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When Do you Make the Decision to Move up?

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  • When Do you Make the Decision to Move up?

    And what drives your decision? I had one person tell me that they do not move up until they score 70% or above consistently. I hear about "people" who stay parked at one level and never move up but score well and win year in a year out.

    I am curious what personal goal you have in your mind that will cause you to move up. TIA.
    We do not have an overpopulation of dogs, we have an under population of responsible dog owners!!!

  • #2
    70's is a little high. I believe that if you're scoring in the mid 60's and you're training a level or 2 above it might be time. Then if you're at training level and haven't mastered a good sitting trot you may need more time. I took off 2 years to work on that sitting trot. What's the hurry? If you're confident and happy where you are and scared senseless at the thought of moving up why do it? For most of us, this is a hobby. While we love the adventure of the journey to learn new things, we, first and foremost, need to be happy.

    You just need to give it careful thought and do a slow and careful examination of your feelings. Good luck!

    Comment


    • #3
      for me, its not so much about what I am scoring at I level I am now, as it is how competent we will be and what score I think we will earn at a recognized show when we move up. I may be getting good scores (high 60s - low 70s) at my current level but my horse might not be strong enough yet, or confident enough in a competitive environment to move up. Often I will show at a certain level (and keep training toward a higher level), then once I have accomplished my personal goals at that level, I'll take a break from showing for a while to focus on preparing for the next move up the ladder. Then once I think (and my trainer thinks) I can score in the mid 60s at the new level, I'll go find a low key show with a generous judge and give it a whirl.

      Comment


      • #4
        I'm currently showing test 3 and 4 at training level and getting scores in the low 60s. My goal is to get at least two scores in the mid 60s on T-4 before I even think of moving up, my brass ring goal is a 68% on T-4. Keep in mind too, the tests within a level are designed to get progressively harder, even moving up a test with in a level can be challenge enough.
        Ellie and Werther Blog

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        • #5
          For the person with a really good mover with a lot of ability, that is destined to go up the levels, 65 is too low to shoot for, for the very limited horse, 65 is too high, LOL. Once you get really good scores on all the rider things, and your trainer agrees that you're riding well enough to do the next level.

          Comment


          • #6
            From 1st and up I like to stay at the same level for 2 years. I like to qualify for the CA championships before I move up to the next level:

            Level Scores / Percent % Number of/from Diffferent Judges

            Training Level* 5 / 66% four
            Training AA* 5 / 64% four
            Level I 5 / 64% four
            Level I AA 5 / 63% four
            Level II 5 / 64% four
            Level II AA 5 / 62% four
            Level III 5 / 62% four
            Level III AA 5 / 60% four
            Level IV 5 / 62% four
            Level IV AA 5 / 60% four
            Prix St. Georges 3 / 62% two
            Prix St. Georges AA 3 / 60% two
            Intermediare I 3 / 62% two
            Intermediare I AA 3 / 60% two
            Intermediare II 3 / 60% two
            Grand Prix 3 / 60% two

            70% is a good goal, but not for me and not on the 3/4th level that we show now. However, I have a friend who is upset if his horses score less than 80% so it's all relative. It depends why you show.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Arizona DQ View Post
              And what drives your decision? I had one person tell me that they do not move up until they score 70% or above consistently. I hear about "people" who stay parked at one level and never move up but score well and win year in a year out.

              I am curious what personal goal you have in your mind that will cause you to move up. TIA.
              That was my former trainer's recommended score, 70%. I didn't move from training to first until I got five or six scores of 70 and above. But I don't think there is a set in stone number. Most people have a pretty good idea of when they're ready to move up. If they are wrong, it's usually reflected in their scores. I sure wouldn't move up a level if I was consistently scoring under 60%.

              Comment


              • #8
                I'm pretty strict on not showing a higher level until I am schooling a level higher than I intend to show - ie, Move from 1st --> 2nd when I am schooling the majority of 3rd.

                I also don't move up unless I know that I will be able to score in the 63%+ range at the higher level. Which means doing everything at that higher level proficiently. I like to aim for higher than that, but if I get lower than that, I sort of class it as a fail.

                I loathe people that stay at one (low) level their whole lives with the same horse, consistently scoring respectable scores (65+) without moving up - to me, they need to get a wriggle on and challenge themselves!
                If you want to feel rich, just count all of the things you have that money can't buy.

                -Anon

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                • #9
                  constistenly hitting the 70% bogey becomes less relevant as you move up the levels. It's one thing to want to score over 70% at t-4 before moving up to 1st-1 and another to hold back from showing at GP because you don't average a 70% at I-2. While scores are an indicator of readiness to handle a new level of difficulty in competition, they are only one indicator. The ease and competency at which you and your horse work at the new level at home, i believe is a greater factor.

                  Hence we are on show sabbatical for a while! lol!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    These are the Australian tests: http://www.equestrian.org.au/site/eq.../All_tests.pdf

                    I compete Prelim at the moment, and am hopefully moving up to Novice next year. Though, I'm not going to until I can either do a really good Novice test, or can do a half decent Elementary test.

                    My coach is a well recognized judge in my area, and when I finally decide I would like to move up, I will get her to judge me like she would at a show, score sheet and all, and work on what needs to be worked on before I go out and make a fool of myself

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I like to perfect what ever level I am competing at, before I move up. My goal is usually consistant high 60's-70's, but mostly 70's. There is no point to move up if your horse is going to score in the 50's, at least that is my opinion.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I usually shoot for meeting the Championships qualifying criteria for the level I am currently competing at (and schooling the next levels movements) before moving up a level. Dressage Art listed the CDS criteria for qualifying for HOY awards I think. Its been a pretty good marker for me.

                        I have a 15.2 hh paint and we're competing at T3 & T4. We have a show this weekend that, I hope, will get us our final qualifying score. If I can achieve that, I will go on through the winter working on First Level for the next year.

                        SLC2 is right, the 70% marker is, in my opinion, somewhat dependent on the horse. My little guy isnt as "gifted" as some of the warmbloods at the same level. He tries his heart out though and as long as we're scoring well and being challenged appropriately for our level of work, im happy. It is all for fun and as long as meeting the qualifying criteria solidly, I feel I can move on to the next level.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I'm very new to this, but my goal before Atlas and I move to Training Level is for him to have several (4-5) scores in the 70's in the Intro tests. I'd like to be able to hit a 75% in at least one of them.

                          I say this because this horse, in his first two classes ever, scored a 62% (A) and a 66% (B); then in his next two classes ever, scored a 62% (A) and a 65% (B). He is consistently getting 7's on his trot work, and we are consistently getting 7's on our collective marks. Once we improve the walk, which we get 5's and 6's on now, I think that mid-70's score will be very attainable.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by papony View Post
                            constistenly hitting the 70% bogey becomes less relevant as you move up the levels. It's one thing to want to score over 70% at t-4 before moving up to 1st-1 and another to hold back from showing at GP because you don't average a 70% at I-2. While scores are an indicator of readiness to handle a new level of difficulty in competition, they are only one indicator. The ease and competency at which you and your horse work at the new level at home, i believe is a greater factor.

                            Hence we are on show sabbatical for a while! lol!
                            I completely agree! If you were routinely scoring 70% at I-2, you'd be one of the best riders in the world! The higher scores are far easier to achieve at the lower levels, thus, a 70% at Intro shows good forward movement and submission, a 70% at PSG is going to be something most of us will never achieve. If I get a 70% at PSG, I'll be proud of that for the rest of my life!

                            The numbers quoted above for championship qualifing in California are good benchmarks. I don't see the numbers any higher than mid-60's. Another good barometer is the scoring system for achieving Gold, Silver and Bronze USDF medals. Again, "all" that's needed are four or five scores needed in low to mid 60's. To consistantly achieve these scores, at different shows under different judges, is no easy feat.

                            So, as you're setting the foundation for forward, submissive movement in the horse, higher goals are good. 70% in intro are high but realistic, attainable goals. (Halt, walk and trot, for chrisakes...) Ditto for training level. Consistant 70%'s at 1st and 2nd are getting more scarce, but still showing up regularly.

                            As you move up the ranks, realism will set in... as the rides get more challenging, you will run squarely up against your/your horses shortcomings. Say, for instance, that your horse might have a fantastic trot (7's and 8's, everytime) but has trouble with clean changes, so a big ding on the changes keeps you from ever getting above a 6 on the canter work... down down down go the total scores. Or maybe there's a soundness issue that keeps him from "sitting", or he's hyper at shows and you can't let go of the reins across the diagonal at the extended walk. Ding ding ding.
                            Jill
                            www.eurofoal.homestead.com
                            European bloodlines made in America

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Well... I'm currently showing Intro. on my 12 y/o 15.2hh QH/Paint mare. I've been "stuck" at Intro. for awhile now. I did my first dressage show at Intro. in 2006. Shortly after that, my mare tore her check ligament and was laid up for nearly a year. We started showing again in 2008.

                              I'd love to be able to move up to Training Level, but won't do that until our canter is better. Her canter transitions tended to be a bit "explosive." My mare needed hock injections for the first time this past Spring. She's doing much better now, but I gave up any hope of doing Training Level this show season. With any luck - and no more injuries - perhaps we'll be there by the middle of next show season.

                              I really enjoy doing dressage with my mare even though she's not your "typical" dressage mount and will likely never score in the 70s. So, once I get the canter more consistent, we'll give Training Level a shot. I don't expect to ever be able to get beyond Training Level with my mare, but I'm perfectly OK with that. We're doing it for fun and self-improvement more than anything else.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by eurofoal View Post
                                70% in intro are high but realistic, attainable goals. (Halt, walk and trot, for chrisakes...).
                                Unless you've got a horse with a slow jog. I never score high on gaits with my little QH/Paint mare. When I push for a bigger trot, I lose roundness. I accept that my mare isn't capable of moving like a warmblood. So, scores in the 70s even at Intro. aren't really realistic for all of us.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by paintlady View Post
                                  Unless you've got a horse with a slow jog. I never score high on gaits with my little QH/Paint mare. When I push for a bigger trot, I lose roundness. I accept that my mare isn't capable of moving like a warmblood. So, scores in the 70s even at Intro. aren't really realistic for all of us.

                                  You're absolutely right... there are plenty of horses and riders that will never get a 70% at any level, for a multitude of reasons. To use 70% as a benchmark before moving up at any level is a pretty lofty goal, considering that there just aren't a lot of rides getting scores that are that high. A simple review of scores at any given show will substanciate the fact that there just aren't that many 70's at any level--intro or training included, and definitely not many 70's at any high level, and hardly any at FEI.

                                  I would never tell anybody that they shouldn't set thier goals that high, but I hate to see people have the misconception that a large percentage of riders are holding out for 70's as the benchmark of success. It just isn't the case...
                                  Jill
                                  www.eurofoal.homestead.com
                                  European bloodlines made in America

                                  Comment

                                  • Original Poster

                                    #18
                                    Thanks for all the replies!!! Other than one post, it appears that there is not a major issue with staying at a level for an extended period of time, under normal circumstances. I have only shown 6 times in Intro and while we are getting better and breaking 60 % most times (rider has had major issues, not the horse ), I am not ready to consider a move up and think perhaps it is that streak of perfectionism in me.....
                                    We do not have an overpopulation of dogs, we have an under population of responsible dog owners!!!

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Originally posted by Arizona DQ View Post
                                      Thanks for all the replies!!! Other than one post, it appears that there is not a major issue with staying at a level for an extended period of time, under normal circumstances. I have only shown 6 times in Intro and while we are getting better and breaking 60 % most times (rider has had major issues, not the horse ), I am not ready to consider a move up and think perhaps it is that streak of perfectionism in me.....
                                      We'll hang out in Intro together then!

                                      I don't show too often either. I only did one show before my mare injured her leg in 2006. In 2008, we did 5 shows. Thus far in 2009, we've only done 3. We usually score in the low 60s. Our high score to date was 67% this past May. Unfortunately, our last show this past Saturday wasn't good at all - 54.5% and 57%. The judge was tough though... high score for Intro. A was 63.5% and the high score for Intro. B was 67.5%. Only one person all day got above a 70.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        I aim for 2 scores at 60% at a recognized show...just like the USDF requires of its medal program...2 scores from 2 judges of 60% or higher (for ammies, anyway) (I can hear the gasp of horror)

                                        Make sure you are not only schooling all the movements at the next level, but you are also able to ride them in sequence (much harder)!

                                        And your trainer tells you to!
                                        Last edited by HollysHobbies; Aug. 20, 2009, 02:34 PM.

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