Originally Posted by Skyseternalangel View Post
Have you tried putting out a few poles on the ground before and after the jumps so she has 4 other things to worry about (where her feet are :P) rather than having a clean sweep to the jump and away?
I would not put poles behind a jump. While it may seem to be a good theory, too many times I've seen a horse land on
the ground pole and trip. Twice I've seen a horse fall on its rider. The horse cannot see beyond the jump and will have to adjust midair to avoid the poles. The horse may not be able to do that in time to avoid an accident, and if she's hell bent on bolting when she lands, she may not even try.
Do you know how to half halt? Doing dressage work, lots of transitions, half halts will help you bring her back after jumping. I would highly suggest a dressage trainer and going back to basics before jumping again. Once you are ready to jump again, stick with cross rails until she is going nicely over them. Don't rush her by jumping multiple kinds of jumps (i.e., big, small, colorful, flowers) until she has mastered one type of jump.
Another thing to look at is your position. As horses get closer to a fence, their vision tunnels. By the time they are at takeoff point, they must already have judged when they need to take off and how high the fence is because they can't see the jump. If you are throwing your upper body forward or riding in too forward of a seat, that is a cue to your horse that it is a big fence and she will need speed to get over it. Also, being an OTTB and seeing as how jockeys are in such a forward seat, being in that position can bring her back to racing days. I've retrained many an OTTB and the best thing to do with them is to learn how to sit quietly. When they are in race mode, typically interferring with them only causes them to go faster. It's natural to want to lean forward when a horse gets out of control, but to an OTTB, that means to go faster.
I rode an OTTB that was a bolter as well. Lots of circles, figure-8s, serpentines, and changes of direction before and after jumps helped him learn to slow down. Also, what I would do when he would bolt after a jump was to ride him harder. He wanted to gallop after a jump? Fine, but he was going to keep galloping. I did this everytime after a jump and he quickly learned that when he jumped nicely, he got rewarded, and when he bolted, he had to work harder than ever. Only do this if you are 150% confident, or have someone who is do this.
Be safe and good luck!