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Jumping Position Critique

Would you like an experienced competitor to give their opinion on your jumping position? Or would you like to give your own opinion on each month's horse and rider? Simply email me (Leah C.)with a photo or use the form at the bottom of this page and I will forward the photo to our anonymous critiquer. To give your opinion (and if you have one, please give it!)fill out the form at the bottom of this page. All reasonable opinions will be posted on this page. But please remember, the views expressed here are simply young rider's opinions - always ask your trainer or instructor before drastically altering your jumping position.

New! (26th Feb '99) Photo of Laura Albert

This horse is a cute little jumper. Heís knees are even, however just barely at the vertical. Though that may be due to the size of the fence. Heís using his head and neck real well. Heís slightly flat through the back and trailing his hind end a little bit, but over all he looks to be a good young riderís mount. He also looks to be in good condition. His coat is clean and shiny and heís in good weight.
The jump standard is blocking the view of the riderís leg a little, but from what I can see her toe is out a bit and her leg has slipped slightly back. Because of this I believe she is gripping with her knee instead of settling deep into her heel. Perhaps less of a knee-roll and some exercises with her standing up in her irons at the walk and trot will help get her leg back where it belongs without much trouble at all. She has a very nice crest release, though I would like to see her hands a tad lower. The reins are at an appropriate length and sheís up out of the saddle freeing up the ponyís back well. Her back is supple, yet fairly flat and her eyes are looking forward.
Good Work.

Your Opinions

To come!

Photo of Leah P. and C.S Mumbles

The rider looks lovely. Her leg is secure at the girth and her heels are down. Her back is flat, head up, eyes looking forward. Her hands are too high for the crest release. She should drop them a few inches so the weight her hands are supporting, are pressing into the horse's crest. She seems very secure so I would begin to drop the hands even more and work on getting an in-hand release. Her irons look a bit too short for the height of the fence. If she lengthened them a hole she could then really settle down in her heel and stretch her calf.
The horse is nice with his knees. They are level, even, and fairly tight. His back is a little flat and he's not using his head and neck quite enough. His hind legs are trailing a little bit and his ears are back. However, it looks like this horse would make a great Hunter Equitation mount.
Both horse and rider are well turned out. I could not help but notice the lack of a jacket, but the animal is braided and clean, and the rider is in her boots, breeches, and rat catcher so I would assume that jackets were optional due to the heat. The horse is in good weight and his coat is shiny and clean. This pair look like they are a good team and are quite a presence in the Eq. ring.

Your Opinions

It's not a bad picture. As an assumption, it looks like it was in a schooling ring(?)... but if it were in the show ring, a jacket would have been quite necessary. Her leg is in a nice position, though it could have been extended lower. She's on his neck a little bit, so she's kind of popped out of the saddle behind and isn't so close to the tack. Her arms are good, and from what i can see, it seems to be a good release as well. The "looping" rein that's shown is a slight flaw, but nothing I would take away for. The pony looks nice w/ its front end and is jumping w/ nice style... Otherwise... as a whole picture, its very nice. :) - S.P

This rider and horse's turnout is great, for the circumstances. This rider looks as if she has a rather artificial jumping position... her legs are ineffective in the position they're in, her stirrups need to be at least 2 holes longer.
Her hip angle is far too tight, she is jumping this fence as if it is 4 feet tall!! Over a small fence like this, you needn't bend quite so much, just make sure the horse has enough rein to have a nice bascule and relaxed jump. The rider needs to relax her elbows, which should come with loosening the hip angle and stretching forwards and upwards, not forwards and downwards. As far as the pony goes, I can't help but notice that his ears are back - this doesn't necessarily mean that anything is wrong, j ust that this is a rather unattractive feature. Once again, I must say that this pair looks very well turned out!! - Meg

Overall, I think it is a nice pair. The horse is taking the fence well, and the rider's eyes are well forward, looking for the next line. However, to make a criticism, I have to say that the rider looks a little hunched, her shoulders are very close to her horse, and she appears to have her elbows a little too close to the horse's neck. Opening her chest, and putting her shoulders back a little more would bring her into a more level position. This is only a small cosmetic detail, w hich will improve her style over jumps, but not nescessarily her technique! - Heather

Despite the darkness of the photo I can see that this pair look pretty good. One thing I do see however is that the stirrups look pretty short. She might want to lower them 1 or even 2 holes. This would allow her calf, ankle and heel to become more supple. Also her hands are rather high - place them separately and at the sides of the horses neck. One more thing if this is a show pic. I would recommend wearing a Jacket. Other than that these to look very handsome together and very capable of doing more. - Margo

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