Sunday, May 29, 2011

"Look at the trees beyond the fence!"

I was watching a jumper lesson the other day and an amateur was having some fear issues with the fences. On the approach, she would look down at the jump and worry about the fence itself, and subsequently the horse would either run-out or stop. The instructor had her look up at the trees beyond and ride the line, focusing on keeping the horse straight and keeping her leg on. This simple instruction had the effect of getting the rider to keep the horse on the aids and in front of the leg, rather than allowing the horse to suck back or deviate laterally. Rather than focusing on what she wasn't sure she could do (get over the scary fence), it made the rider think about what she could do (keep the horse straight and forward).

1 comment:

  1. This entry sounds pretty philosophical...

    Hmmm, well then, for my jumper, Forrest, when making the same jump, we easily can judge those same trees for the Forrest or the Forrest for the same trees...and so become so confused about what exactly we are looking at that we end up thinking about deforestation and global warming in our national parks, Antarctica and Canada, that we miss the fence entirely.

    This is why I'm still riding flat-work.