Getting behind the motion on the way to jumps...

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Getting behind the motion on the way to jumps...

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    02-21-2011, 07:48 PM
Getting behind the motion on the way to jumps...

I have this habit of sitting too far back and riding a little behind the motion on the approach to jumps. It stemmed from riding stoppers...I learned that leaning = refusal so in my attempt to listen to my trainer and sit tall, I started getting too far back. Plus, for the longest time I was afraid to use my leg on Scooter and it's REALLY hard for me to get my leg on Leo, so I kind of overcompensated by staying really far back and pushing with my seat. I think. But anyways...if I stay back where I'm comfortable, then the jumps feels normal. But if I try and stay more vertical/forward, then I feel like I start jumping for the horse and dropping my hands and losing my leg.

Here's a video of me jumping a few weeks ago...
and again
[the refusal was 100% my fault...I picked a distance and started riding for it but then second-guessed myself and took my leg off Scooter. I'm getting better, I swear! And I love that you can hear my trainer yelling "body" at me on the way to the jump. It's like...if I'm not slightly behind the motion, then I curl up and lean and then we have refusals and I fall.]

And when I *tried* to stay further forward coming to the jumps
[please don't mention how horrible this was...I hadn't ridden in a while and this horse and I DON'T get along...but basically I failed haha]

And again, trying to stay still to the jump
[I trust this horse not to refuse...could that have anything to do with it? I was also riding with a different instructor for this lesson, just a one-time thing] demonstrate the position flaws I have when I try to fix my embarrassing video from the summer on Twiggy. I swear, I'm jumping more than she is!

I do it the worst when I'm on Leo [not in any of the videos, he's an evil appy haha] but I've notice that it carries over to all the horses I ride.

So bascially...Where *should* I be on the approach? What kind of visuals should I be thinking of on the way to the jump? How can I help break myself of this weird habit? I know at this point my trainer is just happy I'm getting OVER the jumps and she's working with me on other things...but this is just kind of bothering me.

Oh, and feel free to critique anything you want in the first two videos, but don't critique any of the horses because they're all school horses.
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    02-21-2011, 08:01 PM
OH. And if there are any exercises I can do while flatting, let me know! I often hack horses for my trainer after I ride and since I'm not in a lesson I can do whatever I want.
    02-21-2011, 08:43 PM
I do the same thing, and the issue actually is, the fact that you're sitting. Well, it is with me - my Coach wont allow me to sit on Nelson anymore because of this very reason. Believe it or not, it helps me greatly.

My Coach has be work on my "Functional Two Point" form whenever we work together - working on just staying over Nelson's center of gravity, and staying balanced over my feet, really helps me.
    02-22-2011, 11:28 AM
So I should try working more in my 2 point? I can most definitely do that on the flat, not too sure about jumping. I know that if I lean/am too far forward, both Scooter and Leo will stop...I'm not sure how that would transfer over to a 2-point but I'd rather not risk it, I'm kinda tired of falling off every lesson haha. But would working on my 2-point while flatting help at all? I'm also riding a hole shorter on my stirrups than I am in those videos at the suggestion of someone else. Not sure how I feel about it makes it easier for me to get my leg on Leo and if I focus on it, helps me keep my leg further back/underneath me, but if I stop thinking about it then I just get all bunched up. I think I'll try riding in it a few more times and if I still don't like it, I'll go back down a hole.

Here I am cantering on the I still too far back or is it just once I start jumping that things go awry?
    02-22-2011, 09:27 PM
If you are doing a correct 2pt and using your core you will still be effective and not leaning too far forward. Leaning too far forward is a problem, but so is leaning too far back, you need to find the balance inbetween and get more comfortable being in a forward seat, not 'leaning forward'
    02-24-2011, 12:06 AM
Sometimes to get your seat right you keep your seat the way it is and angle your body forward, like a hinge, so you won't get caught behind the motion. Just not too far forward, only a little bit or you will be ahead of it.
    02-24-2011, 10:00 AM
Originally Posted by gypsygirl    
if you are doing a correct 2pt and using your core you will still be effective and not leaning too far forward. Leaning too far forward is a problem, but so is leaning too far back, you need to find the balance inbetween and get more comfortable being in a forward seat, not 'leaning forward'

When you work on, what my Coach calls a "Functional Two Point", you learn to stay over your feet, balanced over your feet and you should just beable to "hover" there, without having to work at it.

Meaning, you wont loose your balance easily, you just be positioned there without falling forward, collapsing back into the saddle.

When I do my Two Point, I am balanced over my feet. Heels deep, absorbing my bodies weight. Legs around my horses girth, knee's are not pinching, not gripping. I am slightly out of my tack with my seat tucked under me slightly, activated core.

Upper Body is tall, chest is open and I imagine I am lifting my heart up.

Legs are soft and supple but activated, where every upstride Nelson makes, I am saying to him "Come up to me". Every up and down stride Nelson makes, my knee's are acting like hinges, they open and close, open and close.

Here I am in my balanced or "functional two point" while going down a hill

I know in this picture, it looks like I am in my saddle, but I am not. But I am a little too low for my liking.

Does that help?
    02-25-2011, 08:29 PM
That makes sense. I'll definitely start working on my two point more. I don't think I'll try it while jumping for a while, at least until it's more secure, but I'll definitely start working. I hate riding in it, though. Probably 'cause I was never taught how to properly until last year, and I spent the first 5 years sitting in a very deep seat [spent about 6 months riding no stirrups at the canter, haha] so it's strange to not be in the saddle. But I'll give it a try!

Just curious though...when in my full seat, is this more where I want to be?
    02-26-2011, 01:05 AM
You don't have to work on your "functional two point" over fences right now, so no worries :) :)

What my Coach had me do while I was workign with her for the first while we were together, was working on this form while on a large 20-30 meter circle while her standing in the center.

Just really focus on keeping your seat up and out of your saddle, but not much. Balancing over your feet, allowing the weight to flow into your heels. Keep your legs functional by asking your horse to come up into your seat every upstride your horse makes while at the canter.

Tuck your seat under you slightly, activate your core, open your chest with a tall upper body.

If I can do it, you can too :) I grew up riding with a very deep seat. I too have a very deep seat, so I understand how difficult it is to get accustomed to a "different way".

Some horses need that heavy seat, some horses cannot take it. Lets take my friends Draft X - she needs a lot of seat. She needs her rider to sit down on her back 5 strides in and drive her forward through the riders seat and legs. But, horses like Nelson who would get cut in 1/2 with a rider sitting down on their back driving, doesn't deserve or need a seat in that manner.

So, you have to learn to accomodate the horse you are riding. You should beable to achieve both seats, so that you can switch in a moments time, to accomodate that situation, that particular moment in time, to get the job done.

Also, as Ian Millar taught me when I rode with him was "A good rider conforms to their horse, a poor rider makes their horse conform to them"

So how effective are you, if every horse you end up riding, you use the same riding style, even if it is a horse, who doesn't need that way? Who doesn't go well that way? You, have to beable to change for that horse, that horses needs and to beable to know what buttons needs to be pushed, to get that fence done.
    03-09-2011, 08:43 PM
Or you could try a half seat. I'm not sure if you know what it is so I'll explain. Basically a half seat is like a functional two point, but not the same. Instead of just hovering over the saddle you are just flowing with the motion. You aren't sitting, but you are touching down on the saddle just as a reminder of an "I'm still here" type of thing. If it's done correctly your seat should just flow with the movement of the horse. I'm sorry I feel like I'm doing a terrible job explaining this. I can't find any pictures of me doing it as most of my pictures are of me jumping. So here's a video YouTube - HuntRdge1's Channel Note how she positions herself and touches down on the saddle with the horses step at the canter. That's how a half seat should be done.

This enables you to get up out of the saddle, but not completely give away your seat. Try it. It comes pretty naturally if you just are slightly forward and just above the saddle and then just let your body flow with the canter and it should come easily to you.

But good luck all the same!

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