we go along with the edict that preparation is everything, then getting the warm-up right for each phase at a competition is crucial and should be treated as though it is as important as what happens inside the arena or on the course. CCI5* rider Jennie Brannigan
gives us her top tips for a good warm-up for the jumping phases.
“I find that the show jumping warm-up is the place where people get the most nervous and most tense,” she says. “It doesn’t help anyone to get wound up. Take a deep breath and keep your head.
“Make a plan that suits you and your horse and stick to it.
“I think that a lot of people start jumping way too early - four horses before your slot is plenty of time, and that’s how the professional show jumpers do it.
“Don’t allow yourself to be intimidated. Everyone is trying to do the same thing; keep your eyes up, be aware of what is going on around you but focus on yourself.
“What exactly you jump before going into the ring depends on your horse and your coach, but make sure you get to and from the fences in the warm-up straight - don’t cut corners or ride sloppily.
“Make sure you move the canter around, go forwards and back within it, make sure all your gears are there and that your horse is listening to you and is adjustable. It’s too easy to freeze a little and canter around doing nothing.
“Try to watch someone jump the track who has a similar-striding horse to yours - it isn’t going to help you to watch what someone on a much longer-striding or shorter-striding animal does.
“In the cross-country warm-up, be positive but check that your brakes work. Event riders are often very good at going forwards, but less good at throttling back. You need to be able to use the downward gears as well as moving up through them. Open your horse’s stride up to and over a fence, but also make sure you can condense the canter and add a stride before a jump.
“I like to angle a jump each way - a true angle, so for example coming in off the left rein and angling the fence to the left.
“And, unlike in the show jumping warm-up, I like to give my horse time to breathe and relax after I’ve jumped a few fences, and I’ll then maybe jump one more before we are called over to the start box.”
Are you following along with the action from home this weekend? Or maybe you're competing at an event and need information fast. Either way, we’ve got you covered! Check out the USEA’s Weekend Quick Links for links to information including the prize list, ride times, live scores, and more for all the events running this weekend.
Bromont CCI-S Horse Trials on the calendar for August 13th to 15th, 2021 are pleased to announce that starting August 9th, Canada is expected to begin allowing entry to US citizens and permanent residents who are currently residing in the United States.
Boyd Martin and Tsetserleg TSF are on the road to Tokyo! Boyd Martin has represented the U.S. in every Olympic Games, World Equestrian Games, and Pan American Games since he gained U.S. citizenship in 2010. Going into his third Olympic Games, he competed at the 2012 London Olympics with Otis Barbotiere and the 2016 Rio Olympics with Blackfoot Mystery. The Tokyo Olympics will be Martin’s third Olympic Games and Tsetserleg TSF’s first.