Advice on how to get my horse back into jumping

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Advice on how to get my horse back into jumping

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  • Irish sport horse back into work
  • Getting a horse to get back into work

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    07-31-2011, 05:53 PM
Advice on how to get my horse back into jumping

I ride a 17.1hh Irish Sport Horse for a friend. He is 19 years old and used to hunt and compete in showjumping competitions when he was younger. I'm not 100% sure of his history as he is not mine, I only ride him but as far as I know the only reason he stopped hunting and showjumping was because he was sold to his (now) owner. I started riding him in October 2010 and we were jumping 2'6" pretty regularly. In November/December time he got very severe laminitis meaning he was on box rest until March when we slowly began bringing him back into work. He has had a few problems since with thrush, recurring laminitis and dust allergies but he is now doing well and I am doing a lot of canter work with him. I want to start jumping with him again but I need some opinions. When he used to showjump, he was jumping 1 metre+ courses so my problem is that he finds small jumps very, VERY easy. I just want to know how slowly I should take it. Obviously I know I should build up slowly but it's just too easy for him. What do you think?
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    07-31-2011, 07:15 PM
Well, I would start slowly anyways. The horse needs to be reconditioned. If he ignores the small jumps, just do some ground pole work. You will see how fast he remembers things and how in shape he is. I think it shouldn't take too long to get him back jumping if he's been doing it all his life, but taking your time with it will be the best thing. If he gets bored with what you set up for him don't hurry on to the next higher level, just take it slow =)

Also, maybe keep it to once a week or so and build up. If he's 19, jumping is going to slowly be bad for him because of old age, especially if he's been jumping most of his life. I know that there are some horses who jump way past 20, but if you want the horse to do so too then you need to keep things slow. I've ridden older jumpers, and you'll be surprised by how fast they go once they go.

Other than that, I wish you the best of luck. Congrats to the horse for getting over his illnesses, and I think as long as you keep things in moderation you should be fine. You can also consult a local trainer or coach to help you maybe, nothing beats hands-on advice!

Hope this helps =)

fitness, flatwork, horse, jumping, laminitis

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