How often is too often.
 
 

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How often is too often.

This is a discussion on How often is too often. within the Jumping forums, part of the English Riding category
  • Will jumping a horse too often damage its legs

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  • 1 Post By ~*~anebel~*~
  • 2 Post By updownrider

 
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    08-11-2013, 01:16 AM
  #1
Started
How often is too often.

I'm picky about how often Jackson is jumped. We have a lesson once a week and are jumping 2'9 - 3'0 but other than that we do flat work through the week. If my coach asks me to school a specific exercise it's done with cross rails or little verticals and if we don't have a lesson during the week he gets that time off jumping. He's nine years old, so it's not that I'm worried about immature bones, but I want to keep him sound.

NOW, I'm looking to 'lease' him out a couple days a week come September. I wont charge, they can ride for free as I'm just looking to keep him in shape while I'm in school and was debating restricting whoever rides him to flat work. Would that deter you? Do you think it would be detrimental to allow them to school him over fences (provided they're good enough riders to jump him, I'm a fussy horse owner)? How often is 'too often' in that it begins to start damaging joints?
     
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    08-11-2013, 01:28 AM
  #2
Trained
Any use is going to put wear and tear on the joints.

IMO I would discuss with the vet a joint maintenance program, I've had great success with Adequan used as the company recommends - ie cycles of 7 injections, one every 4 days. Twice or three times a year.

As far as jumping goes, it depends what he is conditioned for. I would say twice a week tough jumping and once a week caveletti work with 2 flat days and a hack day would be a do able work load for most fit and sound horses... If you build up to it.

Good luck!
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    08-11-2013, 03:47 AM
  #3
Started
Thank you, anebel. He's very fit right now, I'm just worried about the long term especially when we start jumping bigger. He's always been sound, save for some soreness in his back (but after regular work with a chiro he's been fine since), it probably helps that he wasn't really started over fences until he was 7, seriously worked at 8.
     
    08-11-2013, 09:39 AM
  #4
Trained
And as I mentioned, absolutely any riding is still placing stress on his joints.
IMO back soreness usually begins in the legs - I know mine does.

Especially as the horse is jumped more, a conversation with the vet about maintenance will prolong the horses life.

Good luck!
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Corporal likes this.
     
    08-13-2013, 01:40 PM
  #5
Foal
If you're jumping once a week and you're that concerned, I'd probably say they can jump max once a week as well.

As far as helping with his back, in your flat rides on your own add some poles and cavaletti in the mix.
     
    08-13-2013, 01:48 PM
  #6
Trained
Those front legs take the beating. I had two horses who had front legs wear out on them. One gelding I retired at age 25 (he lived until he was 35yo) and the other I retired at age 26 (he lived until he was 27yo.)
If you have Any concern don't let anyone else jump him at ALL. IMHO I would do every conditioning work I could on the flat, or on the lunge without the weight of a rider. I remember hearing about this really old TB trainer from a horse Vet--the oldest ones knew how to train--and he used to condition his TB's by swimming them in a quarry that had filled in with water. He would tie the lead to his rowboat and have them follow behind in the icy cold water. That REALLY saved their joints from working AND bearing weight.
Just some food for thought. Let us know how this goes. =D
     
    08-13-2013, 02:49 PM
  #7
Weanling
I see more hock issues in jumpers first before back or front legs, but every horse is different. It is determined by a lot things; such as age, conformation, maintenance, equipment, rider and luck. That said, unless the jumper schooling lessons are incredibly long and taxing, jumping 2x a week at 3' or less should not be too wearing on a healthy fit 9yo horse.

As for the 'lease', if there is no money exchanged and they are not paying for upkeep on your horse, then I see this more as you having someone exercising your horse. Your horse, your rules. If you do want someone to jump your horse, then you let them know that this is a flat work arrangement only.
upnover and Corporal like this.
     
    08-14-2013, 07:01 PM
  #8
Trained
I know when I was 1/2 leasing, I passed on any horse I could not jump. I would say 1 day a week, and specify a maximum height. Make sure you watch the person jump your horse before signing on the dotted line.
     
    08-15-2013, 02:22 PM
  #9
Started
Your horse will have to be conditioned before jumping bigger, meaning he will need to be jumped more then once a week. Only jumping once a week can do more harm then good. I rode my jumper 6 days a week. Three were spent working on jumping (of course dressage to warm up for a little while), one spent on the trail, and two focused only on dressage. I did this for years and we ended up at the 4'6" height before I sold him. I never had any issues with soundness. BUT every horse is different. If your trainer thinks your horse can handle jumping throughout the week, I would say go for it.
     
    08-16-2013, 04:37 AM
  #10
Started
MyBoyPuck, I'm not asking anyone to pay any fee or for any maintenance. They get to ride for free, if there was absolutely no cost to you and you had no other horse to ride, would you still pass?

Wetrain, there is plenty of conditioning (imo) that can be done on the flat and prepare for jumping bigger. Very few folks who jump big (succesfully and without damage to their horses, around here anyway) jump as much as your recommend.
     

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