Originally Posted by MIEventer
Yes, I do allot of competing. Not only Hunter/Jumper schooling shows to keep fit over the winter, but I also do many HT's over the summer - because Eventing is my passion.
But just because one competes, does not make them a good rider :) *wink*
I would far wrather see a functional rider, 100x over a pretty rider.
Pretty is as pretty does.
And again we agree...and I agree with your earlier reply to me. So much is lacking in education - and just because a rider can get on a polished horse and jump a 4' or 5' course does NOT make them a trainer, or a good rider for that matter. There was a trainer around here that was riding and showing all over the world - this person came from $$ - and looked to be a beautiful rider. Wound up getting a job at a barn not too far from me, and at the shows, the students of this person were all awful. If they were on "made" horses, they placed, but often in harsh bits and riding off the hands. (They showed jumpers.) Even worse, a client that had left my barn to go to this trainer who was closer to their home had severe issues with their horse....when with me the student/horse were doing 2'6" courses with ease, and showing combined tests up to 2'3" courses and intro and training level dressage. With the new trainer, the student dq'd 2 of 3 jumper courses at 2'. TWO FOOT! And then the "trainer" got on and had to use a crop and spurs to get the horse - a previously willing jumper - over a 2' course at a show. Even worse - their "follow up" training at home was free jumping the horse 4', and bragging with pictures all over the internet. It was heartbreaking to me to see for the horse, who has a heart of gold, and frustrating that there are unfortunately so many trainers out there like this.
Have I let students jump high to build confidence? Sure. What I love to do is let them do a gymnastic where the last element his higher. For example I let a 10 year old pony-clubber with her own push-button pony and she has been riding for about 6 years, do a gymnastic where one day for fun I let the last fence go up to 3' (the rest was 2' - 2'6"). All easy distances where she simply needed to stay in two point. Her confidence soared, and yet I reinforced the rules that 1. She was NEVER to do that alone and 2. She was NEVER to do that outside of a lesson (and her mom is a horse person so I know it won't happen). Would I let her do a 3' course? Or even an individual 3' fence? No way! When she shows 2' she still gets stage fright and all the good at home training goes to toes down and knee gripping! She's not ready for that. So there's also a place for allowing a student to jump higher as a reward or to learn the feel of it, in a controlled environment like a gymnastic exercise with easy distances on a well trained horse. VERY different than saying I SHOW 3'.
Again - it's not height that matters....it's riding ability.