SJ today at Manor Farm, report.

kerilli

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took Katy on a ticket for practice. Hmm, lots of food for thought. she's not the most careful sjer at the best of times, but we have our first event (BE100) this coming Saturday so definitely needed an outing!
did the 95cm open first, managed to keep her calm and in a rhythm and went clear to fence 7, overshot fence 8 (numpty me forgot that it was a tight turn, although in my defence the previous 2 competitors, who i'd tried to watch to learn the course, didn't get that far) and had to do a circle, then cleared that too. so, didn't get to do phase2 but was very happy with the round, she'd tapped a couple but it was all nice and clear's clear!
then the Disco, i thought i'd got her as relaxed as before, warm-up was good, but she got rushy on the related distance to the double at 3, argued when i said "not warp speed, thanks", flattened, had a couple, fretted, tried to accelerate, and then a little shetland in the field next door, hidden by a big bank till then (hadn't appeared during anyone else's round!!), started charging around and shot up the bank into view... end of madam's concentration. oops. oh well, bit of a cricket score but she goes on any stride from any angle, bless her! managed to take a pole with us at one point (due to major miscommunication, lucky they are nice light poles!) so trotted to the next fence which she jumped beautifully. hmm.
so, at least we only have to hold it together for 1 round at BE! i've learnt that counting to keep the rhythm blows my concentration (i count TO the fence, and over-ride because of it) and all the other suggestions on here didn't work either (my brain decides it's got to get to take-off at the end of the phrase!) so i just go "Dum Dum Dum" (or maybe Dumb Dumb Dumb) to keep the rhythm in my head. if anything this makes me too relaxed...
bit - full cheek waterford with mexican grackle. sometimes she says "aargh, get off me" and shakes her head violently against me when i check her, which doesn't help approach to next fence at all, but at least it isn't ripping her mouth, and she hasn't attained warp speed...
suggestions welcome!
choc chip cookies and hot choc if you got this far.
 

Sneedy

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Well done today, she's not easy is she??! Really pleased to hear that you're finally out and about with Katy!! Good luck at the weekend!
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only_me

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well done!
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You say she jumped the fence great at a trot, how about doing the entire round out of a trot, and it might make her work a bit more? She may be finding it very easy
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How about a Dr.Bristol? I know that they are terribly unfashionable things to use, but it may give you just enough without her going argh?
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deskbound

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How about back to basics... if she shoots off and goes slightly headless, keep her in a straight line and pull up (forcefully). Sounds like she needs to learn to pay more attention to you / positioning of your bodyweight so becoming a little more rideable.... particularly now if you feel you can be a little more forceful if her mouth is not getting cut. Also, presume she goes in martingale with the head waving? Feel free to ignore if repeats of other ideas! Where is she this Sat?
 

seabiscuit

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Well done with the first round, sounds as tho it is nearly there!

Just a few ideas-Can she walk, trot and canter,over trotting/canter poles, with the reins held on the buckle end, with her neck stretched right down and nose on the floor,with the nose out, totally relaxed and calm, and staying in good ryhtym and balance? Had this lesson with this amazing ( but rude!
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) trainer the other weekend, and he told me that untill my horse can do the above exercise perfectly, then not to bother with doing any proper jumping. That exercise teaches them balance, softness and relaxation over poles.

-random suggestion, obv I cant judge cos Ive not seen you guys in action, but are you jamming/tensing your leg in anyway before /after the fence without realising? The leg, espec the lower leg and ankle, has to stay totally soft , supple, and relaxed, and most of all the ankle cant jamm forward in any way ( my biggest problem! ) Any tension in the lower leg seems to make them want to rush more.

Also are you breathing properly when you're jumping? Deep, slow breathing for the whole round? The rider holding their breath, not breathing properly can also make the horse more tense.
 

Nando

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You must be pleased to be back out again and by the sounds of it the first round was good!

She sounds very much like my boy when I first got him, one round good and then brain fuse. Granted he was young at the time and had been broken with impacted baby teeth so used to run through the bridle with head in the air and flatten everything (bouncing through doubles was a particular favourite!) Sooo, spent alot of time popping through small grids at home to make him think and slow down - also found that doing course hire and changing direction alot so he didn't lock on to fences helped i.e jumping first part of say a 4 stride related distance but turning before the second part and jumping a totally different fence that he wasn't expecting. Just having a general play around without doing a whole course.

Then just stuck to doing one round at a comp so he didn't get overexcited and we therefore ended on a happy note. Soon got the idea and is now happily popping round fox on my terms.

Bitting is a tricky one and only you know your horse - I know I go on about them but have you tried her in a myler? Maybe something like the comfort low port snaffle with fulmer cheeks. We have 4 of ours in mylers, none of them severe mouthpieces but they are all very happy in them, just find they give you a much better feeling and won't split sensitive mouths (and bonus that they all generally come on a 7 day trial!!)
 

kerilli

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thanks so much for all comments and suggestions.
yep, tried hackamores last year (English, German, nurtural bitless), not really controllable enough tbh, verging on out of control and unsafe. fine for hacking, not fine for jumping a course.
not great with trot poles, single ones are fine (or single ones laid out in a 'course'), we can mooch over those happily in trot (prob not canter though, will try!) but the moment there's a row of trot poles, she gets panicky and tries to canter/jump them. i'm pretty forgiving of this, and prepared to avoid them tbh, because the grey in my siggy had exactly the same attitude to them and was an excellent sj and xc horse... and for the last 4 years of her career we avoided trotting poles like the plague!
O_B, the "dum dum dum" thing is to keep the rhythm and keep me breathing, worked today. i'll check my lower legs, but i'm pretty sure they're staying soft, as were my arms and hands most of the time. i'm very careful not to brace against her since Baydale pointed out that i was doing that with my seat...
hmm, will try other mylers, i do like them but haven't found one that suits her perfectly yet... i have 02 and 32 mouthpiece full cheeks, and a high port combi, but nothing in between...
only_me, i'd be happy to do entire round in trot but at BE i'd end up with 30 time penalties, not great...
might well go back to trot if necessary again though. she really tries from walk, and trot.
deskbound, we're at Brigstock this Sat. yes, she's in a martingale - i hate the bloody things, but she is daft without and I might end up with her teeth in my face. i've tried the "pulling up forcefully after a fence" thing and it just makes her more panicky next time, because she's anticipating it... and rips her mouth. so now i'm trying to concentrate on getting, and keeping, the rhythm, instead.
more gridwork at home, i think. right.
 

jules89

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I do exactly what you just described re: counting in a rhythm - if I am not on one (i.e. 3,2,1) on take off, I can't take off...!
 

TarrSteps

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I think there is a difference between counting a rhythm - one, two, one, two - and counting down to the fence. I find the former usually make people relax, the latter almost always makes people tense and desperate to get to the fence. (Which can be great is the problem is being underpowered/not authoritative enough, but is the kiss of death on a tense horse.)

Sorry though, no useful suggestions. Or rather a million of them, just no way of knowing what's going to work for you.
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Glad you're getting out and about though and I'm sure you'll get is sussed.
 

kerilli

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yes, i tried "one two" and always wanted take-off to be on "two." i tried "qual-it-y can-ter" and wanted to take off on the last syllable. so "dumb dumb dumb" works for me, as long as i remember to keep using leg within the rhythm...
counting down works sometimes but not always.
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yes, getting out and about is at least the start. and one clear and one not so clear (oh, okay, 6 down, but pop-up shetland = extenuating circumstances i hope!) is better than 4 down each time... ish...
 

seabiscuit

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Re; the trotting poles, will she allow you to trot to the poles, then walk for the last stride before the pole, walk over them, halt in the middle, then trot again just as she is clearing the last pole? Using the knee block to bring her back to walk and halt. Then gradually build up to trotting over them with a stride of walk over the middle of the set of trotting poles, then eventually trot over them all in one go, and using just a half halt to rebalance the trot over the poles. Then hopefully she'll be calm about that all and then you can progress to jumping, bringing her back to the trot pole exercise every time she starts to rush or tense up again. I know you say your other horse was awful at trotting poles but still a fab jumper, but do think its worth having a good go at this exercise for Katy.
 

now_loves_mares

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Great to see your reports again, can't wait to hear how she goes at the weekend!
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Having had a stress-monkey, albeit at a later stage of his career, I feel your pain! Basically I learnt to let him run a bit faster than I'd like SJ, and to not bother repeating exercises. As soon as he knew what direction to go in, he'd take the corner sideways and just be wild. So you might be best, as someone else said, just to jump one round at each venue - as you say, you only need to do the BE course once!

Also - do you ever school around fences or poles, or always set the jumps up just to actually jump? This was another thing I found useful for my boy, so that he learnt that he could canter round a corner with a fence coming up and not immediately accelarate to warp speed!

Re breathing - how about learning a few lines of poetry or something? If it's a "set text" so to speak, you can just keep repeating it which avoids you having to think about the actual words, and if you are lucky it will have a nice rythym to it!

Good luck, she sounds such a special one, I'm sure you will crack it. Great that she (touch wood!) is keeping her mouth in one piece at the moment.
 

kt_p

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It sounds really silly but i have found repeating 'gently going forwards never in reverse' helps. I was told to say it by an eventer as I couldn't count as I didn't want to take off if I was on the wrong number! This way it doesn't matter at which point you take off you are just maintaining the rhythm. It also stopped me holding on too much as I was constantly reminded to let go!
Might not help you though and admittedly if you start to say it out loud mid round you might get some funny looks! Good to hear you and katy are out and about again though!
 

kerilli

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okay, O_B, i'll give it a go again. have tried all that but she brings her head up, stops looking at the poles, treads on or kicks one, panics, and launches upwards to clear them all... bless her, her only evasion is acceleration really. right. must. try. again.
n_l_m, yes, i school around other fences, did yesterday actually, and she was fine, accepted that she wasn't going to jump them (mind you, they were 9" high for baby horse so maybe she didn't think they were worth noticing).
okay, will review the poetry i know off by heart and try that, or a nice song maybe...! just need to remember not to sing out loud! can anyone suggest something with the right tempo please?!
 

deskbound

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Am now *still* stuck at my desk and racking brains on this one. More interesting than what I'm supposed to be doing! Will PM any bright sparks.... and keep an eye out for your scores on Sunday (am on groom duty).
 

seabiscuit

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Crikes!
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she is a case!! Has she got HighTop breeding in her by any chance?

Anyway, my favourite poem, sorry this is completly random, but it has a good beat and is easy to remember!

"Sea-Fever"

I must down to the seas again, to the lonely sea and the sky,
And all I ask is a tall ship and a star to steer her by,
And the wheel's kick and the wind's song and the white sail's shaking,
And a grey mist on the sea's face, and a grey dawn breaking.

I must down to the seas again, for the call of the running tide
Is a wild call and a clear call that may not be denied;
And all I ask is a windy day with the white clouds flying,
And the flung spray and the blown spume, and the sea-gulls crying.

I must down to the seas again, to the vagrant gypsy life,
To the gull's way and the whale's way where the wind's like a whetted knife;
And all I ask is a merry yarn from a laughing fellow-rover
And quiet sleep and a sweet dream when the long trick's over.

By John Masefield (1878-1967).
(English Poet Laureate, 1930-1967.)
 

kerilli

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Thanks, deskbound!
umm, no HighTop afaik, she's Alderbrook x Good Thyne mare. great NH breeding i've been told.
i love that poem. there are loads of references to "a tall ship and a star to steer her by" in the s.f. books i read! okay, will give it a go. ta!
 

now_loves_mares

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At the risk of turning this into English Lit 101, I like William Blake's The Tiger. But it might have slightly too short lines that would be at risk of becoming "choppy" when cantering around quoting them
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kit279

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Have you tried loose jumping Katy? She can do it with or without a bridle and if you do longish grids, making the distances a little short, then perhaps she'll learn to go a little slower and more calmly, as she'll crash through if she's getting long and flat? Plus, she won't be worried so much about the bit or what you're doing. Think you might need an indoor school though and a couple of minions - maybe a local stud that does the Futurity classes?
 

kerilli

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no kit, i haven't tried loose jumping her, really should find somewhere to take her actually, good thinking. i have a feeling it might be rather wild, at least to begin with... right, that's another thing to plan.
 

Gamebird

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Not quite as literary as the previous suggestions, but Nellie the Elephant works very well (all credit to HairyHatMan for the suggestion). Has a rather good tum-te-tum-te-tum rhythm. Other than I can suggest Ovid's Metamorphoses if it's Iambic hexameter you're after:

Dextra Lebinthos erat fecundaque melle Calymne
Cum puer audaci coepit gaudere volatur

Yes I'm showing off now, and you'll have to forgive the spelling, my CSYS Latin days are far behind me, but it won't do me any harm to demonstrate that I'm not quite the dunce I appear! I can also do all the rude bits of Catullus from memeroy, but there might be children reading.......
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Bitting advice, however, I am no good on....!
 

kit279

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Gamebird, you're taking me back now! Pliny always used to bore me rigid - perhaps I need to think about that when SJing.. If Latin's the order of the day, perhaps the 2nd declension? Has a bit of the canter rhythm about it.

*my OH is coughing something that sounds awfully like 'pretentious' in the other room*
 

kerilli

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hahaha, i can do Latin verb tables till i'm blue in the face. unfortunately. they're indelibly seared on my brain, i've been trying to forget them for 27 years!
if we're getting pretentious, maybe Goethe, the only one i know has a lovely rhythm and is wonderfully soporific!
i think Nelly The Elephant has too fast a beat for me, nice idea though.
 

Gamebird

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[ QUOTE ]
hahaha, i can do Latin verb tables till i'm blue in the face. unfortunately. they're indelibly seared on my brain, i've been trying to forget them for 27 years!
if we're getting pretentious, maybe Goethe, the only one i know has a lovely rhythm and is wonderfully soporific!
i think Nelly The Elephant has too fast a beat for me, nice idea though.

[/ QUOTE ]

It's the bit where Icarus takes off, before his fatal flight towards the sun. I won a Latin verse speaking comp with my rendition once apon a time (please don't tell anyone who knows me, they think I'm geeky enough as it is!!)

You could always sing 'Nellie' a bit slower?

A bit of one of the cleaner parts of Catullus:

Odi et amo. Quaere id faciam fortasse requiris
Nescio, sed fieri sentio et excrucior

All the rest have rather vivid references to genitalia
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. Fascinating when it's the Set Exam Text and you're 15!!!!
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. Seem to have stuck in the old brain somehow.....

Still, maybe I've found the key to seeing a stride?
 

now_loves_mares

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[ QUOTE ]
[ QUOTE ]
hahaha, i can do Latin verb tables till i'm blue in the face. unfortunately. they're indelibly seared on my brain, i've been trying to forget them for 27 years!
if we're getting pretentious, maybe Goethe, the only one i know has a lovely rhythm and is wonderfully soporific!
i think Nelly The Elephant has too fast a beat for me, nice idea though.

[/ QUOTE ]

It's the bit where Icarus takes off, before his fatal flight towards the sun. I won a Latin verse speaking comp with my rendition once apon a time (please don't tell anyone who knows me, they think I'm geeky enough as it is!!)

You could always sing 'Nellie' a bit slower?

A bit of one of the cleaner parts of Catullus:

Odi et amo. Quaere id faciam fortasse requiris
Nescio, sed fieri sentio et excrucior

All the rest have rather vivid references to genitalia
shocked.gif
. Fascinating when it's the Set Exam Text and you're 15!!!!
blush.gif
. Seem to have stuck in the old brain somehow.....

Still, maybe I've found the key to seeing a stride?

[/ QUOTE ]

Oh dear, what did I start
crazy.gif


*Sighs as I realise that I've been left behind by people wot is cleverer than me *. I would DEFINITELY have remembered doing rude stuff in Latin though - it was all just dull stories about toga parties at my school
mad.gif


No wonder I became an accountant, numbers are clearly my thing, so perhaps I should have suggested that you count prime numbers instead
tongue.gif
 
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