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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I had my jumping lesson this morning and all went well during our flat warm up. I approach my first warm up crossrail at the trot and my form was terrible going over and my horse jumped it crooked and I ended up slamming my pelvis onto the pommel and corner of the saddle and **** near came off, but managed to stay on.

OMG this is so PAINFUL! I'm sitting at home with ice now, but my whole pelvic area and the top of my lady parts are just throbbing in pain. There is no cut and it's not bruising yet but it's super swollen.

Anyone else have this happen? Besides ice and advil, what can I do to take care of this?

I've been struggling with my crossrails over the last couple of months. I have a good ride one week and a bad ride the next. I wanted to do the crossrails class in an upcoming schooling show, but the way things have been going, I don't think I'll be ready. My trainer agrees that I won't be ready if my rides keep going like this.

I'm so frustrated...I want to be good at crossrails NOW. I know it's a mistake to be impatient with this stuff, but I am really angry that I haven't mastered it yet and that I still struggle with skills I feel I should be consistent with already.

I've been riding English for about a year and a half and started going over crossrails 8-9mths ago. I had one really great lesson where I did a 5 jump course, but after that I haven't had a solid ride with more than 2 jumps in a row.

Is this normal to have this many "off days"? How long should it take for me to be proficient at crossrails? Do I just need to be more patient?
 

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It sounds like you don't have a strong enough base to keep out of the saddle enough over the jump and to stay out of the way on landing. I would work a lot in the two point, at all gaits. Work without stirrups and work over trot poles too to help with your strength and balance. After you work on this, try approaching the jump in a two point and keeping it the whole way through. Also, make sure your stirrups are not too long. That could throw you off too if you lack the correct muscles.

I hope you feel better soon!
 

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I'm so frustrated...I want to be good at crossrails NOW.

I've been riding English for about a year and a half and started going over crossrails 8-9mths ago.
A year and a half is but a blip on the radar in terms of riding. It takes years for people to become effective riders...not months.

Try to be a little less hard on yourself and a bit more realistic.

LostDragonflyWings has some awesome advice to strengthen your balance which will help you with your riding.

I hope you feel better soon. In all honesty if you keep having rides like that, your trainer should rewind back to something you are really good at, and slowly build on it as that will also improve your riding.
 

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Whizzer, are you keeping your chin up and looking well beyond the jump. There's an old saying if you look down, you are checking for a place to come off. I guess you did.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks everyone for your advice. You all nailed it right on.

LostDragonFlyWings- I'm going to talk to my trainer and ask to go back to flat lessons for awhile and really work on my two-point, transitions and balance.
I usually get into my two point several strides out so that I'm in the correct position in time, but today I didn't get into position in time and it was a disaster. I hate how some days I nail it and my form is perfect and it all seems so easy and then I have days like today when it all fall apart. I definitely need to work on my two point and keeping my legs on during the approach.

Skyseternalangel, I have to always remind myself that I haven't been riding that long and the fact that I can do crossrails at all after such a short time is pretty awesome. I'm just so used to things going easy to me when I work hard at them, and I come down hard on myself when it's not so easy or I don't learn as fast as I think I should. I only get to ride once a week and I don't have a horse of my own so there's only so much I can improve. I'm really disappointed at my ride today and the cold realization that I'm not ready to do crossrails in a show. :(

Saddlebag- Yup, I totally looked down...I remember doing it. I'm glad I didn't fall off, but I'm sure that contributed to the terrible landing. I'll work on that too. :)
 

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Skyseternalangel, I have to always remind myself that I haven't been riding that long and the fact that I can do crossrails at all after such a short time is pretty awesome. I'm just so used to things going easy to me when I work hard at them, and I come down hard on myself when it's not so easy or I don't learn as fast as I think I should. I only get to ride once a week and I don't have a horse of my own so there's only so much I can improve. I'm really disappointed at my ride today and the cold realization that I'm not ready to do crossrails in a show. :(
You sound just like me before I realized that I was in a rut (though I have been riding for half of my life, so it was a mismatch of instructors for me) and had to change my attitude towards the situation. Once I did I was able to cut myself some slack and really relax about riding instead of comparing myself to everyone around me and busting my own chops for falling short.

I'm 20 btw.. and after 10 years of riding.. 3 years of owning... I couldn't canter without intense fear. This past 6 months I've finally cracked it. So everyone has their own pace. Keep that in mind.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
had to change my attitude towards the situation. Once I did I was able to cut myself some slack and really relax about riding instead of comparing myself to everyone around me and busting my own chops for falling short.

So everyone has their own pace. Keep that in mind.
Thanks for the pep talk! I totally need to cut myself some slack and rethink my attitude. I love riding and there are days when I'm completely relaxed, but I'm so hell bent on improving my jumping that I've become consumed by it. I'm constantly comparing myself to the other riders and studying their every move and wondering why I'm not as good as they are by now. But duh...they've been riding for YEARS! And you're right....everyone has their own pace. I'm 32 and just started learning English at the end of 2011. I did Western/trail riding for years but without instruction and without any sort of consistency...just renting at the local stables to do a 1hr ride in the mountains.

I'm glad you got over your fear of cantering. :) How long did it take you to get really comfortable at jumping crossrails?
 

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I'm glad you got over your fear of cantering. :) How long did it take you to get really comfortable at jumping crossrails?
I've only ever had one jumping lesson and at the end of the lesson I felt comfortable with it. I'm more of a dressage type rider but hope to dabble in jumping with an instructor later on :)
 

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I'm 20 btw.. and after 10 years of riding.. 3 years of owning... I couldn't canter without intense fear. This past 6 months I've finally cracked it. So everyone has their own pace. Keep that in mind.
not to hijack this thread, but geeze this makes me feel so much better about myself...thats its not just me!! i am a re-rider (rode for about 3-4 years when I was younger)...I was always a walk/trot/small xrails kinda rider. Now that I'm 25 and have been riding for only the past 8 months I still can't ride the canter without thinking I'm just going to fly off. I'm getting better, but its certainly not anywhere near where it should be! Just gotta keep going, keep working on it and eventually I know that with practice, it will get better!
 

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not to hijack this thread, but geeze this makes me feel so much better about myself...thats its not just me!! i am a re-rider (rode for about 3-4 years when I was younger)...I was always a walk/trot/small xrails kinda rider. Now that I'm 25 and have been riding for only the past 8 months I still can't ride the canter without thinking I'm just going to fly off. I'm getting better, but its certainly not anywhere near where it should be! Just gotta keep going, keep working on it and eventually I know that with practice, it will get better!
:) I'm glad you feel better. Everyone just needs time... time to understand you won't die if the horse suddenly gets faster. Time to teach yourself that bracing is about as helpful as squeezing a bar of soap. Time to figure out what type of a learner you are. I bloom with an encouraging trainer, not one that picks apart everything I did wrong but instead tells me how I can improve... I'm not sure why.

:)
 

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It sounds like you don't have a strong enough base to keep out of the saddle enough over the jump and to stay out of the way on landing. I would work a lot in the two point, at all gaits. Work without stirrups and work over trot poles too to help with your strength and balance. After you work on this, try approaching the jump in a two point and keeping it the whole way through. Also, make sure your stirrups are not too long. That could throw you off too if you lack the correct muscles.
OUCH!! :shock: I hope you heal up quick!

I definitely agree with all of the above! You didn't mention how often you are riding, that may have something to do with it too. If you're only riding a few times a week you may not be doing enough to strengthen those muscles to where they need to be for jumping. Which is where all the 2 point and no stirrups work comes in. 2 pointing the trot is very difficult and great for strengthening as well. Getting your base of support really solid is what will help you in the long run, although it is super hard to get there if you can only ride a few times a week.

I know some people's idea of a ride is to go plonk around for half an hour, do some walk, trot, canter, I never see them or the horse break a sweat. If you're not pushing yourself, you and your horse aren't going to get any fitter. For my rides, I like to have a plan, I do either no stirrups or 2 point in almost every single ride, and I make myself sweat! If I'm doing a flat school I'll do the first half with stirrups and the second half without. Or if I'm going for a hack out in the field I'll make a few rounds at the trot partway through and 2 point as much as I can. If you can throw down poles and do no stirrup and 2 point as you trot and canter over them, even better, it's great practice in balance and staying with the horse even if they sometimes take a bigger or smaller stride or an awkward step over the poles. Once that becomes second nature, cross rails will become far easier, since jumping is just a slightly larger canter stride.

I've heard that Pilates and Yoga are very beneficial for equestrians, since core strength is such a huge part of what we do.

So it may be partly fitness, partly just needing more actual miles and work in the saddle. It will come though! I'm feel very lucky that I was able to get into riding as a young kid, because it's kind of become second nature to me. I've tried to take up new hobbies/sports/instruments as an adult, and HOLY HECK is it so incredibly frustrating! I think it gets worse as we get older, I find myself just overthinking everything which only frustrates me more! Haha.

But stick with it!! It will pay off, I promise!! :D
 
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