Originally Posted by Kayty
To an extent, I completely agree with the riders and judges asking you to move.
Not every horse gets exposure to a pram, and some horses are extremely reactive.
Try riding a hot, fresh and very green 3 year old warmblood that is shaking in its boots at it's first competition. We pay A LOT of money to enter an official competition, and yes, if there is someone near the arena and my horse is anxious about them, I will sure as heck as them to move. The competition arena is not the time and place for desensitising horses.
And no, it doesn't mean a rider can't control their horse or never gets it out of an arena, Dressage is an incredibly precise discipline, and a little tension and distraction from the horse can mean the different between 1st and 6th placings.
I always try to take my young or green horses out a few times in a competition environment without actually entering, to give the horse some exposure. I also ride out on trails regularly, partake in clinics, group lessons with beginner riders to expose my horses to horses going left right and centre with no respect to 'arena rules' etc.
But sometimes, your horse may be on edge already and it is one little thing that sets them off. If its a pram and you're about to enter the arena, you're going to tell people to move.
And the discrimination continues LOL.
I agree with Kayty. Number one, these are not quarter horses and number two this is not a barrel race. Apples and oranges.
I was at a competition last weekend on a very spooky, hot horse and it is not fun to be on something you have to get through a test on that you know is going to be flying sideways at least once during the ride. There are also rules about how far from the ring spectators must be. Were there not stands and designated spectator areas?
Yes, I hack and desensitize my horses but it does not change the fact that they are hot, high powered athletes and asking the young ones to focus in a new place with scary things is very difficult on the particularly spooky ones. I would suggest to you next time to go to a designated spectator area and watch from there. Although it sucks you had a bad day, the show was not put on specifically for you and your enjoyment. When you pay for tickets to an event and are in a designated area - then you have grounds to complain, JMO.
If you want I can put you on the hot kid and you can see how much you want to ride around a pram LOL this stands for everyone - I have photos of this horse 6' off the ground :P And that's after desensitizing.
I also enjoy how in the dog thread I'm the only person who has ridden lots with playing dogs in the indoor arena - at home I desensitize so much! At a competition is not the place. My horse could spook away from the pram into you and your child or another person. It is not a controlled environment and not a safe place to be doing desensitizing. Posted via Mobile Device