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Mare Running Out!
My mare whenever we go to jump a solid jump she runs out to the left and sometimes the right. I have tried using lots of leg coming in towards the jump and just driving with my seat. She will go to jump it then deck out at the last minute. I try to give lots of leg primarily on the left but, if I put more leg on on side she just runs out the other side. If I use both legs she throws a big buck. She also rushes the fence and I don't know how to stop this either. I have tried circling her before the jump until she calms down and listens, but that is after almost 10 circles! Could she possibly go in to fast towards the jump and realize that she is going to fast or is she just being deffiant or could there be more to this behaviour. I don't let her away with the running out or the rushing she just insits on it until she is completly tired out of me disiplenning her. Maybe I need to disiplenne her in a different way becuase right now all I do is turn her right back towards the jump and try over and over. I am open to all suggestions I am not one of those people who have issues with disiplenning their horse...within reason! Thanks for all the help in any way!
do you work with a trainer?
This may be one of those instances where someone else needs to get on and just remind your mare what her job is. My trainer rides my horse every thursday. This keeps him tuned up and keeps him pretty clear on what's expected of him.
Have you tried putting wings up? Using them permanently can become a crutch, but there is nothing wrong with putting them up to remind her not to run out. Leave them up for a couple of sessions so you can remind her that you are asking her to go over, not around, then take them down again and see how she is?
^^^ Great Idea!
rushing and then running out seems like anxiety to me. i would work on trotting her into jumps, using 3-4 trot poles in front of the jump. once she is very reliable at that, i would have a jump with a single placement pole in front of it and trot, then canter, that.
Are you focusing too much on the fence? Take the fences down to wee itty bitty things and just ride her at a trot like you are riding over pole... basically ride to the base of the fence. Keep you leg on and don't make a big deal of it or get into jumping position. Ducking out can be from anxiety or a less than willing horse who is sensing a slight shift in your seat to one side or another and is taking advantage of it. If you have to... go back to poles.
If you need to circle 10 times just to calm her down before approaching a fence, it time to back the truck up. Change jumps to poles on the ground and trot them. Take it in steps. Trot poles until she's calm and relaxed, then canter them with the same goal. Once she's calm at canter, start to build things back up slowly, first tiny cross rails, then small verticals, etc.
She sounds like she's overfaced or just doesn't understand what you want. Just spell it out for her and reward every try.
When Major decides trying to go around a fence, my instructor makes me circle him around and force him to walk over it.. although, he must've gotten the message because he no longer does it. :)
Running out is a RIDER issue, not a horse issue.
Your horse shouldn't be ABLE to run out. Yep, mine runs out too sometimes, it is ALWAYS my fault when he does! Keep both legs on, it doesn't MATTER if your horse bucks - and keep a contact so that if the leg isn't enough you can correct instantly and not let the horse build up any momentum. You should release over the fence itself, no earlier, and stay forward in your jumping position for one stride after so you can sit back again without smacking your horse in the mouth.
The rushing and the inclination to refuse are confidence issues in either you or the horse. Are YOU scared? If you are, it will rub off on your horse. Either way you need to go back to basics. Trot poles if you have to! Don't be afraid to, I can jump well over 3'4" and yet I still take my experienced gelding back to 18" fences and smaller at the start of every session and work my way up from there.
I have a mare here that has jumped 3' but has MAJOR confidence issues under saddle, and the most I'm doing with HER is poles!
So just go back to the beginning, take it easy, and don't move up in height again until everything (and I mean EVERYTHING) is completely perfect. A small problem over a 1' fence will become a HUGE problem over a 3' fence, so make sure there are NO problems before you move up, even tiny ones.
Don't look down, look at the fence that comes after the jump, then ask her. :)
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