I’ve had three official “jumper” lessons now. That basically means I’m an expert. Right? Right.
Since I’m such a
baby jumper expert, I will drop some pearls of my new-found knowledge on you. Bam!
In jumpers, there are more jumps. Shocking I know! When I used to be like “Ah, I’m so ready for this hunter course to be done” around fence 8… in jumpers, I’m still going. I’m still going and I also have to jump off (hopefully) soon. Basically, I’m out of shape and I’m probably going to die this weekend.
Since I no longer have to “equitate” I’ve learned that I really have to ride. Recently Simon has shown me that he’s a little backed off of in and outs, of which there are a lot in the jumper ring. Moreso than the level of hunters we are currently doing. If I don’t sit up and ride, bad things happen… and by bad things, I mean lots of chippage.
Grabbing mane is kinda a thing for me now. I usually associate it with a personal victory because if I’m grabbing mane it means “Oh jesus we may not survive this” but since I’m typing this we’ve obviously survived.
Even when I’m doing my crazy amazing wow jumper turns, I have to jump straight. In fact, straightness is kind of the key to everything. This is the same in hunters… I guess I’m just a slow learner.
Speaking of those tight turns, Simon is really good at them. Of course, it is a lot easier when you do them on the correct lead.
My horse is not a slow learner however. These jumping courses bring out what I call “thinking ears” in him. Normally he jumps 100% ears forward, but in these his ears are all ‘what’s next?!’ I don’t think it’s pissiness or pain, because when I ride I can tell he’s having so much fun. Funny change though!
Regardless of what I’ve “learned” so far, my goals this weekend are…
- Not go off course
- Not chip out of a one or two stride (or three or four…)
- End my courses smiling
Wish us luck!