Boost your horse’s balance and rhythm over a fence with Piggy French's genius grid

Piggy French bounce corner

This is an excellent gymnastic exercise to help your horse to develop a powerful and rhythmical canter.  

You’re going to build a grid of three fences in a corner of your schooling area. This is a progressive excercist that starts with just poles on the ground (3 yards apart) and building up to three bounce fences.

It’s also great for testing you can stay in balance over fences. Building this grid on a curve makes it quite challenging, but it will really help to encourage your horse to bring his hindleg under his body and lighten his forehand.

 How to ride it

  1. Begin by approaching the poles in canter, aiming for the middle of each one.
  2. Once you can maintain an even canter rhythm over the poles you can raise one side of each pole.
  3. When your horse is happily popping through the three fences, you can put them up to upright fences.

 Piggy’s tips for success

“The secret to this exercise is to focus on riding a good curve, explains Piggy. 

“Keep looking up and ahead so you’re aiming for the middle of each pole. It’s important you don’t allow your horse to drift to the left or right otherwise you’ll alter the distance to the next fence making either longer or shorter for your horse.

"Think about using your outside aids to support your horse and prevent him falling out on the curve, while your inside leg stops your horse cutting in.

“Keep your seat light so you can follow your horse’s movement over each bounce, allowing your horse to stretch. Just check you don’t get in front of the movement and think about keeping your upper body tall through the bounces.”

Watch Piggy ride this exercise in the video below:

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