Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Changing it Up

In my jumping lesson last Friday, the last one I'll EVER have in my poor gorgeous saddle, we had some torture fun playing with Cadence's adjustability in the canter.  First we started by popping over a few warm up fences, and jumping them out of a normal show jumping canter and a more collected canter.  Then my coach set up a 4 stride line with two small (2'6) oxers set at 50 or so feet, I believe.  Our first exercise involved riding a circle over the first jump, then coming back around and jumping through the line.  Seems easy, but once you've jumped the one fence on a circle a few times its a LOT of work to keep your horse straight through the line!  Keeps the ponies on their toes though.  Next we repeated the first exercise, but this time after jumping through the line, we cantered back across the diagonal to jump the first oxer on an angle.  Making any sense? Okay, I'll attempt to draw a bad diagram to help.  Anywho, neither Cadence nor I had ever jumped an angled fence intentionally, so that was interesting.  She was a pro, hopping over it like it was nothing.   We repeated the same exercise in the other direction, having great success there too.  The trouble came when we had to work on changing the length of her stride.  Fitting 5 strides into a 4 stride line is not fun.  Not at all.  We first had a lot of trouble getting in deep to the first fence.  I'd collect her canter, and she'd just take off early... nowhere near the fence.  Damn scopey horses -_- Once we kind of got that under control, we repeated the same circle-line exercise (angled fence and all) except we (attempted) to fit 5 strides into the line before returning to our showjumping canter and cantering over the angled fence... in a controlled manner.  Shortening up was hard for her.  She broke on me a few times, went WAY long on me a few times, and even took down a rail or two.  However, in the end we got it, & quit the jumping on a fantastic note.  To finish off the lesson, we introduced flying lead changes, & she picked them up beautifully only missing one change over the pole the entire time.  Go mare!
can you tell I'm not a computer person?
I did try to use different line patterns for the different elements of the exercise... oh, and the diagonal line across the fence indicates that it can be jumped at an angle too?  They both can, as they're just plain square oxers... so I don't know why that was necessary.  Ah well.

1 comment:

  1. Sounds like a cool exercise! My guy hates shortening up, too, but he won't leave long unless he's in a rhythm on xc, lol.

    You guys are making excellent progress. Video?

    PS Way jealous of your changes.