Jumping horse

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Jumping horse

This is a discussion on Jumping horse within the Horse Health forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category
  • Overworking jumping horses

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    02-17-2011, 02:31 AM
Jumping horse

I'm not sure if this would be classified under health or training or another area, so sorry if it is wrong.

I just started my horse in hunter. He's never jumped before and we're taking it slowly, working with ground poles and 18" cross rails. Soon we'll try a 2'. I've read in different places that for the sake of the horse's legs, you should really only jump 1-2 times a week. Would that also apply when training a horse to jump? He is an ex-race horse, but 100% sound. He's 10. I'm hoping if he continued to do well we can try showing this summer, but while he learns -very- quickly, I don't want to overwork him nor go less than he can handle. Thoughts?
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    02-17-2011, 03:33 AM
Really hard to give a general answer as it depends on so much, how many times are you going to jump each session? How wide of a circle do you give him before you come back to the jump? How much time off after a few jumps before you do it again.

For example, a rider who is going to put up a 3' jump, do tight circles and jump over and over again until the horse is exhausted could not do this often. However if you are sensible and take it easy I don't see why you could not jump lower jumps at a sensible rate 3-4 times a week, but that also depends on how often he is exercised in general and how fit he is. My fully trained previous horse, I would jump her 5 times a week, she was never lame the entire time I had her, but she was also incredibly fit and used to her workout routine.

The best thing to do with any training in my experience is listen to you horse, when he has had enough end on a good note and call it a day. And don't push your horse to your goals, judge it on his ability and how he is doing.
But as you are asking this question in the first place, I am sure you will be fine.
    02-18-2011, 06:02 AM
Personally, when I am training a horse to jump, I like to do a little bit everyday. Think of it like studying for a test. Which works better, cramming the night before or doing a little studying everyday for a week ? That being said you don't want to jump the crap out of your horse everyday. About 10minutes of jumping per day if you are going to jump more than twice a week, so they learn the muscle memory. Once the horse is better trained you can go to working longer and harder, but for less days.

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