Question about the show ring? Actually two...
Okay so i was talking to one of my barn mates about how in the show ring some colors (and breeds for that matter) are discriminated againsnt. Like Roans, Flea-Bitten horses, Appaloosa's, and Arabian's while on the other hand Bay's, Blacks, Greys, and Quarter horses are probably the most loved? Any thoughts on this?
My second question is, how would you explain collection? Or, what is collection mean to you?
Random thoughts i was having today, i guess a little to random but oh well. :D
I've actually never heard of either. Some people like colors/breeds more than others but it shouldn't matter in the ring. Collection means for the horse to be sound and ride with the least amount of effort, carrying most of his/her weight on his/her hindend.
Good judges don't care about colour.
The problem some people have with colour is that it sticks out. Maybe it doesn't matter so much for dressage, as it's individual, but in flat classes and hunter classes, you're going to stick out. They will remember you.
So, on one hand, if you are on the ball that day and nail everything, all the more power to you. But, if you pick up an accidental wrong lead there's no way in hell you're going to manage to blend in with the sea of bays.
Furthermore, usually there's confo and movement that accompanies colour. Cute as appys and paints are, they usually aren't as flashy movers as warmbloods and horses BRED for dressage. Dressage is based on training, but good conformation makes training easier.
As for collection, the best definition I found comes from Charled de Kunffy (from the Althetic Development of the Dressage Horse... get the book, it's a good read). He describes it as "any activity that increases the assumption of weight by the horse's hindquarters"
He further describes the elements of collection:
"1. The horse increases his pelvic tuck by tilting his hips forward by a rounding and tucking of his lumbar region.
2.The lumbar area increases its flexion, becomes stretched and moves with increased equilibrium.
3.The hind legs move more forward under the center of gravity.
4. The joints in the hind legs articulate more so as to lift higher"
A search would have brought up this thread where collection was discussed in great deal including explaining what collection is and how it feels.
I have indeed looked at that thread (very interesting i must say) but thought i would intice people again on collection and wanted to know some recent and other thoughts on the matter.
Wow, very nicly put. I guess that does make more sense, and i acutally have never thought about it that way. Hmm, a little something nice to think about for sure. Thanks for the new look on things.
Also nicly put. The only thing i have to add is that when I think about collection I not only think about the horses phisical state but also the mental and emotional state of the horse. If my horses arnt mentally and emotionally fit or working with me I know that my horses phisical collection wont be as good as it could be. I think about it that if my horse cant work well with me emotionally or mentally there is no way he is going to want to (willingly and happily) work with me phisically.
This is great, thanks everyone for the excellent descriptions of the feel of collection! Now I have a better idea of what I'm after from my boy.
On the color/breed discrimination in the ring, at the tiny local shows I unfortunately run into things like that a lot. My grandmother says that she once walked past the judge at a show to get to the food cart, and overheard her say that she hated black horses and hated it when she had to place them. I didn't hear it personally, I don't know, and like all overhearings, it was most likely taken out of context. I also see that if the horse's name on the entry "sounds registered," that horse often places, even if outridden by a horse with only a barn name given. This I have witnessed. One "show name" (and grey in a "sea of bays" to boot) horse cantered on the wrong lead for the entire right lead segment of a class, rider never tried to correct it, that I could see, and that team was placed first, before mixed breeds and unregistered horses that performed with similar finesse, on the correct leads and diagonals.
Misfit made excellent points, very well said. I wish some of my tiny, local show judges would read that.
Unfortunately, many tiny local shows don't have the $$$ to hire good judges. Ergo, they get crappy ones. And that's when you get the interesting judging.
:( My Paint is Flashyyy.
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