How to Quickly Memorize Your Show Jumping Course


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In any show jumping competition, you will need to memorize a show jumping course fairly quickly. Then, you’ll have to be able to recall that course while you’re in the ring under the pressure of the clock. If you struggle to memorize jumping courses, these tips can help.

Start Early

Have your horse groomed and ready to be tacked up before your show jumping course is released. Then, be ready – as soon as the course is released, get yourself a copy of the course and get to memorizing. By giving yourself as much memorization time as possible, you will be better able to commit the course to memory and will have more confidence in your memorization.

Compare the Diagram to the Course

Once you have a diagram of the course that you are to ride, take the diagram ringside and compare it to the actual fences in place. As you look at the diagram, study the fences for major identifying factors. For instance, mark a fence which is a brick wall as “brick wall” on your course diagram. If there are unusual standards on a particular fence, use a few short words to describe the fence on your diagram. Seeing how the course diagram applies to the actual course can help you better understand the course to be ridden.

Walk the Course

After having created your own names for some fences, walk the course to further your memorization. As you walk the course, try to memorize the appearance of the jumps. Look for defining features that you can identify the fences by, and make a list of landmarks to keep yourself oriented on-course. For example, say that you are to jump a single white fence to the right of a liverpool. That liverpool can be your landmark; knowing that you travel to the right of the liverpool will set you up for your next fence.

Find a Quiet Place for More Memorization

After walking the course, you should have a pretty good idea of what is to come. Once you’ve walked the course, go find a quiet place to continue memorizing the course using the diagram and the jump descriptions and names that you created earlier. Have a friend quiz you; recite the course to them, including the directions of the turns that you will need to take to get to each fence. Repeat the course as many times as necessary until you feel confident that you solidly know the course.

Memorizing a show jumping course can be a pressure-filled activity on the day of your show jumping competition. These tips can make that task easier and can help ensure that you successfully navigate your horse through the course.

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