Hello everyone. It's been a while, but since my last post life has been busy. However in that time I had my first jumps since being a kid. This was exciting as I love watching show jumping and it was always my dream to conquer it. You feel like flying and when you reach the jumping nirvana you are in perfect sync with your pony.
Small steps but I have started! My tips for beginners or re-learners like myself:
- Just go for it! Don't think too much. Then you can enjoy the moment. I talked before about trusting the pony, he can do it and enjoys jumping too!
- Don't do anything you are uncomfortable with. Start small and build up. If you are tense you pull back on the reins, and unbalance yourself leading to refusals and bad jump rise seats.
- Trot through the course and lines first with the poles down so you can gauge the corners and make sure you are on center.
- When raising your seat remember to keep your heels as low as possible and push down through the back of your calves, so you don't lean too far forward. This makes you feel a lot more balanced and lot less like you're going to pitch over his neck as you go down.
- Don't be afraid of going cross country! Although the jumps are solid, this can give you more confidence and accuracy back in the show jumping menage
- Always have a buddy or a teacher on hand when trying something new. Wear a back protector if at all possible. We are learning after all!
I no riding instructor (yet!) but I hope you found this interesting and useful. It worked for me. More to come soon!