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Okay, NOW I'm confused.

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        10-16-2010, 11:19 AM
    Yes, I agree with everyone else one here. I was at a show the other day and in the warm up ring, everyone had tight martingales, even tighter draw reins and side reins to keep their horses head tucked to its chest in the perfect frame. I thought it was absolutely crazy. Of course, everyone had take that junk off for the flat classes. But still, train your horse properly!
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        10-16-2010, 06:20 PM
    I also feel like a lot of people don't know the difference between a running and a standing martingale. I think that there genuinely are some horses (usually young and green) who might need a running martingale when doing jumping training, but I feel like people forget that they are training tools and that the overall goal should be that eventually you will not have to use it at all once the horse has learned ho to properly hold its head. Also, and I know of one case, standing martingales should be used if a horse is very rude with its head and might cause harm to its rider by throwing its head around. I know a horse that broke someone's nose doing that, and after that they used a standing martingale (justifiably so). I just feel like there are a lot of training devices that are used incorrectly. Instead of moving towards the goal of self sufficiency the riders throw all these gadgets on to get what they want and seldom take them off to check the progress (martingales, side/draw reins, happy halters, flash nosebands).
        10-20-2010, 11:06 PM
    Unfortunately "the best of the best" riders, don't often feel it's worth it to spend time training the horses to perform well without a tie down...it's a quick easy fix, but a dangerous on IMO.

    And you'd think people would smarten up and realize collection doesn't come from a 'perfect headset'...collection comes first, THEN headset, and if collection and engagement have been accomplished properly the head set is a moot point anyway, because the horse will naturally travel with a 'good' headset.
        10-22-2010, 07:19 PM
    I was at WEG also and noticed that EVERYONE had draw-reins or a chambone on. A couple people even had a degouge.

    I don't believe that they incredible international riders and trainers are too lazy to do it properly. They got to the level they are for a reason! What my friend and I were thinking (and I could be totally wrong) was that they were exaggerating getting them off the front end, and getting the horses really set back so they were ready to spring over these huge jumps! I also noticed in the schooling ring that they liked to get really close to the base of the jumps, I think for the same reason, to make the horses majorly rock back.

    I don't think that a horse should be trained with a bunch of gadgets, but I think that in the proper hands they have a purpose. I am going to give all of the best riders in the world the benefit of the doubt.
        10-22-2010, 11:05 PM
    Just because you're "the best" doesn't mean you're doing it in a way that the horse is comfortable; I won't sacrifice my horse's longevity for the sake of fake perfection. And when you're using such "tie downs" that way, it is fake...and when their heads are tied that way, it is definitely NOT going to get them off their forehand...quite the contrary. JMHO.
        10-22-2010, 11:20 PM
    I'm so sorry mom2pride- I normally really agree with you when I read things on here - but I just don't see it your way...

    I think to be successful in our sport you HAVE to have the utmost respect and care for your horses, and I don't think that these rider are any different. I don't think they just tie their heads down and jump huge jumps. I believe they spend hours and hours at home, and we see one tiny snapshot of last minute preparation. They also weren't just loping around with their heads down, they were riding forward into the bridle, doing lateral movements, pirouettes, all sorts of things. Plus, I'm a believer that if a horse is truly unhappy or uncomfortable - they could not perform at that level. I mean, can you imagine trying to force an unhappy horse over a 6 foot jump! I can't see it happening! Horse and human have to be in perfect sync and loving their jobs! As for longevity - what about Rodrigo Pessoa and Baloubet du rouet? That horse was 19 and still able to perform!!

    I'm not saying that I have any kind of idea what goes into the preparation of a horse at that level. All I know is that from my experience the last 17 years riding and training horses, and the hours I have spent watching these people and wanting to be where they are, I just can't believe that they have anything except for love and respect for their animals.
        10-22-2010, 11:29 PM
    Super Moderator
    It had to be a show jumping event. Draw reins are illegal to use at any time in combined training (eventing).
        10-23-2010, 10:40 PM
    Okay, if I did this right, here's a short video. I couldn't figure out how to take stills from it. It shows what it need to. If you pause it right at the beginning, you'll see that the bay horse cannot even approach vertical with his head, no less stretch out his neck. I just don't understand the point to it.

        10-23-2010, 11:36 PM
    I couldn't watch the video but I just wanted to add this...

    I spent the day down at the Penn National Horse Show in Harrisburg on Thursday and I really paid attention to what was going on and thought about this post. This is what I saw...
    The amateur owners were practically all using standing martingales on the course (3'3"). When I say practically, I mean that only 3 out of the pack of 25 did not have a standing martingale on. And, I also have to add that the top two horses in the class were among the pack not wearing one. Although I didn't see any glaring problems from using them, I can tell you that only about 6 of the horses seemed like they needed them. Those horses were really strong and trying to pogo their heads all over the place before the fence, which is why they probably use them.

    Then, the Open Jumper class (5'5"), which had several top, professional riders came out. I noticed that all of their horses had on running martingales, which I was always taught is the safe martingale for jumping. It did not inhibit their horses, and several of the horses were very strong with their heads.

    I have to agree with the posts about how they do not believe professionals are misusing the tack or trying to make up for inabilities. That is not what I meant at all in any of my previous posts. I specifically appraised the tack that they chose for their horses to see the difference.

    My pet peeve is the people using the standing martingales that aren't even clear on why they are using them for other than to have another place to mount a fancy gold nameplate. After I got home from the show, I had a conversation with a hunter/jumper trainer that I know (mainly because I wanted to tell her that I got to sit next to Rodrigo Pessoa at the show!!!) and asked her about the sudden use of martingales in the hunter world, and surprisingly enough, because I thought I was going to hear a long spiel about their benefits, she came right out and said that none of her horses needed them but since they are fashionable right now she makes sure that her students always have them on at shows. Yep, that's right, she openly admitted that they are never used at home and they only use them on show days. So in my mind the web became even more tangled. Let's hope it's a fashion statement that is short lived, and at least I know that those horses aren't putting up with that nuisance all the time, at least with that trainer. Weird.
        10-24-2010, 04:31 AM
    Super Moderator
    I find this fairly stupid, IMHO. Martingales are a corrective device. Why advertise to a judge that your horse has a training problem, if they don't. It boggles my mind.

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