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I have a Thoroughbred mare who is an ex-racer and stuff. She is really good, and I use her for jumping and western. When I go over jumps we set up, I start at a trot and we're rather fine with it. She normally listens and manages to do what I ask. Though, as soon as I ask a canter, she starts off easy, and at the pace that I want her to be at, but as soon as she comes up about 4 strides from the jump, she speeds up and over jumps it. When she's on the other side, she doesn't listen and I have to circle her to get her focus back on me. What I've been doing is after the other side, I pull her back, turn her to face the jump and make her walk over it several times and slowly build back up to a canter to make her stay slow. It tends to work for the most part, but she does it again, and I have to repeat. I'm not sure if what I'm doing is right, or if there is another thing I should be doing to slow her down.
This year I plan to do jumping shows with her, but I'm not sure if I should right now because of the fact she speeds up and stops listening as soon as she does instead of staying collected. Is there a way that I can work on getting her to slow down, and keep her listening to me after the jump?
My horse was the same exact way! I'm not sure if you want to change any of your tack to help fix this problem, but a figure 8 noseband works magic. All it does it put pressure on your horse's nose so they can't resist the bit and are forced to listen to you. Also, right before your jump, try slowing her down to a trot and make her trot the jump, then straight line halt (literary bump her into the wall on the other side, trust me she won't get hurt). Try that and see if it helps :)
Are you doing a course of jumps, or just one jump? The horse will get extremely bored if your only jumping one jump... And, is your horse green at jumping? Anyway, whether your doing a course or not, I would just stop the course of jumps, or single jump for awhile and set up a grid. With trot poles, verticals and such. This will keep her paying attention as she will have to focus on multiple jumps in a row, with some bounces where as soon as she lands, she is jumping again. If you have any questions about grids, Im here :wink:
Are you utilizing half halts? When she starts to speed up, do a half halt, and then again right before you get to the jump to help collect her and keep her mind on you. I have an OTTB who I recently started jumping with, and he also tends to get a little excited on approaches. Those half halts help keep him focused and listening to my aids.
Agree with the other advice. TB's need lots of variety of they get easily bored. Gymnastics are your friend. Horse has to spend energy on where to put her feet instead of rushing.
Half halts, as already mentioned, are necessary.
For the really thick minded TB, who just doesn't want to listen and assumes they know more than you, here's a simple exercise. Set up one small jump midway down each long side of your arena. Pick up canter and circle, circle, circle until you have the quality canter you want. Then proceed to jump coming smoothly off the circle. Don't circle too close to the jump to where you're teaching her to runout, but close enough where you can come off the circle to the jump without a big change in direction. The object of the game is to keep her guessing and looking to you for the information. Jump the jump, then start circling again until you have her back to the canter that YOU want. Then jump the other fence. Lather, rinse, repeat. Works great most of the time.
I shall try these, and I also think that the 8 band would help her, I'll just need to get my hands on one. And I wish she was green in jumping, but she's not. It was kind of scary how not she is o.O My first time doing a course and she was the only one who got her lead changes correct and did everything pretty much flawless. the only problem was her going too fast like normal, which left me behind in the saddle. I'll try to do everything you guys say and see if it helps. Recently she's been slowing down at home at the jump, since my english instructor has had me go to the jump, but then break off several strides before it and go around, which has made her calm down greatly and not expect the jump just because we're going towards it.
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