Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Canberra, Australia
I used to do showjumping, and a bit of everything, and I had this really, really good teacher who had been quite high up in competing in eventing and most other areas too. Basically, the rule she told me was 3 hours of flatwork for everyone hour of jumping. So if I wanted to do jumping one day I would have to do flatwork for three, and that wasn't counting competitions. I found that worked really well for me, because I have known people who jumped there horses often, and although it didn't effect them badly physically they can get sloppy, lazy and start resenting jumping, although it really depends on the horse.
Then again at the riding school next door the owner was an international level showjumper, although he mostly does training now, anyway pretty much everyone there was a jumper and their theory was more, if you want a horse to be able to jump you have to jump him. So they would jump usually at least every second day. He had good and fast results, but I did not like the conditions the horses were kept in (no paddocks ever and tiny icky stables), and also I saw a few of the horses there end up lame and having to be put out for a while. They were so young too.
Anyway, my advice is practice jumping, but don't always go for height, as the higher the jump the more strain. Small grids for balance, striding practice all those kind of things.