine providing the horse takes-off exactly where the rider thought it would. However, if the horse stands off or puts in a last short stride then the rider will become completely out of balance with the horse. Feel should always be the prime sense in use when riding. If you are in a school environment on a trusted horse, try putting a up small jump and closing your eyes on the approach 3 or 4 strides away and concentrate on feeling what the horse is doing underneath you. You should feel at least two things: 1) the horse bunch its muscles as it reaches the takeoff point and prepares itself to jump rapidly followed by 2) the point where the front of the horse starts to come up for the jump. It is the point where the horse starts to come up that you start to fold to allow your body to absorb this upward exceleration. If you fold forward as the horse prepares to take-off it will transfer your weight to the horses front end and hamper it. Closing your eyes may seen a drastic thing to do but you will very quickly learn to feel the horse. I still at times when competing shut my eyes if i cant be sure of the stride to a fence, keep my leg on urging the horse forward and leave it to the horse. Sometimes, less is more. Give it a go! Let me know how you get on
29th Jan 2001, 12:56 PM
After you've been working for a while over trot and canter poles on the ground, you should be able to judge your horse's strides, and so, figure out where he's going to take off.
A couple of strides before take-off, you should begin bending forward from the hips, but keeping a good contact on the horse's mouth.
When you reach the take-off point, you'll feel the horse bending back over it's hindquarters, in order to gain enough energy to leap. When you feel this movement of the horse's back, go forward into jumping position.
If you read the thread 'why' you'll see my step by step guide to jumping! :)
ps. if you do get left behind, make sure to SLIP YOUR REINS!!! If you don't, you'll catch the horse in the mouth, and put him off jumping, or cause him to cat leap with his head in the air to avoid hurting his mouth!
29th Jan 2001, 07:23 PM
Are you folding too much for the height of the jump?
I don't do much jumping, but when away for a weekend course last year, I decided to ask for a bit of small jumping. We worked our way from one canter pole to several, then the last pole was put up to make a small jump, than more.
Instead of folding as I'd always done before, Sue the instructor (successful competitor at Grade A), said we should concentrate on our hands going forward to follow the horse, and our legs keeping forward. She said that for a small jump, keep your bum in the saddle. That all sounded strange to me, but it worked brilliantly. Keeping our hands and feet in balance shifted all our weight enough to relieve the horse's back, we felt secure and balanced perfectly. At one stage she had us clapping our hands together in front, over the horse's neck. That moves your weight gradually but enough for a small jump. I hasten to add, her horses are excepitonally well trained, only one of us (3) was cantering at any time, and it was an indoor school:)
She explained that most people hurl themselves forward as if the fence was 6' high, thus losing the balance. It was certainly a new approach for me, but I've never felt so confident jumping before.
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