Skill one: Adapt his stride
A jump-off is fast and you can’t guarantee you’ll get the stride you planned when you walked the course, so it’s essential to adapt your horse’s stride between fences. “You want your horse to react quickly to your aids in a jump-off,” says Yazmin. “Sometimes it doesn’t go to plan, but being able to shorten or lengthen your horse’s stride helps you stay on track.”
How to ride it
a) Go large around the school in canter and settle into an even rhythm. b) Down the long sides of the school, lengthen your horse’s stride. c) Keep your leg on and your body upright. d) Along the short sides of the school, collect your horse’s canter. e) Raise your hands slightly and push into your heels, lightening your seat and keeping your body upright. f) Repeat the exercise around your school, lengthening on the long sides and collecting on the short sides. g) Change the rein and repeat in the other direction. THE NEXT LEVEL: Put two poles down the middle of your school or paddock, with seven of your horse’s strides between them. Initially, canter over the first pole and canter seven strides to the second. The next time around, lengthen your horse’s canter and aim for six strides between the poles, instead of seven. After that, collect his canter and aim for eight. With each repetition, alter the number of strides between the fences. Once you’re confident, make the poles into small jumps and repeat.
Lighten your seat to help your horse collect his canter
Use your leg to encourage your horse to lengthen his stride