Monday, December 14, 2020

How Do Horses Jump So High?

Photo by Bartosz Bartkowiak from Pexels

If you have ever watched a horse competition on TV, the jumping may have looked so smooth that you thought it was natural. If you are a long-time horse owner though, you know horses are not born with a gift for competition-winning jumps. For a horse to jump fences the way you see on television, horse owners need to gradually train horses to build that skill. There is special equestrian equipment to do this. If you are a horse owner who wants to train your horse to jump like you see on TV, it is best to start with easier obstacles and work your way up.

Ground Poles

If your horse has no experience jumping, it is best to start with ground poles. First, gently train your horse to walk over one pole. Then, as your horse gets used to this, add more poles. Build this exercise up to where you can put poles five feet apart from each other in a straight line. Trotting over the spaced poles will teach the horse how to coordinate its steps depending on the distance between obstacles.

Cavalettis

Once your horse has mastered trotting over the ground poles, you can use cavalettis to teach it how to jump higher obstacles. You can create a horse rail with some bends and place the cavalettis 20 meters apart from each other along the rail. Learning to trot and jump over the cavalettis will teach your horse how to have smooth rhythm with higher jumps.

Roll Tops

When your horse feels comfortable jumping higher obstacles, you can add a roll top to your horse trail. Facing a roll top will teach your horse how to jump and land elegantly. Horse jump roll tops allow horses to use their backs, hips and legs in an aerobic and athletic way. Place roll tops 25 meters apart from other obstacles to give your horse the chance to take impulse.

Jumping high is not a natural talent for horses, but it is one that can be gradually accomplished. Remember to be patient and careful. And do not forget your helmet! 

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