Why You Should Try Horse Jumping


There is an old saying that says you have to learn to walk before you can run. That adage is one that can very much be applied to learning how to ride a horse. It is essential that you master the basic elements of riding before moving on to some of the more challenging techniques. At the top of the list for many riders is learning how to jump on horseback. It’s perfectly understandable why you would want to take that step, as there are few thing as exhilarating than jumping your horse over obstacles during your ride. Pardon the pun, but there is a pretty big leap from ordinary riding to jumping, so it really is best that you seek training from a professional instructor before giving it a try.

There are a number of reasons why choosing to learn to jump on horseback with an instructor is a good idea.

  • Jumping can be dangerous, especially if you don’t have the proper equipment and knowledge of the techniques required to complete a jump successfully.
  • An instructor will also be able to match you with a horse who is experienced in jumping and who will not become spooked when making the jump.
  • If the animal your ride has experience, any minor mistakes you might make when taking jumps might not have the disastrous effects you might see if riding an inexperienced horse.

Before you can teach your horse to jump, you need to be aware of the proper positioning for yourself and the techniques required to remain as safe as possible. You will want to start off with smaller jumps taken at slower speeds. This may not necessarily supply you with the thrill you are looking for, but it is the safest way to start. You can gradually up the speed and the size of the jump in relation to the confidence that you and your horse have begun to amass.

Things to remember while horse jumping

One of the most difficult things to do when taking a jump is to not look down. It is imperative that you keep your head up and your gaze pointed between the ears of the horse. This will help balance you both when you hit the ground running. You will also want to make sure that the horse has the reins, but that you have a tight enough grip to maintain your grip throughout the entire course of the jump. Your leg should remain firm, with all of your weight passed down to your heels. If you want to know how to jump your horse, you need to also know which muscles will need to be worked in order to be strong enough to handle the animal.

You also need to be supremely confident when you teach your horse to jump, as any sign of nerves on your part will make him skittish. Jumping on horseback is always something that should be done while you are with someone else, just in case you do take a spill and are injured. As we said at the start, it’s best to master you basic riding skills before talking to your instructor about moving up to the next level.

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