Thursday, 16 April 2015

Our AMAZING Jumping Progress!

We have made another huge step in the last week which I am SO excited to write about today.  As I have mentioned in previous blogs we had not jumped for about 5 years until February. Find out about our progress here and here.  I realise that in comparison to many other bloggers out there our jumping and schooling is not very exciting - I am always reading about show jumping competitions and dressage movements that Basil and I will never be doing.  However, I like to think that we are fairly normal and our day to day achievements are more like most other riders out there.

At the beginning of February we jumped a cross pole and have slowly raised this.  We are still not jumping big jumps but I think we are up to about 2ft 3".  What we are trying to work on is our rhythm because we tend to land and accelerate!  

I have been really pleased with Basil's attitude (although I know most of it is down to the rider)as he has been positive and tried hard.  He also has not tried to buck me off on landing which he used to do.  The confidence I have gained riding and jumping other horses in my weekly lessons is really helping as I am remembering to keep my leg on!   

So this week we have started our progress to jumping a double.  In my lesson we progress our grid-work starting with poles on the ground so I have used that idea.  We have started with a 1 stride distance because the arena is not huge and at the moment (due to our speedy getaways) I don't feel I would have time to slow down safely with a 2 stride double.  I have placed a pole on the ground (where I would put a jump) and put the jump 1 horses stride away.  This is 1 non-jumping stride which for Basil (16.1hh) is about 24 ft (7.3m).  

Basil has taken to this really well, although, I will admit that the first time we went up to it he spooked at the pole and I had to go around and walk over the pole first!  The jump is on the other side of the arena to where it was before and it doesn't take much to put him off.  However,  we also tried jumping the jump first, landing and one stride to the pole which he did really well, no hesitation at all.  

He is also not rushing through, although the 1 stride limits his ability to do this.  I think if we had a 2 stride we might need ground poles to help with our rhythm.  However these always make me nervous - I don't know why!  We are progressing slowly, but as I am tackling this on my own I don't have the encouragement you usually get from another person.

Our next step will obviously be to make this pole a cross pole - watch this space!

Did you see April's vlog that went up yesterday on my You Tube channel.  
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Until next time!

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