My appendix mare used to rush fences like it was her only job in the world. Lol She'd see a fence and away she'd charge. If I stopped her, it only made her more tense and braced. I did as exactly as Spyder and MI Eventer are trying to get across. I can't count the number of times I had to do a circle or two before the next jump. My trainer told me I was not allowed to pull on her face, just circle her while trying to encourage her to slow down by the change in my body. Once she did, she was allowed to walk. Boy was that an experience for me at the time. Here is my horse, blasting towards this fence(not out of control, but not steady by any means), and I was only allowed to slow her with my body, otherwise leave her face completely alone. The more times I did that, the fences got boring the more boring I was, and in time I learned a very special and important skill. Riding with my body, not my hands, and teaching my horse to feel me. |
She'll never look like a slow-mo hunter type mover, but now she stays right with me due to the communication of my body, which taught her how to relax.
I mean - come on! He took a 5 in 3 and a 4 in 2 - he was really powerful! SO, Dorothy had me working via my body, not hands - to controll him.
Remember, our horses come down to our seats. We NEVER ride hands first, we should always ride seat first.
Seat into Legs into Hands to Soften.
When I was shown that, it sure did shine a whole new light. Watch GP riders - they all ride with their seats.
I went to Chicago and watched George Morris give a clinic - he taught the same thing. Seat into Legs into Hands to Soften -
AND!! A big thing he stressed, is that if your horse is not well balanced, is not following the steps in the training scale - if your horse is not calm, relaxed, you have no business going over fences.
DRESSAGE is essential - Jumping is Dessage with speed bumps, so incorporate your movements between the fences.
I hope that helps you Spastic Dove. And yes, I firmly believe - because I've seen it first hand - that the exercise with the stopping does not help us achieve a well rounded, quiet, relaxed horse.
As I heard George Morris stress - that we must follow the training scale first and foremost. Once we've achieved Relaxation, Rhythm - then start incorporating fences.
So many riders want to rush to jumping - because agan - "I JUMP SO THEREFORE I AM" throwing out the ideals of essential dressage as our foundation to back up the jumping. If we don't have the basic fundamentals of dressage, then we shouldn't be jumping.
If we build a house, we want to start out with a strong and sturdy foundation first. Without that, our horse will not be structurally sound, will not withstand time, and will deteriorate before we want. Same with riding - we want to start out with a strong foundation first, then build the rest around that - so that our horses are structurally strong, that can withstand time - to have a well rounded, healthy, happy mount.
If our horses are speeding around - we are missing parts of the training scale. If our horses are blasting through the course - stopping isn't going to do diddly squat - where fundamentals of dressage will help to fill those holes.
Get what I am saying?