"Teaching" how to jump - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 4 Old 08-22-2008, 02:59 PM Thread Starter
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"Teaching" how to jump

I have a 5 year old WB and I'm "teaching" him how to jump. We've done poles and single fences to about 50-60cm. He has bee free jumped to 4' with plenty of scope. I am a retired hunter/jumper rider, I now do dressage. I have no real problems getting him to the fence, over the fence and away from the fence. We have some minor form flaws that are fixable and I know what they are.
I am just a worry-wart and I don't want to overface him or I, or do any major damage to his joints by overjumping him. I'm really careful to monitor his joints/legs for swelling. So how much jumping is OK and how high should I be going?
I am also worried about putting lines up in our small arena. It's about 40-45m long and 20m wide. I don't know his stride length either, but it's long I know. I want to set up lines with "typical hunter" striding that they would use at shows to get him used to the pace. What is that? 12 feet or 4m right? And is it OK to do a 3 stride to start with? I should also give 6 ft for each takeoff and landing, correct?

Thanks guys!
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post #2 of 4 Old 08-23-2008, 12:22 PM
Green Broke
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Re: "Teaching" how to jump

There isn't necessarily a formula in how much or how fast to go, but I would rather err on the side of going too slow. Your horse will often 'tell' you when he's ready to move on. I keep the fences low until they are a little bored with it and there's no sign of anxiety (over jumping, rushing, etc). In fact, I usually keep the fences low until they're jumping lines and even courses before I start making them higher.

At a show the lines will generally be set off a 12 foot stride. So yes, 6 ft before and 6ft after the fence for take off and landing. Lots of horses won't necessarily be a 12 foot stride though. On a greener horse with a smaller stride I will often set it off 11 ft (still keep the 6th landing and take off though) just so it'll be easier for them. I will set out poles off a 12 foot stride to work on the correct forward pace though just to get them stretching out enough and then work the fences in when they're comfortable with their new pace.

I personally think the 3 stride line is the hardest! In a 2 stride there isn't as much room to get in trouble, and in a 4 stride there's enough room to get out of trouble. 3 is just in between. When I first teach a line I like plenty of room (like 5 or 6 strides) just so the horse has a chance to regroup and prepare for the next fence.

There are a LOT of training strageties out there, these are just some of my personal thoughts! Good luck!
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post #3 of 4 Old 08-25-2008, 12:07 PM Thread Starter
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Ok well I jumped him about 2 feet (65cm) the other day. A three stride trot-in line and a diagonal because that's all we have room for in the arena
He is so old pro. No rushing, refusing, over-jumping or anything. He really tries too. Over the single fence he opted for a longer spot every time and absolutely snapped his knees up and rounded over the fence with a lead change too.

Our outdoor should be ready to go in a week. I'm going to flat on it a bit and see what the footing is like before I chuck jumps up. I'm thinking a 65-70cm course will be perfect for him. I will totally need to bring out a measuring tape though haha I fail at walking out distances.
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post #4 of 4 Old 08-27-2008, 01:26 PM
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he sounds like a rly good boy!!! i love warmbloods. it seems like they are smart and fast learners from my expirence. My dutch warmblood is such a good boy, has no stop what so ever and can jump the moon. my trainer jumps him 4 foot courses and sometimes higher and he enjoys him self so much! and my 5 year old hanoverian is currently clearing 3 foot courses quietly and perfectly!
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