Six-time Badminton winner Lucinda Green and her daughter Lissa have a very clear approach to a horse’s cross-country education. In this exclusive video series, Lucinda and Lissa take four-year-old ‘Jay’ (Boleybawn Identity) and five-year-old ‘Snoop’ (Corraggio Z) cross-country schooling,.
They start by introducing the ditch on its own to the horse in walk or trot so that the horse pays attention to what he is doing, repeating the exercise until they sensibly cross over it without any fuss.
Don’t worry if they step into the ditch — they will learn. Lucinda prefers using ditches that are quite deep so that the horse recognises the fact they need to pass over it cleanly.
Once your horse is accustomed to the idea of the ditch, Lucinda recommends then jumping the ditch to a rail. Trot to the ditch so that he doesn’t rush. Once your horse is happy with this, link all three parts of the coffin together, remembering to not let your horse rush.
If your horse stops
If thigs don’t quite go to plan and your horse stops at a fence, Lucinda says to avoid turning your horse around to represent.
Lissa says that she would rather rein-back from the fence to let the horse re-read the question, and then give the horse a kick forwards to jump it. She says this is because: “turning away from a fence is a big no-no as your horse will learn that they get a break if they stop and then you turn them away. Whereas going backwards is difficult for them and they never lose sight of the fence.”
Lucinda warns that you should only do this if it is safe to do so.
Like this? You might also enjoy reading these:
Petplan’s Masterclass with Lucinda Green
- Find out more about Petplan’s Masterclasses with Lucinda Green
Thanks to Petplan Equine, Lucinda Green, Lissa Green for their help with producing these videos as well as Rabson Manor for use of the cross-country schooling facilities.