With summer just around the corner, I thought it would be a good time to share something fun – and perhaps give you some different ideas for what to do when the weather finally improves. (I also thought everyone could probably use a bit of cheering up right about now!) So here’s a fun little video of Sonny the Welsh Cob jumping at liberty.
As well as being a great non-ridden activity for burning those excess summer calories, this is an excercise that fosters confidence and enthusiasm for jumping, builds strength, and promotes muscle memory – all of which transfer to work under saddle as well.
Sonny was trained to jump like this using positive reinforcement.
If you would like to learn about or experiment with this approach, a good starting point is to watch this tutorial on target training which goes over some of the basics of using positive reinforcement. In it I explained how to start training your horse to target an object – a very simple behaviour to start you off and help familiarise both you and your horse with the concept.
Have fun and stay safe!