Horse Training Tips: Teaching Your Horse to Jump

horse trainingLooking to take the next leap in your horse training?

If that’s the case, you might want to consider teaching your horse to jump. It’s the next step for many horse trainers who have already mastered simple tricks.

But where do you start? Teaching your horse to jump isn’t much different from other training techniques. You need to be focused, patient, and disciplined.

It can also be an extremely rewarding trick that can put you on the fast track to becoming a riding champion. Read on for some top tips for when you’re teaching your horse to jump.


Still a beginner? You might want to think twice about teaching your horse to jump.

Horses can be wildly unpredictable when first starting out. As a result, inexperienced riders should be wary of getting in over their heads.

You want to have mastered novice horse training techniques before moving on to jumping. You should also gear up with a certified riding helmet and have an instructor near you at all times.

Likewise, your horse should be ready to handle jumps. Experts caution that horses need to have mature joints and closed growth plates before jumping. Each horse is different, but most horses are ready for training at age three.

Riders should also have a secure seat by the time they try jumping. You should develop this skill after a few months of training.

Pole Riding

You’ve conquered the basics. Now what?

The first step to horse jumping is to practice riding over poles. You will begin by learning to walk over a single pole.

Once you feel comfortable, you should add a line of colored poles. Set up three to five poles several feet apart from each other.

The horse should be able to trot and canter over the poles while moving straight forward. If that proves difficult, you can use tramlines to guide them through.

Work with poles for a few weeks before moving to the next step. It’s important not to approach this like a jump. Simply keep contact with the horse and use your legs to guide them.

Your next step will be to raise the poles a few inches off the ground. Your horse should be able to trot over these poles without hesitation before moving to jumping.

The Big Jump

You’ve conquered the basics and pole riding. Now comes the big jump.

The next step is to add a cross rail that will require your horse to actually jump. You should look forward and keep your seat secure during the jump.

While in the air, you should practice a release by moving your hands forward up the neck. This move will keep the horse balanced and free to stretch its neck. Put your hands back in a normal position when you land.

You can add a line of cross rails after a few successful jumps. As you get more skilled, you can gradually increase the height of the jump.

Horse Training Tips Wrap Up

The key to horse jumping is repetition. Stay patient and don’t rush through any stage of the training process.

Some horses take longer than others to master tricks. You want to make sure your horse is comfortable and can handle each jump. Jumping can also lead to signs of stress. Make sure to give your horse a longer recovery time if needed.

Have fun and take it slow. You’ll be jumping into your next trick before you know it. Are you ready to teach your horse to jump? We can help. Contact us today to take the next step in your training.

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