Tackle your ‘bogey’ fence with these four tips

 

Tackle your ‘bogey’ fence with these four tips

Whether we admit it or not, most of us have a bogey fence. Course designers have a broad range of fence types from which to choose (in both the show jumping and cross country phases). The most common candidates for bogey fences are probably trakheners and ditches-and-walls, but every rider is different. For one person it may be up-banks on cross country, while for another it might be triple-bars in the show jumping arena. Riders often express fear or doubt about these particular types of fences, which can negatively affect their riding and their horses.

Here are the steps to help you overcome your fears:

1) Work out why you fear this fence.
Figuring out the reason that you think of this fence as scary/un-jumpable/insane is the first step to conquering your fear of it. You may have had a fall at a trakhener. You might have a spooky horse who always takes a peek at the ditch-and-wall. You might always seem to miss at a particular type of fence in the show jumping. You can talk to your trainer about where your sense of fear derives from.

 


 

2) Don’t avoid the issue.
Confronting this fence on a regular basis will instill comfort and confidence in you and your horse. I’m not suggesting you go and jump a massive trakhener every day; however, every time you cross country school, find a trakhener to jump.

Are corners or arrowheads your bogey fences? (From Loudon Horse Trial’s intermediate course).

Are corners or arrowheads your bogey fences? (From Loudon Horse Trial’s intermediate course).

3) Keep it simple, then progress.
Your chances of conquering your bogey fence will increase if you start simple. Even if you’re going preliminary, if you have a problem with right-handed corners, jump a few that are smaller and have a less obtuse angle. You can even trot some fences to gain confidence. Jump a novice level, faux-trakhener if you’re frightened of the larger version. Once you’re comfortable with the minimized version of the fence, incrementally increase the difficulty until you can jump what’s required for your level at the event.

 


 

4) Believe you can do it.
At the show, you need to be positively-minded. If you’re skeptical about your bogey fence and ride tentatively, your horse will sense it and second-guess himself. When you’ve put in the hard work of progressively becoming more comfortable with the fence, you should have no doubts about it on course.

Do not let a certain type of fence trip you and your horse up this season. Ride with confidence and remember it is just another jump!

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