Originally Posted by MIEventer
Dressage, Dressage, Dressage, Dressage. That is the only way you are going to incorporate rhtyhm, control, tempo, lightness of aids when it comes to applying fences into the equation.
You want to learn how to ride properly through your body, position and form - to get your pony off of his forehand, onto his hind end and up into your aids.
It comes from SEAT into LEGS into HANDS to SOFTEN. This is something that you'll have to discuss with your Coach. It has to be shown to you one on one in person.
If you Coach does not know how to ride nor teach how to ride via seat into legs into hands, then I highly recommend you look into taking Dressage Lessons so you can learn and become that much better of a rider, for your horse.
Jumping is Dressage with speed bumps. You wouldn't zoom around a Dressage arena would you? Then why is it acceptable in the Jumper ring :)
My instructor always says to me to concentrate on having a good canter to the jump (using the above), a good canter away from the jump, and 9 times out of 10 the jump in the middle would have been good. When my mare gets a bit strong, he gets me to use more leg, with a very quiet seat and she responds really well to it. I went from her throwing herself at absolutely everything, pulling my arms off and genuinely being rather dangerous, to easily and controllably jumping 1.10m (whatever that is in feet) and being rather comfortable to continue getting bigger.