Jumping With A New Trainer!! For Better or for Worse?
I am back for another critique! I am jumping this time. I am on my little pony, Diamond. I'm pretty sure I'm too big for her ... Could someone tell me if I am or not? I'm looking mainly for critique on myself. If you have something that would make Diamond a more effective Jumper, please, by all means :) She is in fact a Jumper, not a Hunter. We couldn't make it in Hunters, simply because I'm going to be too big for her, if not now. We both had a need for speed, so I said hey, why not?
I have been working with a new instructor, so if you are bored enough to look at older shots of crit, you could let me know if I have improved since the switch :) I haven't been working with Diamond, but Cowboy. He's had the day off though, and I only jump him in lessons. I'll get a vid of him next Wednesday if this thread is still alive by then.
The first thing I notice is that you're dropping her a stride or two out from the fence. What I mean by that is you're closing your hip angle, dipping forwards with your shoulders, pushing your hands into her neck and saying "ok, it's all you now!" If she were to refuse, it would be 100% rider error, and you may end up on the ground.
The first jump in the video: You're bracing with your heels jammed down and your lower leg forwards, perhaps because your pony is really rushing. I think a major thing for you to work on is getting to the fence in a CALM, controlled manner. You drop her right before the fence, so it's all on her to get to the other side. Because you've dropped her and your shoulder is dropped already, you end up a fraction ahead of the motion - this will not kill you on the low fences, but will hurt you when the fences get bigger. You have lovely, balanced position over the fence... but tuck in those chicken wing elbows!!!
The second jump, pause the video at 0:24 - your shoulders are already ahead of the motion - you're anticipating the jump already. Your hands are buried in her wither - which means your reins are much too long. You really drop her a good stride to two strides out, and by the time she pats down with her front feet in front of the fence, you have your shoulders forwards and down and you're pressing your hands into her neck.
-Pause here for a sec.-
.... Your horse is trying to get its front end off the ground, and what are you doing? Driving your weight into her front end, causing her to have to put even more of an effort to get you BOTH up off the ground. See how backwards this is? You should be helping her get off her front end, not the other way around. This will cause front-end rails, or refusals.
Ok, let's keep going. Pause at 0:25. You can see an awkward stride here. You've already dropped her, leaving the decision up to her whether or not to take a long stride or chip the jump. She decides (good girl) to take it a tad long, but if she wasn't as forward or honest, I would have guessed at a chipped stride. Once again, in the air you have a lovely position. I would have loved to see that jump from a slight angle to see what your hips and shoulders were doing, as she landed on the incorrect lead.
One of my major concerns is that she's really rushy, it makes me think that she's a bit worried about getting to and over the fence on her own, and she's anticipating that you won't be there for her at the base of the jump. I would really suggest you work on the flat to get her working long and low and slow, and getting her off the forehand. Then start smaller and learn to ride her up to and over the fence; keep contact and stay back until she's taking off, don't drop the contact and jump before she does!
The only thing I see, is you're sitting down before she lands. Try to think about landing in your knees and then sitting back down.
Thank you both so much :) JDI, that is the most amazing grit ever! Thank you! I really thought about doing what you said in practice today :) I will post the video when I get my computer back (Dad is upgrading it, on my kindle fire.)
You're very welcome, glad to help!! Looking forwards to seeing the video :)
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MyBoyPuck - terribly sorry, I forgot to reply!
I had thought I was sitting down early... do you know what I could do to help it? I only do it on Diamond. I can usually stay op on Cowboy. What would make the difference?
Still waiting to get ky computer... will probably be up tomorrow :)
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