If you’re thinking of building your own horse jumping circuit, you might be wondering what sorts of jumps you ought to be adding to your track. There are a lot of different sorts of jumps to think about and we’ll dive right in to see what you may want to include for you and your horse’s jumping pleasure.
Fence or Rail Jumps
The most common type of jump you’ll find is a fence or rail jump that generally has some fashion of bars or rails laid between two posts and held up by horse jump cups. These jumps can be put together in a variety of configurations, and posts with adjustable jump cups can help you create new challenges for you and your horse.
Rail jumps can be found in configurations of one, two, or even three fences. One of the most common designs is a cross rail jump. This jump consists of one fence with the bars laid in an X-shape. This is generally the first jump a rider and horse will train on, as it has the lowest height to clear. Once you’ve mastered a cross rail, a single fence with adjustable bars will be your friend as you learn to clear new heights.
Bank jumps feature two fences and go from one level to another, either increasing or decreasing height. These provide an extra challenge but are best approached from the uphill side.
Rail jumps can also feature as many as three fences. These would be for riders who are very confident in their and their horse’s ability to clear challenging jumps. For instance, triple bar jumps have three fences, usually in ascending height order.
Natural Hazard Jumps
A few jumps that don’t feature rails are ones that are based more on natural hazards. There are jumps featuring water, such as the aptly named “open water” jump, which features a wide pool of water, and the “liverpool,” which combines water and a rail jump, often in an “oxer” style, which is two fences placed next to one another. Wall jumps feature exactly what you might imagine, some sort decorative wall that is made to look like authentic brick, wood, or stone, but is really a lightweight material that will not harm the horse. Similarly, a brush fence is a wall jump with a covering of brush on top, to resemble bushes, thickets, or hedges one might find on a hunt.
There are a plethora of jump styles to choose from when building your own jump course and these idea will get you started towards creating a course that will train you and your horse well.