Horse Jumping Competition

(Dawn) Hey folks, I’m Dawn Dawson with the Horsin’ Around segment of AGam in Kansas and today we’re here at Equifest and we are visiting with Ann White of the Vermillion Valley Equine Center… (Ann) Yes ma’am. (Dawn) …near Wamego, Kansas, and you also have the Basement Tack Shop in Wamego and we are gonna talk about jumpers today with you and we’re thrilled to have you Ann. Thanks for being here. (Ann) Thank you for finding me. (Dawn) Yea. Well, I have… my question is, if somebody’s wanting to get started in jumping maybe first of all maybe what is jumping? I’m not a English person so I don’t always know the right terms, but I know there’s words like hunter jumper and stuff like that, so tell us about what jumping is? (Ann) Well in the jumping world we have three categories of competition and if you’re riding a jumper then it is a timed event and you have to have the jumps all stay up, so you will get docked if you knock a pole over, and excessive time as it goes along will penalize you for that. But you can jump in any kind of form that you want. If you’re in the hunter classes then they are gonna judge you on your style, your way of going, your manners and your classic form over the jump. And the third division of jumping would be equitation and that is judged on the rider and their horsemanship abilities and their position and their ability to make the horse perform to the cues. (Dawn) OK. So, if I want to get started, I’m a barrel racer, so am I gonna show up at your house to learn how to jump with my horse, what would I need to do? (Ann) I would suggest that if you want to learn how to jump you seek out somebody like myself or a barn that has a professional and a program that you could go and take lessons. And I would probably tell you leave your horse at home the first time. Come and ride horses schooled up in jumping and knows what to do so that you’re not trying to teach your horse at the same time that you’re trying to learn how to do it. And then if things go well and you like it then you can bring your horse and we’ll teach you and the horse together. (Dawn) So, I like it. I’m pretty sure I like it and I go home, I want to practice, I want to be a better jumper, is there something I can do at home? (Ann) Well absolutely, there’s a lot of exercises that you’ll learn in lessons to help your balance and help strengthen your legs. And you know, basic horsemanship is the same whether you’re in an English saddle or a western saddle. So, a lot of the way that we communicate with the horse would be the same. So position’s going to change a little bit and your balance and we would give you exercises that you could do at home to help that for the next time that you came. (Dawn) If I wanted to jump on something…I wanted to try jumping stuff at home, what would I do? (Ann) Again I would probably recommend that until you get a skill set on the jumping that you do that with a professional. You know, certainly people will go home and set out straw bales or logs and stuff like that, but there’s a definite measurement system that we go by and things are spaced a certain amount of feet and so, it makes a difference whether you’re trotting, cantering and how high the jumps are as to what, how far apart you would put the obstacles. (Dawn) So, I’m gonna rely upon you to help me with how to practice. (Ann) That’s right. (Dawn) OK. So, I really want to learn this and I want to come back and get some more information from you, how to be a better jumper and we’re gonna have another segment on equipment and we’d like to do that that next time around, we’ll be talking with Ann and we’ll do that. So, thanks for staying tuned to the Better Horses Radio Show, I’m Dawn Dawson but also AGam in Kansas right here with the Horsin’ Around segment.

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