Why are you looking down? - The Horse Forum

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post #1 of 27 Old 07-07-2010, 11:37 PM Thread Starter
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Why are you looking down?

I have asked several people this, and they didn't seem to know the answer, so I thought that I'd ask here. Why is it that people stress looking up when going over a jump, but you see famous jumpers looking down, almost at the jump, while in mid-air? I know that you are supposed to keep your head up to look to where you are going so you can aid your horse, but why do some people look down?
Here's a picture so you get what I mean:
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post #2 of 27 Old 07-07-2010, 11:48 PM
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That is odd :/ I don't jump, but that doesn't make much since.
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post #3 of 27 Old 07-07-2010, 11:48 PM
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I will leave your questions to be answered by the more knowledgeable poeple on here, but let me ask you this... Just because they are looking down, it makes it okay for you to look down? Well, think about it this way... Their legs are all over the place, their heels are up in the sky and a lot of the time they are pinching with their knees... So it makes it okay for you to do all of those things? PS: When I say you, I just mean anyone, not YOU. ;)

Anyways, I am not bashing the upper level riders, as jumping that height is REALLY hard (I mean, I wouldn't know, but I can assume it is hard). I'm just saying, just because the pros do it, doesn't mean you should.

That is just my $0.02 :)

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post #4 of 27 Old 07-07-2010, 11:56 PM
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Two simple answers; they aren't riding correctly, or perhaps they're checking to see if the rail fell.

"Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds."
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post #5 of 27 Old 07-08-2010, 12:02 AM Thread Starter
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I always thought that it might be to see if the rail fell, but I really have no idea! Lol I always wondered because I subscribe to Practical Horseman and ALWAYS read George Morris's jumping clinic. He stresses the importance to be looking up, yet on the cover of the magazine, sometimes riders are looking down. It makes sense that their positions could be incorrect. Thinking about incorrect positions makes me somewhat sad, though. These riders are TOP LEVEL, you would think that they would put so much time into their positions so that they would be AMAZING! Perhaps they were caught at a bad jump? Who knows! Lol
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post #6 of 27 Old 07-08-2010, 12:11 AM
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Tehehe I look down when I ride, AND I RIDE DRESSAGE. Well, I used to look down. Its kinda just a bad habit some people get for some reason. But it can really knock the horse off balance, trust me, I've felt it miyself, lol.

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post #7 of 27 Old 07-08-2010, 11:30 AM
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Because contrary to popular belief, not all pros have perfect eq. A lot of the high leveled riders are more effective than pretty, so they have their own slew of bad habits just like most other riders. :roll:

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post #8 of 27 Old 07-08-2010, 11:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kerplop View Post
Because contrary to popular belief, not all pros have perfect eq. A lot of the high leveled riders are more effective than pretty, so they have their own slew of bad habits just like most other riders. :roll:

Exactly!

When you (general you) are good enough to ride at the higher levels as a pro then all those bad habits your instructor yells at you about you can do as much as you want.
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post #9 of 27 Old 07-08-2010, 12:43 PM
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"When you (general you) are good enough to ride at the higher levels as a pro then all those bad habits your instructor yells at you about you can do as much as you want."

...That doesn't make it correct, nor safe. Looking down is something that happens if your instructor allows you to duck to the side of the neck. In my lessons, there is a girl who used to ride under a "Big Deal" hunter instructor. My trainer was actually coaching us in our "group circle" mid-lesson about it. She asked the girl to jump a basic vertical, and pay attention to how she bends. The girl is just so used to ducking to the side of her horse's neck, and she's also looking down because of it, that it was very hard for her to stay centered over her mare's neck.

I WILL add- Jumping over 4', it's VERY hard to keep your leg on! I found that out when I was riding an ex-coach's jumper. Leg muscles work crazy hard. =]

Just repeating what I've heard from my coach. =]
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post #10 of 27 Old 07-08-2010, 01:07 PM
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I do not believe I ever said it made it right or safe.....did I?
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