Welcome to the world of Showjumping!
Showjumping is one of three equestrian sports at the Olympics the other disicplines being eventing and dressage.
Showjumping became part of the Olympics in 1900 and shortly after the success it recieved by the spectators and athletes, the sport really started to take off in Great Britain and all over the world. The British Show Jumping Association (then BSJA, now referred to as BS) was formed in 1925 and is the national body for the sport in Great Britain.
Now lets go through a few of the different types of jumps you may see in a course out Showjumping!
- Vertical : This jump is most commonly seen with poles or planks placed one atop another. It is a single jump with no spread or width. When one is jumping this it is merely height with no added extras.
- Cross Rails : Cross Rails are two poles placed to form an 'x' formation. This is a perfect jump for warrm ups or introducing young horses into jumping as it teaches the horse to stay straight and jump over the center of the jump.
- Oxers : An Oxer is two vertical jumps spaced closely together this creates width. Oxers are great to help your horse open up through their back which is incredibly useful when training horses to jump. With oxers you can have it 'square' where the poles are in line with the back pole being one hole above so the horse can still see the back pole. Then leading on to 'ascending' oxers with the the back pole being a few more holes above.
- Triple Bar : This jump consists of three bars with three different graduating heights, this should be introduced slowly as this jump will add a lot of width and a lot for the horse to see.
- Liverpool : A Liverpool is an obstacle for sure! This jump is a water tray/ pool of water, placed underneath a verticle or oxer. The visual aspect of this and the width under the jump creates great difficulty.
- Combination : This is a combination of jumps usually a verticle or an oxer at the end of the row. The jumps are normally set with one or two strides in between each jump.
- Ground Poles and Cavaletti's : Now these aren't something you will see in a course but I thought I would add these in because they really are the must have / must do! Cavaletti's are a raised pole and Groundpoles are placed on the floor these are essential in showjumping training. These will help teach your horse to maintain a rhythm and help maintain or train the riders eye, perfect for training for those tricky jumps you may face in a course!
If you are Showjumping mad like a few of us at Saddle Up and Ride, you will know how much training, hard work and dedication goes into this sport but also how great the reward is. Saddle Up and Ride have the perfect equestrian gear to help you achieve your Showjumping dreams, just a few are the riding tights & breeches, specialised jumping horse bits and jumping tendon horse boots. Take the reins and fly away!