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Hunter Jumper

There is more to the sport of jumping than just getting from one side of the obstacle to the other. Yet it seems that many English riders envision themselves leaping over challenging jumps long before they're truly up to...

Hunter Bit Decision

Of course you should always ride your horse in the bit that lets him perform at his best. And you must be in control of your horse for that to happen. But while pelhams are common in equitation and...
Galloping a horse

Gallop and Hand Gallop

We spend much of our time in the saddle honing the walk, trot and canter, but there are two other speeds that are required in English disciplines: the hand gallop and the gallop. In the good old days of...

Ride After the Jump

So much preparation is spent riding toward a jump that riders often neglect to continue riding after the jump. Whether it’s contemplating what just went wrong, mentally celebrating a wondrous effort or just plain old daydreaming, a lot can...
On-the-aids goes out the window when you ask for canter. Your horse trots faster and faster until he finally plunges into canter, which he maintains only for a few unbalanced moments before he falls back into that equally not-fun-at-all...
Horse refusing a jump

Stop Jumping Refusals

What happened? You were galloping down to a jump, your horse’s ears were up, and your eyes were analyzing the approach for a correct take-off spot. In your heart, you sensed a blue ribbon. But then, your horse made...
Here are some basic philosophies to keep in mind when jumping: Build confidence from the start. Never test a young horse's courage over fences; give him a chance to learn how to be brave in...
For many riders the days of learning to post the trot are relics of the past. The hours spent listening to our instructors shouting "up down, up down" (as if that made it any easier) are over. Our time...

Longeing Safely

Don’t forget your safety sense when longeing. The following guidelines will help keep you safe. Equipment: A cotton longeline, rather than synthetic, will stop rope burns.  A broken...

Rating the Competition

Horse show season is in full swing, and it's time for me to plan the rest of the competition year. But being entrenched in our family's horse breeding business, I'm forced to gaze only wistfully this year at premiums...
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