13 years ago
horse training- distances, leads, and rushing?
A green horse I have recently started leasing has some 'problems' i guess you could say. When I jump her, she gets real excited and rushes to the fence. How do I get her to jump relaxed? She also takes long distances up to fences, would doing grids help? We are approaching the fence [small cross rail] at a trot. She also tends to canter out of fences, but she never really gets the right lead. And on ground work, it may take several tries to get it. I try and set her head to the inside adn use my inside leg, but she leg yields. So i dunno. Does anyone have any links to websites or first hand knowledge they can share with me?
13 years ago
First of all, if you are not sure, you really should be riding with a trainer who can supervise you and help you.
From what you told me it sounds like the horse is just not experienced or comfortable jumping. If she is having trouble getting her correct lead when you're just cantering her on the flat she sounds pretty green all together; or you may be asking for the lead incorrectly.
To get her to relax when she jumps she has to be comfortable. Go back to the basics. Start with a single pole and just walk over it, let her put her nose up to it if need be. Once she is comfortable walking over it then trot over it. Just a normal posting trot over the pole and don't tense up or change your rhythm. When she is comfortable with you trotting over it then you can hold a two point over the pole. Again then she is comfortable move up to the canter. Cantering a single pole will also help her find a distance. Just make sure she is finding the distance and you are not helping her or adjusting her stride. Let her find it herself. Keep a very soft hand so she doesn't get scared or defensive.
Once she is comfortable with that then you can put a pile of 3 poles down between two standards and do the same. If she is still not comfortable over the single ground pole then do not move on till she is. When she is comfortable over the 3 pole then you can make a small cross rail with groun poles on each side. Place the pole 9 feet from the jump on each side. Since she has lots of energy over a fence she will naturally canter after. Thats okay as long as she does not run after. Placing a ground pole will help her find a distance. You want her to learn where to jump so she build confidence. Try not to hold her mouth alot or hang on her. She will become defensive and run after or start grabbing the bit and locking up. When it gets that bad its vary difficult to fix.
When she is good with that you can make it a small cross rail, 6 inches or so. Very low to start. Again, place your ground poles down on either side and trot in nice and easy. Making the least amount of movement with your entire body. The more she feels you tense she will tense and want to rush to get over and done with the fence. Get her comfortable with that.
As for more advanced things to work her on once she is comfortable jumping grid work will slow her down and teach her to sit back and jump from her back end not just throw herself over the fence. But you have to get the basics down. It may take a day to accomplish one task or even weeks. Take it slow and let her figure it out is the important key. Once she figures out the jump is not going to attack her and she can jump with out hurting herself then she should calm down.
Also, you may want a trainer come and watch you so they can see if you are subconciously telling the horse to speed up or pick up the incorrect lead.
As for getting the correct lead after the fence, ask lightly just before you jump for that lead. Dont over ask and cause the horse to swerve after. If you dont get it, then break to the trot, and ask for it then. But just stay soft on her mouth. But it sounds like you are not using your seat or outside rein at all to help collect her and set her up for the canter. You shouldnt be bending her head to the inside. You want her whole body to bend around your leg slightly with your inside leg and rein asking for that bend and holding the outside rein to keep her back on her hocks and asking with the outside leg for that lead. Work her on circles so she will also naturally balance herself for that lead. Until she knows both her leads its difficult to ask for the correct lead over the fence.
You may want to also try different bits as well. Not to mention checking to see if she needs dental work or chiropractic work or if its neurological. That may be why she wont pick up the lead.
Just remember you can't forget your basics. Especially with young or inexperianced horses. It takes time but doing it right, nice and easy, is much better on the horse mentally and physically, then rushing and forcing them to do something they are terrified of. Not to mention is usually causes problems down the road that will take forever to fix.
6 years ago
I answered your other question on jumping lessons, and I highly advise you to take at least a few lessons first, on a school horse. Its so important that you have some knowledge of jumping before you train a horse to do it, because horses can become sour to jumping very quickly if they aren't trained properly. As for jumps, if you build them yourself you want to make sure that the standards holding them up will not fall, but the pole will. Ground ties work well for poles, just make sure that there are no nails in them. Start by placing a few of those on the ground and trotting over them. Then place a single pole and cantering over that. Don't be worried about jumping these, he might hop a little big the first few times, but your goal should be to keep a steady rythem over the pole. When jumping use split boots, polos won't protect his legs. I would use a bridle and bit.
13 years ago
Okay, my mare gets excited to the jump, too, but we have been working on it. What you must do is just keep her slow, slow, slow up to the jump. Sit back on her (lean back and sit down) to slow her and make her jump off her back end. To avoid taking long distances over the fence, try putting a rail in front of the jump so that when you are coming at a trot she has to step over it before jumping, and at a canter that she must put her feet in front of the jump before taking off. This should help. When you are trying to get your leads, give her the command hard and if she gets it wrong, bring her back to the trot very quickly and try for the lead again. It will probably be easier for her to get the lead if you are turning. Good luck! ♥
13 years ago
work on a lot of trot/canter transitions, and like the first answer said, putting a pole down before the jump should help.When you are approaching the jump, make her wait. Keep your shoulders up(don't let her pull you forward), and if she tries to go faster, make a downward transition to the next gait. If she starts to canter after the jump when you haven't asked her to, make her halt immediately. Doing some gymnastics could also help with her lead changes.