Jumping with a clumsy horse?! - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 9 Old 10-31-2011, 06:21 PM Thread Starter
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Jumping with a clumsy horse?!

My new horse is a total clutz. He trips all the time over air. I eventually want to jump him.

I plan on starting him off with trot/canter poles. Hopefully that will help.

Anyone have any ideas for teaching him to pick up his feet?
The last thing I want to do is jump him and he falls flat on his face and injures himself and possibly me.

Any and all suggestions are appriciated

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post #2 of 9 Old 10-31-2011, 08:22 PM
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Cavaletti of course are invaluable training for the coordination of the strides/awareness of where the hooves are, needed for jumping.

You may have noticed that horses rarely trip when at pasture, even when they're running around, & same with Mustangs on the range; the "klutziness" starts when there's a rider: it's usually a rider issue.

You might want to observe your horse when he's at liberty & see how much he trips. :) Hope this helps!
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post #3 of 9 Old 10-31-2011, 08:32 PM
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As the owner of an equine klutz (who is just as accident prone and clumsy in the pasture as under saddle - sadly.) Use lots of trot poles, lots of cavelleti. WOODEN cavelleti - mine didn't mind knocking into PVC, didn't care for hitting wood. The key to dealing with the equine klutz is to teach him how to pay attention to where his feet are and what he is doing.

"Riding: the art of keeping the horse between you and the ground."
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post #4 of 9 Old 10-31-2011, 08:38 PM
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Trail riding in areas where he has to pick his way through rocks and over logs. He needs to be responsible for his own feet. If he figures out he can knock down poles in an arena instead of jump them, he might just opt for that. Put something solid in front of him and make him figure it out.

Also, make sure you are not interfering as his rider.

You just have to see your distance...you don't have to like it.
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post #5 of 9 Old 10-31-2011, 08:56 PM
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I should add that yes, it is his responsibility to watch where he's going, provided you're keeping out of his way. The way to hand him that responsibility is to allow him to pick his way through the rocks, choose his hoof placements on trail, arena, etc. - no micro-managing & taking over for him.
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post #6 of 9 Old 10-31-2011, 09:02 PM Thread Starter
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Yes except I forgot to mention he is psycotic on trials haha. And he also trips in the pasture. He's been a western pleasure horse for about 5 years now. But before that he was shown hunter and jumpers. I am looking into getting him back into that.

Would there be a specific kind of boot you guys recommend to prevent injuries?

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post #7 of 9 Old 11-01-2011, 11:37 AM
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Subbing! My mare is always coming in with bumps and bruises, pretty much fine under saddle but forgets how many legs she has...
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post #8 of 9 Old 11-02-2011, 06:40 AM
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First of all make sure the trim is correct. If your horse has too much of toe left it contributes into tripping a lot. Another reason horse may be (and most probably is) unbalanced and on forehand. My horse was tripping a lot and she had both problems: long toe (changing farrier helped quite a bit) and no balance/on forehand. Personally I didn't find cavaletti or poles to be very helpful if I don't ride correctly in 1st place, and neither they helped my horses to get off forehead. So instead I started working with the good trainer and we brought her off forehead and made her drive from behind and travel round (took number of months).

Just on side note, as long as your horse is heavy on front and not driving from behind you won't be able to jump successfully. As for boots you can look into Easyboots: I've been using Bare and Edge on trails for several years.

"Life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass: it's about learning to dance in the rain..."

"When we are no longer able to change a situation - we are challenged to change ourselves."

"How people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours."
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post #9 of 9 Old 11-03-2011, 09:28 AM
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Primo can be an ultimate klutz... we've run into the wall, mounting block, tripped on nothing.... yea... he's blond. lol.
I find a lot of this has to do with focus. If I have him working forward and change direction a lot he doesn't faceplant so much. We do work on poles and cavalettis as well.
There is hope, with all his Special Ed moments he jumps 3' pretty well... just not xrails.

If your horse says no, you either asked the wrong question or asked the question wrong

And God took a handful of southerly wind, blew His breath over it and created the horse
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