Went to my first horse show! How did I do? Feel free to critique anything! - The Horse Forum
  • 1 Post By mac007
  • 2 Post By Weezilla
  • 1 Post By MyBoyPuck
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post #1 of 4 Old 07-05-2013, 10:34 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2011
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Went to my first horse show! How did I do? Feel free to critique anything!

We did pre-novice and novice hunters. Did pretty well as most of my classes were out of 11 people and we placed! I've only been riding now for about 4 years so I know I have a lot to work on! Here's the album:

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post #2 of 4 Old 07-05-2013, 10:44 AM
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: USA
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May all your Trails be happy and safe ones

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post #3 of 4 Old 07-05-2013, 01:22 PM
Join Date: Aug 2012
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Congrats on a successful first show

First - Your turnout is impeccable, both horse and rider. Beautiful shiny horse and great braids. Your well-fitted bridle with buckles and keepers lined up and saddle and pad all fit well and your boots are nice and shiny. These details show the great respect you have for your horse and your sport

Second - how great to actually ride hunter classes on a real outside course on glass and not in a sand ring??!! What a nice venue! You're now officially spoiled forever

Your flat pictures remind me of hunters in the 70s and 80s in the best way. There's nothing so classic as a beautiful plain dark bay TB on an outside hunter course. Your form is nice here on the flat, but shows some tension which shows up in the o/f pics.

You are jumping ahead of your horse and aren't closing your hip angle over the fences. Notice how your "lady parts" are in front of the pommel in every pic. It should be hovering above the seat, and your elbows went out when you "overjumped" the fences.

Your horse seems very honest - many horses would quit when the rider consistently drops her horse and jumps ahead. Be aware that as the fences get bigger and correct striding becomes more critical, you can lose your horse's confidence quickly if he isn't presented with a doable stride in front of the fence. Do it enough and you will create a stopper The fences here are too small for your horse to take seriously and I'm guessing that your photographer wasn't a professional show photographer, since all jumping pics show your horse with hind end still on the ground.

If I were your trainer, I'd have you practice endless hours jumping position, with attention to the transition from galloping position into jumping position, both at large and over trot poles, raised cavaletti, and a simple X. Pay attention to scooting your butt back, keeping your back flat, and elbows in. Remember that when your elbows go East and West, they cannot go forward As the fences get bigger, your horse's mouth will suffer for this. Also, lines of gymnastics are so good for improving your horse's bascule and your jumping position. I would also have you call out striding to fences of varying heights and widths from 2 strides away - "2, 1, GO!" and increase to 3, 4, 5, 6... Its a great exercise for developing your eye for distance.

I really enjoyed seeing your photos. You should be very proud of yourself and your lovely horse!
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post #4 of 4 Old 07-06-2013, 04:53 PM
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Connecticut
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Everything Weezilla said. I don't know how hunter riders are trained to jump, so I don't know if suggesting approaching the fence in full seat or light seat rather than half seat would be worth while. From these pics, I'm thinking you guys ride the whole course in half seat, so I'll comment based on that. If you are approaching in half seat, I know it is tempting to think there is more for you to do when the horse jumps, but that is not the case. There in absolutely nothing that should change with your position. Horse comes up to you and back down while jumping. At most your absorb the motion with your hips and knees as the horse makes his jumping effort.

A great exercise to perfect this is a series of 3 low bounces set 9' apart. Approach in half seat canter, hands forward, and picture the top of your head is on a zip line and in a fixed position. Absorb the motion on the bounces in your hips and knees. Holding mane helps you hold the position so you can focus on keeping your upper body still. It's a very fun exercise and gets quick results.

Very nice turnout. You guys are going to be hard to beat once you get your jumping mechanics fixed.
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You just have to see your distance...you don't have to like it.
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