My instructor decided that it was too early for Rainy and I to continue jumping. So no more jumping for about a year, since Rainy will be 5 soon, and she wants us to wait until Rainy's around 6. :P I have permission to do 6 inch cavalettis, and ground poles, but it's not the same. :P I know it's best for Rainy, but any suggestions to keep my mind off it? Anything I can do to prepare her for when we do start jumping (again) or what to do to keep her from forgetting what she's learned already?
Thanks for reading! :)
Do exactly what your trainer said to do, cavalettis and ground poles. You can put a cavaletti up on a block on the right, and leave the other end on the ground, and the next cavaletti, the left end on a block and the other is a on the ground. It changes it up so your horse has to think. You can also vary the heights a little, ground pole, taller cavaletti, smaller cavaletti, ground pole, etc etc.
As far as your need to jump, do you have a friend with a horse you can ride a few times to continue working on your jumping? Just because your horse isn't ready doesn't mean you can't still improve. =]
Haha, thanks guys. :) My friend does have a jumping horse, but she likes to work him, and if I do ride him, she doesn't want me jumping him often. I'll talk to her, and in the meantime, work with the cavalettis.
YES! There are soooo many things you can do to perfect jumping without leaving the ground. I bought my horse as a 5 year old and decided not to jump him until he was 6 since I thought 5 was too young too. I'm totally in the wait until they stop growing idea.
Anyway, 101 Jumping Exercises is an okay book. I think the first 30 or 40 are exercises to do over ground poles and cavaletti. All are geared toward proper steering, striding and rider position.
Dressage lessons as it pertains to jumping. Learning how to half halt your horse with your seat so that you can both learn how to adjust his stride at the canter. If you place 2 ground poles X amount of strides apart, you should be able to pick the number of strides you want to get between the two poles without fail. If you cannot collect or extend your horse's stride, it's probably not a great idea to be jumping anyway. Dressage helps with these things and also helps build your horse's necessary muscles for jumping properly from behind rather than flat and hollow.
We spent his entire 5th year doing the above things and when fences finally came into the equation, they were just things in the middle of our flat work. The basics are very important, and a year goes by very fast.
Thanks again! Actually, Rainy's stride is very extended already, so really it's a matter of collecting. We've been working on that (some) and I was thinking about requesting a lesson about collecting and extending. Sort of. This reminded me to. Haha. But yes, lately we've been working hard on flatwork, so hopefully everything will go well. I wish I could have a video of her working so you guys could critique, but all I have is a youtube video of all of my friends jumping, of which I'm only a little part. But yeah.
First off, I really really really respect your trainer, go trainer!! I think it's wonderful that she wants to wait; it will be best for your horse in the long run :)
Do you have access to another horse that you could jump when you get the urge to? A friend's horse? A trainer's schoolmaster?
Other than that... um, sorry, but it's going to be tough. Kinda like being told you can't have chocolate - you want it so much more!!
Also, the other bad part is the barn I ride at has zero jumping horses, other than my friends. But none of the lesson horses are trained in jumping. And before someone says something, no, I can't go someplace else to train in jumping, nor can I hire a trainer. I don't have the money for that.
And to answer any unasked questions, before I recieved the no-go from my intructor, I was totally training Rainy on my own to jump, and I've never actually had a jumping lesson (that I can remember, since I've been riding since I was 4), so right now I'm kind of stuck in a limbo. Before, Rainy and I were learning together. Now, we're not learning anything (about jumping) at all. :P And since we don't have lesson horses for a jumping lesson (again, other than my friend's horse, and we ride in the same lessons, so that's kinda out of the question), it's not like I'll be getting much information on jumping anytime soon.
I absolutely admire your instructor - I know it's going to be hard, but it is going to be best for the horse. You will learn so much on the flat and then jumping is going to come so well and so much better for you and the horse.
When I was schooling 3'6" with my mare, Dancer, she and I hit a tough spot. She started refusing, we got bad distances.. it was bad news. Well, my trainer said no jumping for a year. We did dressage instead (I hated it at first, then grew to LOVE it) and when we went back to jumping, she was calm, didn't refuse, and was just a different horse. In no time, we were doing 4'. It pays off, trust me!!
Thanks so much! Strangely, Laura (my instructor) has been pushing me towards dressage too. I don't really like it, but who knows. She just wants me to because Rainy's stride is such a dressage-y stride, but I just don't like it.
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