Show Jumping is boring - as is dressage - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 25 Old 04-27-2015, 05:42 PM Thread Starter
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Show Jumping is boring - as is dressage

Yep I said it and its true.
It's a 100% undeniable point that at this present point in time my view is that show-jumping is boring (but not quite as boring as dressage).



Ok so provocative statement aside what does it mean. Well it could mean that like pretty much every single other sport, showjumping is to me something that I cannot watch and enjoy on any level. That any enjoyment is gone within the first 5 moments of the event happening and that the only "ooh" factor is waiting for someone to get injured/do something silly/wrong/stupid (which honestly when it happens right in front of you tends to be tinged with the - are they ok are they ok are they - oh they are both ok ok that was cool).


However I think its more to do with understanding. See those mistakes, corrections, accidents and great triumphs happen all the time and they don't all require falling poles to achieve. However what they do require is an understanding; a greater understanding on the part of the viewer to know what's going on. To see the smaller, more subtle elements.

So why does this bother me? Why worry about it you might say. Well its because put a camera in my hands and showjumping is very entertaining! Indeed it can provide a full days worth of entertainment*. Trying to find the right angle; get the right shot; get the timing right; etc....
However that self same lack of understanding of subtle elements creeps in. Makes it harder to see a moment when it happens or to see which in a series of several shots is "THE" moment rather than just "A" moment.

Dressage shows this up even more so than showjumping; showjumping has a jump which is pretty easy to see and one can generally tell (without much expertise) if the horse made it over or not. Dressage though shows up the lack of understanding of the finer points or even any points (on my part) which makes it near impossible to even approach getting a photo at the right moment.


So all that rambling out of the way - anyone know any good resources (books/website/personal tips) that would help one come to understand the theory side of the events more so. One can say "Just keep shooting and practising" but practice without direction rarely gives the desired result (and if it does its more oft by chance and a LOT slower).



*ignoring the last few hours when muscles are aching a bit more and the camera feels like its gained twice the weight and the light has gotten dull and boring and tricky. ;)
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post #2 of 25 Old 04-27-2015, 07:13 PM
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Honestly, if a camera in your hands is what you need to enjoy an event, then I think that's a fine solution. It's great that you want to understand more about them, but if they haven't really ever caught your interest, don't beat yourself up too much about it. It's fine to not enjoy something even if you enjoy the act of documenting it.

I personally am not interested in jumping or dressage either, even though I know they are challenging sports to master for those who are passionate about them. I love western events, trail, obstacles, endurance, driving, and anything that is teaching me something about the horse I didn't know before (I could watch clinics and demos for hours on end!).

I am diagnosed with ADHD-C, and some concepts are just impossible for me to wrap my brain around when explained by adults (I am also someone who learns primarily from doing things myself, so it can be hard until I actually make the connection). It sounds counter-productive, but I find that sometimes reading articles and books meant for Youth riders lays out concepts much more simply and in a way I can follow if I am having trouble with the language being used - and some authors of adult equestrian books just aren't that great at explaining :P
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post #3 of 25 Old 04-27-2015, 07:18 PM
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I ride dressage and my instructor tells me that even judging (especially at the lower levels) is like watching paint dry. My suggestion to find a little more interest in the sports so you can capture those 'perfect moments' is see about taking a few lessons in one or the other or watching some. Also read up a bit on technique of jumpers and read on the movements of dressage and you may have enough insight to start interpreting what you see.
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post #4 of 25 Old 04-27-2015, 07:36 PM Thread Starter
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Mule - aye worry not I won't beat myself up over it (I'm more apt to do that for missing the moment when I know when it is or not getting the focus on the subject :P). I just feel that if I learn more I can see and find more of those moments to document.

I agree that good books are hard to find on any subject - esp intermediate level (ergo the "I know enough not to be spoken to as a child but not enough that I can read the advanced stuff).


Lost - aye they do say those who do can see more than those who don't; downside is I don't ride at all. Well I did it once though I think its a stretch to call it riding when the horse knows far more than the rider as to what the heck is going on.

It very much is a case of trying to learn what I'm seeing and understand what I'm seeing and from then to being able to predict what is likely to come next - what one expects to see and thus can be ready for in a shot. For a showjump its easy - its the next jump - for dressage its currently something mysterious and sometimes very subtle.
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post #5 of 25 Old 04-27-2015, 10:16 PM
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Quote:
- for dressage its currently something mysterious and sometimes very subtle.
Dressage usually has written tests for each level (except for musical freestyle). Know what test a person is doing and have a copy of the test on hand and predicting what is coming next is pretty easy. If you are asked to photograph at a show I'm sure someone will have a stack of copies somewhere.
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post #6 of 25 Old 04-27-2015, 10:36 PM
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i wont' argue, it is kind of boring. but, if you ride it yourself, you appreciate how hard it is to get things just so right.

I think you've got artist genes, which means you look at everything as a "picture op".

I tend to be that way.
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post #7 of 25 Old 04-27-2015, 10:37 PM
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I think it would be difficult to get great pictures of an event the shooter is not passionate about as I believe that while the pictures may be clear & such there seems to be a missing element- the thing that 'makes the shot.' Hard to explain.
Let's use puppies. The pictures from a person who loves dogs will be better than ones taken by someone who doesn't. One will capture the essence of puppies & one will have pictures of puppies.
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post #8 of 25 Old 04-27-2015, 10:39 PM
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why don't they just put puppies out on the dressage or jumping arena, then everyone would be happy!
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post #9 of 25 Old 04-28-2015, 04:39 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tinyliny View Post
i wont' argue, it is kind of boring. but, if you ride it yourself, you appreciate how hard it is to get things just so right.

I think you've got artist genes, which means you look at everything as a "picture op".

I tend to be that way.
Well I try to at least - esp with the camera in hand. It's just darn tricky sometimes to find the photo in the scene.

Quote:
Originally Posted by natisha View Post
I think it would be difficult to get great pictures of an event the shooter is not passionate about as I believe that while the pictures may be clear & such there seems to be a missing element- the thing that 'makes the shot.' Hard to explain.
Let's use puppies. The pictures from a person who loves dogs will be better than ones taken by someone who doesn't. One will capture the essence of puppies & one will have pictures of puppies.
I see passion as a willing desire to invest ones time and energy into a chosen area of interest to an extent that is beyond a casual investment that most people would invest (if they would even do so at all). The passion might not always be directly with the interaction - it might be the social side, the prestige, the money, etc.... It can have many forms and often as not is not a singular one nor is it static.
That said passion with no direction, experience or guidance I would say is not always enough.

I'd say I've got the passion for the camera and that through that and with guidance/learning I can find the motivation and structure to invest into learning.

All nice in theory - practice will tell how far one gets.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tinyliny View Post
why don't they just put puppies out on the dressage or jumping arena, then everyone would be happy!

I've often thought showjumping would be a lot better (and be a lot easier to photograph) if they just took the rider off the horse. I mean dogs can learn agility so I'm sure one could teach a horse to jump without rider (though it might have serious implications for the design, strength and height of fencing!)
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post #10 of 25 Old 04-28-2015, 05:34 AM
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That's called free jumping, and it's part of certain breed classifications.

I personally don't see the point, as a horse who can free jump well may not be a good show jumper.

Not sure why you think it would be more entertaining, as the horse - human team is something I find fascinating.

You want the truth? You can't HANDLE the truth!
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