Jumping

EatSleepRideRepeat

Active Member
Joined
27 February 2014
Messages
26
Hi
I am in need of a bit of help really!

So, until two weeks ago, I hadn't jumped at all, or done any pole work for nearly a year (at a RS, developing on a bigger horse who they didn't jump). I moved up to a group lesson on a different day not very long ago. I've had three lessons in this group, and have felt I've come on leaps and bounds each time! I have a bit more confidence, and for the first time cantered without stirrups, on twenty meter circles! That was a big achievement for me, and I was pretty happy! I've never been a very confident rider and doubt myself a lot, always understating what I can do to the instructor and trying to back out of doing 'scary' things.
So two weeks ago, we jumped. I was literally shaking with nerves, which I know doesn't help my riding or the pony!
I ended up jumping the highest I think that I've ever jumped, including a jump with a tight turn just after it, and a very narrow jump with a brush as wings, ( wings which we didn't go near to but made it look all the more scary!)
It was... Experience.
I was still incredibly nervous though!
I didn't find it anywhere near as easy as it was last time I jumped, on a pony probably a hand smaller than this one.
I found it really difficult timing my fold over the jump, and getting my hands far enough forward so as not to catch his mouth as we went over it. Before, I was able to pop the jumps with ease really, but it's so much harder now.
Also, the people I ride with go most days, whereas I only go once a week, and I find I don't have the stamina that they do. I am naturally very red after doing any exercise, which is permanently embarrassing, but I have been going running a couple of times a week for a while now, and I don't think this is helping in any way unfortunately! I am quite fit generally, averaging about 6hours a week of exercise including my hour weekly ride.
Any ideas of how to keep going as long as the others? Also, how to time my fold into the jump and release the reins in good time? And confidence?

Sorry it's all a bit all-in-one, I am a bit all over the place today! Thanks everyone that made it this far, complimentary Gu (Umlaut on the 'U'!!!) zillionaire's shortcake naughty pudding stuff for everyone! :)
 

LessThanPerfect

Well-Known Member
Joined
22 March 2014
Messages
347
I have an urban rebounder trampoline type thing which is great as I can do as much or as little as I want each day and it puts no stress on joints, they are quite expensive though and you can get cheaper versions if you don't need the stabilising bar to balance. Means you can build up your stamina without anyone else seeing you all red any sweaty too! :)
 

rowan666

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Joined
12 February 2012
Messages
2,133
Location
cheshire
You wouldnt want advice on jumping from me, ive only been riding my entire life and im still cant jump! Haha but what i would say is this... Stop comparing yourself to others in the class! It wont do your confidence anygood atall. Just get on with your lesson and enjoy riding! If you are coping with the hour lesson red faced or not then jst stop over analyising or you will fast start thinking of riding as a chore.
Having said that, they key to good balance (which is the key factor when riding) is core strength so maybe get yourself one of those exercise balls and do some of the suggested 5/10min work outs with them. Diet plays a huge roll when it comes to stamina too if your really that concerned *off to take my own advice! :D*
 

mairiwick

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Joined
2 May 2014
Messages
211
Location
Cheshire
How many are in your lesson? How many goes at the jump do you get? I found that after a break from riding (and my own horse for 10 years, who I would fly over jumps with), I was really nervous when I went to get back into it at a local riding school. I was so used to his jump, I was scared of the unexpected. To be fair, the horses all jumped nicely, some needed more control than others, but I just had to keep coming, again and again, until firstly I started to breathe and relax and secondly actually think about it! My instructor was really good, she noticed my tension and got me to come over again and again until it felt right.
I also suffer from tomato face! Once I'm red it doesn't go away either! Arena mirrors didn't help me feel any better haha

It will all come together, just keep with it, repetition is key (and breathe!). I also found counting down strides to the fence helped me keep a better rhythm and I ultimately rode better.

Could you manage a few private lessons just to give you chance to work on it with your instructors full attention? I'm sure you are doing well in your group but if it helps your confidence with it, might be something to think about?
 

EatSleepRideRepeat

Active Member
Joined
27 February 2014
Messages
26
In my private lessons, we didn't jump at all. I was having private lessons for the year before, and I didn't jump a single time! I'm not completely sure, it was definitely partly down to the pony who didn't jump. It really varies how many other riders, one week there were four of us, the next we had seven! I got to warm up over a tiny one about three times, then the scary one twice, and one on a difficult turn probably once, maybe twice, and then the course with them all together only once.
My instructor is good at pushing us, she's quite young and keeps us working hard! I have really progressed, but again it's hard to focus on confidence issues when there is a big group of us.
I will try to count down the strides next time!
Thanks very much mairiwick!

And rowan, thanks for your advice! I do tend to overanalyse pretty much everything I do, so I forget that I'm doing it and go a bit far!
Thanks again :)
 

Fides

Well-Known Member
Joined
1 August 2013
Messages
2,946
Instead of counting down, try counting up. That way if you are out you can count out by how much. 3-2-1-1-1 isn't much help to you but if you think you are 3 strides but actually count 5 you know just how much distance the next time. Does that make any sense?
 

GinnyBells

Well-Known Member
Joined
11 May 2014
Messages
65
The only advice I could give you about the jumping and confidence is practice makes perfect. If you only started jumping two weeks ago and get one lesson a week then I'm guessing you've only jumped that horse twice? You cant expect to be perfect every time especially since you haven't jumped for a year, it always takes me a few sessions to get back to how I was when I start jumping after having a few months off in the winter (which happens every year because of the weather). Don't over think it and don't stress, the other riders in the group are probably too busy thinking about how they were in the lesson to even notice that you're out of breath:)
 

Leaveittothediva

Well-Known Member
Joined
7 October 2010
Messages
98
Hey there, Your doing great. you only go once a week so as I know it will be slow progress. So don't be so hard on yourself and just enjoy it. There are lots of people who ride and think they know it all. But as everyone knows about riding. Horses are very crafty, when they think you are getting too big for your boots and maybe not being so fair to them. Everything suddenly seems to go "tits up". I would be completley bored long ago if I didn't mess things up. Its the learning process that is of benefit snd caring about the horses themselves. Enjoy the journey :)
 
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