Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: southern Arizona
Jumping with a horse is much riskier than not jumping. How much depends on what set of statistics you choose to accept, but the studies I've seen indicate 10-40 times greater chance of head injury (that is a 1,000-4,000% increase).
That doesn't mean folks shouldn't jump, but a prudent person would minimize their risk by taking lessons from a good instructor.
As mentioned, lots of English riders do not jump. There are a lot of things to enjoy about English riding that don't involve jumping. But if you do decide to jump, the 55 year old Dad & Granddad in me strongly recommends getting lessons from someone good. A single fall, even with a helmet, can change your life for the worse.
... Energy is an admirable thing, but the energy of stupidity seldom avails much..." - On Seats and Saddles (1868), Francis Dwyer, Major of Hussars (light cavalry)