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charging jumps?????....HELP!!!!!!

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  • Charging fences jumping

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    04-04-2009, 05:09 PM
Originally Posted by Spyder    
Good luck. I am sure that you will get something out of the move.

I agree with most of what everyone else already said. You need dressage lessons. If you're planning on jumping more than 2' you need REAL dressage lessons from an experienced dressage trainer, not a 16 year old girl. Not saying she's not a good rider, but there's no way (unless she's a phenom) that she's at the level you need to be doing to successfully navigate jumps of more than 2'. You really need to be able to ride at the higher levels of dressage - like MIEventer said - GP riders do 3rd and 4th level. You need to be solid in 1st and 2nd level to be able to be doing 3'6" and above. Plus there is SO much more to learn in jumping than point-and-shoot at the fence.

If your horse is charging, that's incredibly dangerous.

I'm going to repost something I wrote ages ago, that people have probably heard me say on here as well....but it applies to you too.

Sorry to sound like a broken record but just because your horse CAN jump 4'+ does not mean you and your horse SHOULD be jumping 4'+....

Bad trainers + beginner riders + 3'6" fences = SCARY/STUPID

From a post on one of my groups -
Worth resaying - the girl was 14, riding for less than a year, and was jumping 3'6" at camp and asked what everyone thought. EVERYONE thought it sounded pretty **** stupid.

My reply: Um ditto to everyone else out there. Sure - a push button horse pointed at a 3'6" fence w/a beginner rider can probably handle it and from the sounds of it, you didn't get hurt - THIS TIME. Here's some food for thought - how big was this horse's stride (in feet)? How many strides did
You need to the fence? Coming off the fence - between fences? What's the average horse's stride length? How does this horse compare to the standard hunter stride on course? How does the horse like to jump - chip, fly, just right and do you know the difference and why horses do what
They do? And how to correct it if you hit a wrong spot?

Counting 1, 2, 3 to a fence does not at ALL by any means constitute knowing where to take off. Anyone can count strides but how do you pick your distances? If you just trust the horse to do it for you, eventually he'll make a mistake and if you don't know how to ride that long spot or that half stride chip, you're in for a world of hurt. I've been riding for 25+ years, even went to Centenary and got my degree in training, and
Evented jumping solid obstacles up to 4', and that took YEARS to get to. Even now, my experienced show jumper that I will be showing professionally in the next year or two when he is ready is only doing a max of 2'6" - 3' showing and 3'6" to school on a regular basis, even though he's jumped 4'3" under saddle and 5'6" free jumped. There's a whole lot of technical work we are doing well before we start hitting the shows. And it sounds like that's a lot of what you are missing.

Like stridage and the difference in riding a vertical or an oxer or a triple bar or a 1 stride or a bounce and how all of that affects the rest of the course. Riding a gymnastic combination for balance and position and takeoff spots. Lead changes over fences, riding deeper to bigger
Fences, jumping up and down inclines, over liverpools, taking a broken line vs. a bending line vs. a straight line vs. a combination thereof that includes oxers, combinations, triple bars, and liverpoools.

Hey - I don't think anyone here is bashing you - we just all want you to know how stupid and dangerous what you’re doing is, and if you are comfortable with that, well then hey, that's your prerogative.

Final Thought: Christopher Reeves - AKA Superman - was jumping a well-trained horse that he had ridden before with an excellent trainer that knew what he was doing, and the horse was a good jumper and knew his distances and was able to just point at a fence and go. Look how tragically that turned out. Even the best horses make mistakes.
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    04-04-2009, 05:38 PM
WOW! Great post CJ8Sky! Now I am starting to sound like a broken record....

I don't think getting lessons from a 16 year old will do you any justice....
    04-04-2009, 09:10 PM
Green Broke
I started working with a horse a few months ago that had quite a problem with charging fences. He'd scramble around the turns and either hurl himself at the fence or take off on the landing. Seriously, not fun. Rushing is always a sign of anxiety. ALWAYS.

So I know you're probably getting sick of everyone saying "you need to try some dressage" but... well, "you need to try some dressage". Don't get me wrong, I absolutely love LOVE jumping. But I have a deep appreciation for dressage for several reasons, one large one being that it has a tremendous influence on my horse's jumping ability. If it helps you, don't think of it as "dressage". Think of it as a series of exercises that make his jumping much much better. So this horse that I started working with? Well, we started off with lots of "go's and woah's" so when I approach a fence I can make him slow or increase his speed. I worked on shortening and lengthening his stride so I can get to the distance properly. We've done lots of shoulder-ins/haunches in because they're crucial in teaching balance and flexibility. I taught him how to move off my leg and respond to it so I could fix it when he fell in in the corners or made it possible to come to a fence with a better approach. We do lots of turns on the haunches because it makes him get back on his haunches so he can make those tight jumper turns. I ride him on the bit so he can really engage his hind end, which is really the powerhouse of getting over a fence. Think about it... when you're approaching a fence you want to be able to get him balanced, right? Slow him down if he's too fast? Lengthen his stride if necessary? Etc etc? These are all exercises that are CRUCIAL to jumping well! I'm not saying you need to go to a special dressage trainer who will make you lengthen your stirrups and get a new saddle. But find a good jumping trainer who encorporates good "exercises" as tools to help you over fences.

Which brings me to.... your new trainer. This is probably a whole other post, but think about what you're doing and what's best for you and your horse. You need someone who is accomplished and able to teach you all the tools it takes to ride well. Is a 16 y/o able to do that? Maybe. Statistically? Usually not. If your horse can do 3"9, he is probably a very talented individual and you want to let him reach his full potential. This horse I told you about, just a few really good months of serious training and we're SHOWING 2"3 courses beautifully. He's so soft and responsive. Hasn't taken off with me in weeks. Just think about the things that people have said to you. Usually when people tell you to do more dressage, they're right.
    04-05-2009, 10:13 AM
Take it back to the basics. Trotting, transitions from trot to walk, trot to canter, lead changes, ect. If he's better at responding moving up/down from gaits, it's more likely he won't charge. Let's say your cantering at a small jump, and he bolts into a gallop. If you worked with him on not breaking his gait, he wouldn't do that. Or you were trotting and he went to a canter- same thing. Flat work flat work flat work. ;]
And go back down to small jumps until he stops charging. Way to dangerous to try anything big while you're still training him to do it right.
    04-05-2009, 10:26 AM
This horse I told you about, just a few really good months of serious training and we're SHOWING 2"3 courses beautifully. He's so soft and responsive. Hasn't taken off with me in weeks.
Again, I would far wrather see a horse and rider team doing 2'0" fences solidily, functionally, rhythmically, controlled - than seeing someone doing 3'0" fences unfunctionally.
    04-05-2009, 12:58 PM
You need to be careful and go back to the basics like everyone here has said. You can hurt your horse over the long term of jumping without proper form. I've had a friend who used to jump and she didn't know what she was doing. She would always jump very high without properly warming up (flat work, and starting small then building higher). Now the horse has bad hocks and knees and a jumpers back.
    04-05-2009, 04:24 PM
Lemme get this strait. Clippy is a 2nd level dressage horse and can do the most amazing dressage things I have ever saw. I took lessons about 4 years ago on a top level dressage horse named maggie and she was wonderful. And I have heard several times from people out at my barn calling me "ignorant" for not putting all the dressage into Clippy as I can. They just don't get that I don't like dressage, but I will do it until my horse does not charge jumps.

I went out today, and did some dressage work and a little jumping and at least he seems to be slowing down.
    04-05-2009, 04:31 PM
Glade to hear he's doing well =]
    04-06-2009, 12:41 AM
I'm sorry, but from the videos I have seen of Clippy, I see bery minimal to no dressage base...
    04-06-2009, 01:18 AM
I believe that Morganshow has been told several times that Clippy is nowhere near the levels she believes him to be trained. Unfortunately none of it has sunk in. Sorry, but I had to say it and Morganshow, please go watch a video of a 2nd level dressage horse and than compare it to Clippy. We can't learn from our faults if we don't admit that we have them.

I am also curious as where you got the experience to think you are ready to be jumping that high. You can seriously be impairing your horse's ability over jumps, which can be extremely dangerous. Especially on a horse that probably doesn't know how to properly handle his body in the first place. If you are interested in jumping I would suggest finding a qualified trainer and instructor in your area that can begin to point you in the correct direction. As many have said just because you CAN doesn't mean you SHOULD.

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