Critique horse and rider over XC Jumps please! :D

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Critique horse and rider over XC Jumps please! :D

This is a discussion on Critique horse and rider over XC Jumps please! :D within the Horse Riding Critique forums, part of the Riding Horses category

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    08-02-2011, 03:20 PM
Smile Critique horse and rider over XC Jumps please! :D

Hi all! I am very new to this site so all help is appreciated... Anyway, I just recently started leasing a 10 year old Quarter Horse. I took him to school XC a few days ago, and would love for you to critique him, and also my position! All advice and wisdom is welcome.
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    08-02-2011, 03:21 PM
Well gosh. I obviously need to work on formatting the posts... Haha sorry about that!
    08-02-2011, 05:26 PM
You need more of a release so make sure you are pushing your arms forward when you jump, you're pinching with your knee therefore your toe is pointing out and the back of your calf is what is on the horse. When riding think about allowing all of your weight to drop to your heels but still keeping everything relaxed, its difficult but something that is needed in order to follow the horse and keep that leg straight bc as of right now you are stabbing the horse with your heel.

You're a little forward in the second pic, try to wait for the horses jump, let him come to you, this has caused your lower leg to slide back and if the horse were to stumble or stop after the fence you would more than likely go flying over his head
    08-02-2011, 09:21 PM
Definitely give with your hands just that little bit more, not a drastic change though, really I just second what FoxyRoxy said above
    08-02-2011, 10:02 PM
Super Moderator
The main thing that I see that you need to address is your position in drop fences. While I like your leg position and the fact that you are "landing on your feet", your upper body is way off. When doing simple drops (no water) your upper body needs to be forward. The shoulders should be ahead of your hips.

Here, you have leaned way back and slipped the reins. This is a position used on drops when WATER is an element. You see, water (being denser than air) slows down the horses momentum....but only the parts that are in the water. The parts of the horse above the water will continue at the same speed you jumped in with. THAT is why it is so common seeing horses flip in the water. Then, you want your upper body back to help balance the horse when his momentum is changed. If you stayed forward, you might increase the chances of flipping.

Simple drops are not ridden the same way as water. Many times drops will have big jumps right after the drop. Slipping the reins as you did is inviting disaster.

The only photo I can find of me doing a drop is from this old omnibus (Due to my being a professional rider, my face is blacked out). This was a prelim jump. You dropped onto a steep slide that went approx 25 feet then dropped into water. If I had leaned back at the drop, I would have lost my steering for the rest of the jump.

    08-02-2011, 10:10 PM
Originally Posted by Allison Finch    

Simple drops are not ridden the same way as water. Many times drops will have big jumps right after the drop. Slipping the reins as you did is inviting disaster.

I recently schooled XC and was also told to slip the reins when doing a drop. Now I'm confused.

OP, pics look good. Everybody already covered the release. Only thing I have to add is picture holding an apple under your chin when coming off a drop. Seems to put your upper body in the right position.
    08-02-2011, 11:06 PM
Super Moderator
You will find people who teach you to lean back on simple drops. It is not what I teach. If you don't slip your reins, you WILL hang on the horse's mouth. If you do, you will be in a bad position to jump the B and C combinations often seen with simple drops.

This rider has her shoulders forward of her hips. Her lower leg is a bit further back than I would want, however. BTW, I can't believe she is jumping this jump in a fly mask

A good example of a drop. This is a combination fence (you can barely see B combination in foreground). Her shoulders are JUST forward of her hips. She is close to the perpendicular that I like. She did not have to slip her reins and is well set up for the next jump.

Every trainer may have a slightly different approach. Find what works for you. Leaning back and slipping reins for a simple drop is not what I ride or teach.

Not all riders lean back in water either. Below is a fabulous position that will do well with water. I only teach this to my more advanced students as if it is done poorly, it can be bad. Very forward but the rider will land braced onto his feet, catching his forward momentum. This was done because of a quickly upcoming fence where slipping reins would mean possibly missing the approach.

Does this make sense?
    08-03-2011, 12:27 AM
Thank you so much everyone! I really appreciate all the feedback and I will definitely use all of this knowledge!
    08-03-2011, 04:24 AM
I was learning drops on a very honest pony that was learning drops at the same time I was and there was NO way I could have stayed back jumping down it! I found it most helpful to jump 'forward' as if we were going over something rather than down, and then before landing have my lower leg forward to catch my momentum and stop me toppling over his shoulder.

That said I still only jump SMALL drops, because that's all I have access to. I want to make a bigger one in my paddocks but I don't own the property.

Off to the pony club grounds we go, methinks!

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