A little history first: So I've been off riding for about 8 months, recovering from an accident, so the little mare that I ride has also been off for that time as I'm the only one willing to ride her. But since January this year, we've both been getting back into working and getting fit again.
We've been mainly doing flatwork as the mare has a tendency, especially at the trot, of sticking her nose in the air and tensing her neck, so we've been working on getting her to relax, drop her head and work in a nice low outline.
And we started jumping a couple of weeks ago, nothing big, just 50cm (the mare is only a little over 14.3hh I believe). At first we had a lot of work to do at the trot, because she wanted to rush into the jumps but now she's jumping nice and calmy at the trot. But, the problem is now when I try and canter her into jumps, she will rush the last 4 or 5 strides.
So basically, I have two questions. Does anyone know of good techniques/exercises etc. to get a horse to canter calmly into a jump? I've considered doing basic circles over a single pole on the ground between two posts until she does that calmly and then move on to a small cross etc. Any other ideas? And then secondly, of exercises to improve a horse's jumping technique?