Jumping with your horse

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Jumping with your horse

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    01-05-2009, 10:27 PM
Jumping with your horse

So I've always had trouble (and never really been taught) how to jump "with my horse" and "let him come up to me" or "let him position you over the jump"

Every time I try to do that I usually get left behind.

Could someone try to explain this to me?
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    01-05-2009, 11:09 PM
Green Broke
As your horse jumps you want it to be able to use its body well to bascule over, so you don't want to hinder it's movement. Most people have the habit of jumping 'ahead' or throwing themselves down at their horse as it's jumping. That's bad on a lot of levels! Not only can a horse not jump properly (imagine trying to be athletic and balanced with a heavy backpack that throws itself around) but it's also very obvious when you've missed a distance. And it's not the most secure position over the fence.

That being said... when you approach a jump you approach in your 'light seat' or what some people call a "half seat" (not quite 2 point, not a full seat). You must keep your hips relaxed and over the middle of your saddle. As your horse jumps your hip angle will close as he goes over and then open as he lands. So imagine yourself in a half seat, and as he goes up your hip will 'fold' as your upper body stays relatively the same, and then go back to your light seat after landing.

Have you been jumping long? How high are you jumping? Getting left behind is somewhat common for those who are starting off. I'd say to practice going over a pole in a half seat staying in a quiet still position, raising it to a crossbar working just on keeping your body still. Be sure to grab mane so if you do get left behind you won't hit your horse in the mouth. When you have that down (and your over fences position is correct and secure) I'd start raise the jumps a bit. Gymnastics (gridwork) are also a great exercise to work on your position over fences. On the flat I'd work a lot in a 2pt position and without stirrups. My guess is that your jumping position isn't the most secure? Exercises in balance and leg strengthening will help that.

Hope that helps a little bit!
    01-05-2009, 11:21 PM
I jump around 2' at the highest.. my old trainer told me I tried to "jump for the horse" too much but she never told me what to do to fix it.

Basically what I need to do is be really elastic in the hips and not really move my upper body? Or..? Lmao sorry I'm a bit slow at this. :{

Sometimes I don't give enough and I have been yelled at many times for just "standing up in my stirrups" over the jump.. although what I did was just stay in half seat (the half seat she had taught me) over the jump and nothing would really change.. like I didn't know how to bend or give or whatnot.

Should I try jumping on a lunge with my eyes closed so I can feel it, or do some bareback jumping?
    01-06-2009, 04:15 PM
Its hard to explain by typing it, its much easier to be shown.
But when you feel the horse move over the fence, if you pay attention, you can litterally feel his legs, neck, back, everything move in a motion. And what you need to do, because I used to stand when I was younger, you need to "move closer" to the horse and feel him. He knows what he's doing;
With that said: if you mess up, or just are stiff over the fence, you can mess your horse up, and that COULD lead to a horse falling and you and him possibly getting hurt.
So if you litterally make your body move in close with him.

Move your arms up on his neck and move your hips so theyre loose. So you can bend them.

Work on ALOT of two-point positions. And have that loosen your hips and upper body.
Its hard when your hips are tight and unable to move.
    01-06-2009, 04:18 PM
This doesnt help MUCH, but it shows some pictures of different postions, faults, etc.

Jumping position - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Let me know if this helped.
    01-06-2009, 11:08 PM
That helped a ton, actually Thanks!

I was paying close attention today while riding and even when he chipped in I didn't *feel* like I was jumping ahead of him or behind him the way I used to.. Maybe it's starting to come more naturally? Or maybe I just have better balance? I'll see if my friend will take a video of me jumping so I can look at it and maybe post it for critique. :)

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