Prepare for take-off

Posted 17th October 2018

Acing the take-off in showjumping is vital if you want to achieve a clear round

Straight take-off when showjumping

A good showjumping round should feel like your fave pony can fly, however meeting the fences on the wrong stride can make it feel more like a roller coaster. Luckily, there’s loads of useful exercises you can try that’ll help you and your pony achieve a super-smooth round.

Get the canter

The key to acing the take-off is getting the right canter. So, before you even begin to think about jumping a fence, work on this pace. Sit up tall and wrap your legs around your pony’s sides to encourage him into a forward, balanced canter, making sure he moves in a regular rhythm.

Top tip

Practise at home over small fences, and slowly build up to the height you want to compete at.

Prep station

The easiest way to make sure that your pony meets every fence on the right stride is to plan your approach. Think about your line – you want to aim for the centre of the fence, making sure you ride at least three straight strides before it, so you’re not jumping on an angle. This will allow your pony plenty of time to prepare himself to jump.

For more top tips on how to ace your take-offs, pick up a copy of December PONY, on sale 24 October

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