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  1. #1
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    May. 28, 2006
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    Default PRO Bareback Showjumping

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0tHHFXNnJ0U

    I thought it was a neat, fun idea, definitely not anything new to the horse world, but as I watched, I noticed some things that really got me thinking. I am by NO means an upper level rider, just observant and curious.

    Most of the rides in that video were what I would call sloppy rides. There seemed to be lots of issues with turning, holding a straight line (I don't mean jumping at an angle, I mean zigzagging and wiggling on the approach), regulating speed, lots of bunny hopping. Clearly these riders are BNR, they're all very accomplished, and can handle courses way bigger, and way more complicated. The first thought, of course, was "Well no, it's not going to be pretty, they're bareback!". I don't see BNR spending a lot of time training bareback.
    However, we all know how beneficial riding bareback can be...you have more effort to stay on and balanced, so building muscle, working on your seat, etc. You have 100% true contact with the horse's back, no saddle or pads blocking communication. If you're ever caught in a situation where you HAVE to ride bareback, you know you'll be able to. I know lots of older, "from back in the days" trainers speak highly of riding bareback for multiple reasons.

    So I'm wondering....
    Is it important to incorporate more bareback work into a regular routine? Why or why not?
    Why don't more BNR/BNT do it? Is it just lack of time/desire, wanting to focus on competition-level work?

    Discuss.



  2. #2
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    Apr. 30, 2002
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    Default

    Novelty and something you dont' really have time for past age 12.....
    "Passion, though a bad regulator, is a powerful spring." -- Emerson
    www.eventhorse.wordpress.com



  3. #3
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    Oct. 23, 2000
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    Illinois
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    Default

    I just watched the video from your link. I could not have had a more opposite reaction than you did.

    I saw some horses that were obviously very "amped up" from the atmosphere being asked to go fast in a somewhat crazy environment, leading to some bulging and wild turns, etc. but not from lack of "bareback" riding ability by their riders.

    I grew up with the whole ride bareback for hours with just a halter and leadrope stuff and I think I would love to look as good as any of those riders did in that situation.



  4. #4
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    Jul. 19, 2003
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    Middleburg, VA
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    Default

    Seriously? The same day/weekend as this silly little sideshow, at the same venue, folks rode around a tough 2 star or 3 star track. Why aren't we talking about THOSE rides?

    I was at Fair Hill, and got a big kick out of the bareback class. I saw some impressive riding. A lot of those horses were borrowed, too. When was the last time YOU jumped a strange horse around 3'6" speed class, bareback?



  5. #5
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    May. 28, 2006
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    Default

    Brigitte, I was also really impressed with their riding abilities...Like I said, I am in no way claiming to do any better than what they did! I just felt like a lot of those bulges, wild moments, etc came from not having as much security in the seat, so not having as much ability to refine/control the horses.

    Not trying to say they did good or bad, was mostly just thinking about bareback riding in general. Should people be able to ride just as well without a saddle, as with one?



  6. #6
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    Apr. 27, 2007
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    zone 6
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    Default

    To me, the horses just looked like they weren't frequently ridden bareback. The horse is receiving a different feel for the rider's aides, along with the amped environment (as mentioned above). If you watch closely, not one of those riders budge. They all hold their position well and do their very best to not bump or grab their horse in the face in any 'iffy' moments.

    I think bareback has it's place in training, but essentially the same can be accomplished by removing the stirrups (much harder than bareback in my opinion).... which also saves the horse's back too.

    I would venture to say most people don't do the bareback riding very often to save the back, save their breeches (hee hee) and just because horses in a training program are there to TRAIN (with tack and full on movements).

    I only ride bareback on my horses when I'm too lazy to tack up

    *I'd like to ad that not all horses are built for bareback. In general, when riding a couple of my TBs bareback, I spend most of my time clenching butt cheeks cuz it HURTS. If I ride any of my thicker TBs, or the QHs, it's not such a big deal.



  7. #7
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    May. 28, 2006
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by yellowbritches View Post
    Seriously? The same day/weekend as this silly little sideshow, at the same venue, folks rode around a tough 2 star or 3 star track. Why aren't we talking about THOSE rides?

    I was at Fair Hill, and got a big kick out of the bareback class. I saw some impressive riding. A lot of those horses were borrowed, too. When was the last time YOU jumped a strange horse around 3'6" speed class, bareback?
    I'm not trying to say they rode poorly. And I'm not saying I could do that. I know I couldn't. I just know that bareback riding isn't really a common thing among upper level trainers and I was wondering if it's one of those things that people exclude, but would benefit from doing it more often.



  8. #8
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    Jan. 5, 2010
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    VA--> Washington (state)
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    Default

    i always love those classes-- like the pony races and relay from a few years ago-- i think it's neat for the younger kids to see too. who didn't love galloping their pony bareback and jumping? i galloped and jumped little fences, and swam in dirty ponds and creeks in my bathing suit.

    bareback, like no stirrups, is good for position, timing, etc. i think they were good sports plus <3 that laine used a neckstrap on that paint.

    as an adult who doesn't want to fall off, i do prefer leather tho
    And the wise, Jack Daniels drinking, slow-truck-driving, veteran TB handler who took "no shit from no hoss Miss L, y'hear," said: "She aint wrapped too tight."



  9. #9
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    Aug. 1, 2005
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    Northern California
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    I think it was great fun and entertaining. My friend Lainey won on my friend Sheila's 2005 Sempatico gelding and I couldn't be happier for them. It was a lot of work to jump a full course vs the standard 1 jump I've seen people at jumper shows line up to do.
    Cloverfox Stables



  10. #10
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    Sep. 18, 2004
    Location
    New England
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    856

    Default

    Does anyone have a full link to the results?



  11. #11
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    Jun. 20, 2009
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    Hunterdon County NJ
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    Default

    I have started incorporating bareback into my regular work in the last few months.

    People don't do it because it's too, freakin' hard. You go from 'whoopie 4foot is fun! to OMG can I hang on over that 2'9" fence?' And posting sucks. Sitting a big trot can be a bit harder.

    And I cheat and ride in a nice grippy suede pad....

    The big up side is it's a super core workout. Keeps me a lot narrower on the horses. And removes and 'cheating' that I may do in the saddle (bracing against this part of that, leaning this way or that.)

    Yes indeedy, no leaning right or left bareback!

    It also makes it very unlikely that I will drop rein contact. Which I do, um, a lot, regularly.

    There was a discussion on the dressage forum on bareback a few months ago. It ended in the pillorying of a pro who promotes bareback and has a 'bareback kit' for sale. This made her Satan, of course. Oh yes, and she had a video doing an I1 test bareback with no helmet. So I guess that made her the secret love child of Hitler and Satan....

    Anyway, that thread got me thinking about bareback again and I've really been having fun with it. I often start my ride thinking "this is just too much freakin' work......" But it really is quite worth it.



  12. #12
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    Jun. 20, 2009
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    Hunterdon County NJ
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    Default

    As for the 'sloppy' issue on the video... well... yeah... there was some "uh oh... how the heck do I turn/hang on/not die?"

    Lainey looked fairly organized. I believe she had a neck strap. Good idea!



  13. #13
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    Oct. 26, 2007
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    San Jose, Ca
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    I rode bareback last week for the first time in a while - and fell off for the first time in a decade!

    Bareback IS hard - I suck at it! Always did, even when I was a fit working student, riding many many horses a day, I sucked at riding bare back.

    Meanwhile my sister, who never had a lesson in her life could tear around the woods bareback on her little horse all day.

    It is a skill, and it does take practice.



  14. #14
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    Nov. 15, 2005
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    Eastern Shore, MD
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by CANTEREOIN View Post
    Does anyone have a full link to the results?
    I don't know where there's a link, but I kept track on my order of go, so I could transcribe it tomorrow if you'd like.

    Personally, I loved watching the class - I'm pretty sure that you can hear alot of me whooping it up on the video - and I was a little bummed that they cut the video before you could hear the announcer tell Laine "Now, remember, you don't have to ride Anthony Patch that way in the 3*, Laine!"

    I loved Danny Warrington's ride - wasn't clean, but man, did he ever HUSTLE! (And was the only one to flip back to get to the Joker without going all the way around the ring, too!)



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Sep. 16, 2003
    Location
    Gulf Coast of Texas
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    582

    Default Article in this month's Equus magazine

    I think it's a Hilary Clayton column that concludes that bareback riding is actually not all that good for horses' backs.



  16. #16
    Join Date
    Aug. 16, 2005
    Posts
    538

    Default

    I wish I looked that good "in the saddle" over a BN fence!!

    I was totally impressed at their abilities to ride it, and stick it. And what kind ponies they rode!

    And no, it did not trigger any desire to ride my TB's with withers bareback!



  17. #17
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    Nov. 27, 2011
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    Madison, WI
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    Default

    Makes me think of this (I'm sure this has been posted before...):

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vkK29D6NHQQ



  18. #18
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    Apr. 30, 2002
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    Default

    Yellowbritches I have been trying to get the conversation going on the ACTUAL COMPETITION for a week, and I'm frustrated beyond all reason at the utter lack of caring on the event board for the course discussion and riding seen. I am stuck all day in one spot and while I get to see every horse, it is still nice to be able to watch them negotiate the questions, so I look for video and pictures to fill in. It's been a struggle to even keep a thread ALIVE about the United State's major fall three day event. If that is any indication of where eventing as a sport is going -- we may as well ask the mods to merge the Eventing board with the Hunter/Jumper one. You are right. The bareback thing, the dress at the jog -- side shows to the real sport. If anyone care anymore.
    "Passion, though a bad regulator, is a powerful spring." -- Emerson
    www.eventhorse.wordpress.com



  19. #19
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    Mar. 13, 2003
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    Um, there are several pages on that thread. Not sure why you are wadded up about people discussing a fun part of the event. I know Kate Chadderton, who finished second, and I think she had a blast doing it- I wish I could have gone to see it myself!

    Of course, I'm a jumper rider, so I'll just slink back to the much-reviled H/J board now...

    Honestly, though- maybe lighten up a little. What is wrong with people enjoying serious professionals doing something unserious?
    You can take a line and say it isn't straight- but that won't change its shape. Jets to Brazil



  20. #20
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    Oct. 22, 2009
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    Quote Originally Posted by retreadeventer View Post
    Yellowbritches I have been trying to get the conversation going on the ACTUAL COMPETITION for a week, and I'm frustrated beyond all reason at the utter lack of caring on the event board for the course discussion and riding seen. I am stuck all day in one spot and while I get to see every horse, it is still nice to be able to watch them negotiate the questions, so I look for video and pictures to fill in. It's been a struggle to even keep a thread ALIVE about the United State's major fall three day event. If that is any indication of where eventing as a sport is going -- we may as well ask the mods to merge the Eventing board with the Hunter/Jumper one. You are right. The bareback thing, the dress at the jog -- side shows to the real sport. If anyone care anymore.
    Untack your drama llama That thread is several pages long. And honestly, events, some big, some not, happen all the time. A bareback jumping class is unique, not to mention a ton of fun. Of course it's going to get a lot of attention! I think it's pretty awesome that these serious professionals can go out an do a fun class like this.

    And wow, those guys can ride! I can jump little courses bareback, but no way you'll ever see me galloping over 3'6 courses at a show
    Quote Originally Posted by pinecone View Post
    I can't decide if I should saddle up the drama llama, dust off the clue bat, or get out my soapbox.



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