Perfect prep for an XC event

Posted 5th March 2020

Get your fave pony ready for a cross-country competition

riding cross-country

Going cross-country with your fave pony’s awesome! It’s a real test of your partnership and it’s super-fun to canter through the countryside and fly over natural fences. However, to make sure both you and your pony enjoy the experience, it’s really important to make sure you’re both properly prepared. Here’s what you need to know…

Top tip

To make sure your pony’s ready for action, follow the fitness plan in the Spring issue of PONY mag!

Getting active

Jumping round a course of 12-16 cross-country fences is physically demanding, and your pony needs to be very fit to be able to do this. Spend time improving his fitness gradually, starting at least five or six weeks ahead of your competition. Begin by hacking out in walk, then introduce some short bursts of trot, before building up to canter work.

Your own fitness is important, too, so you can stay light and balanced in the saddle and support your pony around the course. So, think about getting more active in the run-up to your XC comp, too!

Back to school

Start prepping for your cross-country comp in the arena! It’s the perfect place to introduce tricky fences such as corners and skinnies, and build your own and your pony’s confidence. Creating these fences out of poles and jump wings or blocks means you can start with them super-low and easy. Plus, they’ll knock down, so they’ll be less daunting for you both.

Make sure you’re ready to tackle your next cross-country event with our super-handy guide in April PONY, on sale 11 March.

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