Eek! Need to Improve My Jump Position Drastically! Advice Needed ASAP!
Okay, I just got pictures back from the horse show. Rusty looks great. I however...George Morris would probably rip me to shreds, and then rip me to shreds again. Seriously, I should just know better.
My uploader is being too slow, so here's what's happening: I'm jumping dreadfully ahead, to the point where I'm more leaning on Rusty's neck than even having my butt NEAR the saddle, my legs is sliding way back, toe down, knee actually as fulcrum. And my back roaches.
Somebody PLEASE tell me how to correct this. I seriously can't look at the pictures without cringing. No one told me I was doing this over jumps! :/
PS - Actually, the correct two point is happening before the jump. Like, right before Rusty takes off, I'm actually in a great position. And then ugh.
Sounds like your not balanced, might be jumping for your horse?
Without photos it will be hard for people to really get an idea. Unless George Morris has a wack of time to spare for this forum, I doubt he will be critiquing you. And anyone else here shouldn't be embracing their GM side when you are asking politely for help.
And by the way we are all our own worst critics!
Work on your balance and leg strength. Do this by setting your stirrups at the top hole and riding without your hands touching the horse for balance. Do this at the walk. . When you can ride in your arena, stay walking but change direction, then progress to circles, serpentines, spirals, sharp turns, wide turns and whatever else you can think of. Transition to a halt then back to a walk. It will take you a few weeks to be able to ride at a walk like that. When you've mastered walk, do the same with trotting. When you can do it all at walk and trot up and down, add canter. When you can do all that at a canter, post differently. Stay up for 2 beats then come down for 1, or down for 2 up for 1, etc. post the canter - each stride is an up or a down.
THEN you will be well balanced and strong!
When you jump it sounds like you're leaning forward with your knee as your pivot point. You should never lean. You FOLD from the waist. Your balance will keep you from leaning on your horses neck and allow you to release properly.
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Heeeere's some awful photos!
Just embarrassing. Period. I know this is awful form, but I seriously had no idea I was this bad! How do I change my position and KNOW it's good?
PS - My horse? Please tell me he doesn't look like a total numbskull like I do!
actually, in most of the photos he is taking off unbalanced and very close to the jumps. This will make it a lot harder for you to hold your position.
the biggest thing that you are doing is standing up in your stirrups, instead of letting your horse jump you up out of the saddle. i would do lots and lots of 2pt on the flat at w/t/c.
the photo you like is actually pretty good, dont be too hard on yourself !
After seeing the pics I think what I suggested will help. You're leanin forward and are almost totally out of the saddle and on his neck. Bad things can happen if you keep jumping like that :(
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If the *design* of your position is correct in the approach, and you end up in the pictured position after the horse takes off, it means that you have locked one or more of your joints, so instead of absorbing the thrust of the horse's jump, the thrust acts to push your locked up self into the position you see in photo.
To fix this it's important to understand the difference between design of position and body mechanics. Your two point can appear correct in the approach, but if your ankle, knee and hip do not flex and your angles close as the horse pushes off and rounds, well, this is what happens.
I agree with the previous posters that pinching with the knee is a primary culprit, but I think you need to look at all the joints.
First you need to make sure your ankle, knee and hip are working correctly as shock aborbers and identify times when they tend to freeze up. Next comes lotsa lotsa work without stirrups and maybe some work bareback, followed by lotsa lotsa small grids and gymnastics ridden without reins for you to really concentrate on following the horse's motion correctly with your hip.
I have some more exercises to suggest, but I'll have to post them later.
Looking forward to your post Maura - I need some new hinge to do too!
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I know bad things can happen lol that's why I want to change all this. Plus I don't want to look like a doofus in the saddle the rest of my life. I will try all of this. I looked at my positioning on the flat doing other things, and that's pretty good. It's just this two-point stuff.
Gypsygirl, I think Rusty was jumping too close because he was tired and was being a little lazy and not getting his strides. But I'm not for sure.
Sigh...I feel like I've made no progress in the last year and Rusty is the only one that has.
Any cross-training suggestions? My entire fitness level needs to go up. I'd like to try eventing eventually, although I'm not sure Rusty is the right horse to take down that path. He's only been doing hunters for a little bit, jumping seriously for a year. Rusty IS very brave and will jump almost anything. So I think that's a start. Obviously, though, my position needs to imrprove drastically before I even consider doing this stuff.
Thank you maura. I really look forward to your posts - I need a lot of guidance in this stuff...I don't think my instructor is working out quite the way I planned (that's another thread though), and there's no other instructors in the area. North Iowa is NOT the place for hunters, jumpers, or eventers. So don't ever move here if that's what you do unless you can train by yourself!
I have access to two jump standards so far. We need to build more at my place. I have a temp. arena that will work.
Basically, what I'm saying is that I need all the help I can get.
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