Equestrian Show Jumping Tips
If you are just getting started with equestrian show jumping, learn about these equestrian show jumping tips. Show jumping is an equestrian discipline where you and your horse clear jumps ranging from under two feet to over six feet (depending on the level). Show jumping is similar to other equestrian disciplines, such as eventing and hunter classes. Show jumping is different in that you are not judged on your form going over the jumps, you are only judged on your ability to clear the jumps under the allotted time. Here are some equestrian show jumping tips to get you ready:
- Know how your horse is going to respond in the show jumping atmosphere. It is important you know your horse. Your horse might be an excellent show jumping horse, but he/she should also be comfortable around other horses, loud noises and new surroundings. Some horses don't enjoy being within close proximity of horses or people they don't know.
- Go to the pre-show show jumping. Many equestrian show jumping events hold a practice the day before the actual show jumping event. Attending the practice will allow you and your horse to become familiar with the course. Going to the practice will also ease your stress about what to expect.
- Wear the proper show jumping attire. Depending on the level in which you are competing, show jumping attire is strictly enforced. School show jumping is often just concerned with horse/rider safety (i.e. the rider must have boots and a helmet). Upper division show jumping requires the rider to wear an armband.
- Vary the type of jumps you practice with. In a show jumping course, you will encounter a variety of different jumps. Taking your horse over different jumps will allow him/her to become confident jumping over a variety of obstacles. Some commonly encountered equestrian show jumps include walls, triple bars, verticals and oxers. Jumping over different obstacles will also prevent your horse from getting bored and possibly misbehaving.
- Walk through the course before jumping. By walking through the course, you can memorize the course without simultaneously trying to concentrate on your horse. Walking through the jumping course will also allow you to notice anything that might bother your horse (such as brightly colored jumps). It also allows you to come up with a plan of how you will approach each jump.