What Horses Really See When Jumping

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What Horses Really See When Jumping

This is a discussion on What Horses Really See When Jumping within the Jumping forums, part of the English Riding category

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    06-07-2009, 04:57 PM
What Horses Really See When Jumping

I thought this was a great video to show to those jumping enthusiasts to help better understand where our horses stand when approaching a fence.

So, when a rider blames their horse for a refusal - stop and ask yourself what it was that YOU did wrong to cause the error.

As Ian Millar says "A good rider blames themselves, where a poor rider blames their horse"

Our horses rely so much on us for support, encouragement, solidity on approach to each fence regardless if it is stadium or cc.

Another study I got to watch was put on by Spruce Meadows. Huge GP Jumping Fascillity in Calgary Alberta. The reasearch given to the public was that the horse sees the fence as two fences when they are about 5 strides away.

Then when they get closer, the fence becomes one in their eyes sight. Then about 1-2 strides from the fence, it completely dissapears from their vision -

So again, it is so important for the rider to remain solid, functional, supportive to that fence.

If the horse refuses - 9 x out of 10 - it is rider error.

Just thought that was very neat information
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    06-07-2009, 05:13 PM
wow..that was really interesting!
Thanks for posting it MIE! :)
    06-07-2009, 05:14 PM
You are welcome :) Gives you a whole new perspective on how important it is to be a supportive rider for your horse.

Opened my eyes when I saw the Spruce Meadows Program on it.
    06-07-2009, 05:34 PM
soo true! :)
I always wondered how horses saw jumps.
    06-08-2009, 12:50 AM
I find it fascinating!
    06-08-2009, 01:57 AM
There was a girl in the UK who used to compete her horse showjumping who one day had a really big shock.
She and her horse had such a regular routine , nothing ever changed , the horse was always tied up in the same place , always went out to graze in the same paddock , always had the same box with the food and water in the same place etc.
One day that someone left a wheelbarrow in the place near to where the horse stands , and the horse fell over it . They called the vet to have the horse examined only to be told that the horse was BLIND.

The horse had been taking all its showjumping cues from the rider as it couldn't see the jumps at all.
    06-08-2009, 02:05 AM
Wow NS! That's so cool!

This was an interesting video MIEventer. So I'm curious. When you approach a fence, how does the horse know to jump? I've read tons, never really jumped anything significant, but this is seriously interesting for me. I need to understand this before I start jumping anything.
Sorry if I'm hijacking, I can move my question elsewhere if you like.
    06-08-2009, 02:15 AM
Whipple -- I'm assuming the horse knows to jump because it's better than running into it. O_O

Haha, jk jk. I really have no answer for you, I just wanted to try and be funny. =]

For interesting post, MIEventer. Good to know.
    06-08-2009, 02:20 AM
You know, that's what I thought. Then I saw the video, and if something disappeared from my sight, I'd stop. I'm just amazed horses will continue going and then jump it. I just want to know what supporting the horse means exactly. I feel like a douche asking, haha.
    06-08-2009, 02:31 AM
I have no idea. Because the clip did say that it blurred immensely as they got closer. I was always taught in jumping that they need a ground pole before the jump or at the base so they know how high it is, because they can't judge the distance, but if they can't see any of it... maybe it just blurs, and they can still see the massive object?

I know jumping is a lot about counting strides and determining how many will get you from Jump A to Jump B, and I think most riders squeeze for encouragement right before they go into two point. I really have no idea, I'm just throwing things out there.

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