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Why choose the expense constantly showing poorly over taking lessons from a good trainer?

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  • Why choose the expense constantly showing poorly over taking lessons from a good trainer?

    This is something that baffles me.

    We have an EXCELLENT clinician (GP rider and trainer, trained with European and American Olympic trainers) that comes to our area and some of the show riders choose to go to a show and score in the 40s/low 50s constantly rather than pay for a lesson with this clinician ($150 per ride). They do this year after year.

    Wouldn't a light bulb go off in their head to make them realize they need help rather than pay $400+ to go to a recognized show and get abysmal scores?

    Or take a lesson v/s do a schooling show where they ride third level on an I1 horse but can't ever get the flying change?

    Just seems like silliness.

  • #2
    I'm an event rider, but I had to chime in that I see this CONSTANTLY in our area. We have a plethora of excellent trainers and clinicians in this area and yet people would rather spend their money to run haphazardly around horse trials and never improve/move up. I know some people show for fun, but I'm not sure what is fun about being out of control and always scoring poorly.

    Comment


    • #3
      I hope someone that does this chimes in, because yes, seems completely illogical, but common! I think most commonly I see these riders working with local trainers, and the trainers have them convinced their horse is challenging, and more lessons with them will help? Like everyone else is riding way easier horses The only time going to a show and getting crap scores makes sense is with a green horse (at least, green to showing) where they need to just go and do things and learn to live. But I wouldn't expect to see that too often at rated shows, unless the venues don't offer schooling shows, or above training level!

      Comment


      • #4
        I don't think this is always just down to needing more lessons, though.

        Some riders are nervous when showing, but ride well at home. Some riders want the show ring feedback - they want to compare apples to apples.

        No one enjoys going out to get 40s or 50s. Maybe some riders have unrealistic expectations with regards to their own abilities, sure, but they don't enjoy getting low scores. Why do we need to pick on people we don't know?

        Comment


        • #5
          Live and let live.

          How do these people bad riding affect your riding?
          Why do you care so much?

          If you really want them to improve, talk to themat shows (nicely), invite them to clinics to audit (maybe for free), engage the conversation.

          But hey, if they are not interrested... just go on with your riding and let it go.


          ~ Enjoying some guac and boxed wine at the Blue Saddle inn. ~

          Originally posted by LauraKY
          I'm sorry, but this has "eau de hoarder" smell all over it.
          HORSING mobile training app

          Comment

          • Original Poster

            #6
            It is really bizarre. Even if you want to just show, wouldn't you show at a schooling show instead of paying the big bucks for a recognized show. Then consistently NEVER get out of the 50s but FaceBook your blue ribbon (no score and no mention that they were the only one in the class). Scores are too easy to look up nowadays so it doesn't fool anyone.

            I would like to hear from someone who does this too. I'd love to understand the logic.

            Comment


            • #7
              Most riders need more instruction weekly rather than a high priced clinician a couple of times a year. Ideally they would do both of these and a good local trainer who would prepare them to show and get good scores.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Escada View Post
                It is really bizarre. Even if you want to just show, wouldn't you show at a schooling show instead of paying the big bucks for a recognized show. Then consistently NEVER get out of the 50s but FaceBook your blue ribbon (no score and no mention that they were the only one in the class). Scores are too easy to look up nowadays so it doesn't fool anyone.

                I would like to hear from someone who does this too. I'd love to understand the logic.
                You don't get a blue ribbon at 50% even if you are alone in a class. Doesn't work like that.

                You won't hear from someone "who does this"...

                Especially with that condescending tone... and sour grapes.

                What's wrong with people these days? Is it the perpetual rain?

                Unfriend them on Facebook, Log out of Facebook and go ride...
                ~ Enjoying some guac and boxed wine at the Blue Saddle inn. ~

                Originally posted by LauraKY
                I'm sorry, but this has "eau de hoarder" smell all over it.
                HORSING mobile training app

                Comment


                • #9
                  A $150 lesson a few times a year improves scores? Since when?

                  Comment

                  • Original Poster

                    #10
                    Alibi-18 - No sour grapes here. I'm just fine. It does baffle me though so I'm honestly interested in an answer.

                    But yes, you do get a blue ribbon when you are the only person in the class, even at GP. Just saw it happen. Rider got in the 50s (54% and 56%), was the only person in the class and got placed first on the official score board.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Because most people would rather do the same thing over and over, and expect a different result.

                      Besides, you do understand that taking lessons from clinicians of that caliber is exhausting, both mentally and physically, right? lol. Those trainers don't allow you to have tons of excuses, and usually whip you ass till kingdom comes. Yeah, I happen to like that kind of exhaustion but not everybody is.

                      And yes, a few good lessons a year can definitely improve your scores (especially if your score at 40s), assuming you are a good student, and take the lessons to heart and practice at home.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Escada View Post
                        It is really bizarre. Even if you want to just show, wouldn't you show at a schooling show instead of paying the big bucks for a recognized show.
                        Because they want to.

                        Really, does there need to be more of an answer than that?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Escada View Post
                          It is really bizarre. Even if you want to just show, wouldn't you show at a schooling show instead of paying the big bucks for a recognized show. Then consistently NEVER get out of the 50s but FaceBook your blue ribbon (no score and no mention that they were the only one in the class). Scores are too easy to look up nowadays so it doesn't fool anyone.

                          I would like to hear from someone who does this too. I'd love to understand the logic.
                          I know some people like this. Except they DO ride with the Big Clinician, who is apparently either in the business of blowing smoke or has just given up trying to really get through enough to help.

                          I hear lots of "reasons" from these acquaintances about why they scored so poorly. The judge has a bias against my horse, the footing was utterly horrific, some DQ in the warmup nearly ran us over and Dobbin was SO upset, and so on. While any one of those things could occur and be a true cause for the odd bad test, when it's EVERY. SINGLE. SHOW. that something "comes up" to cause some really, really painfully bad rides, it starts to become suspect.

                          I don't care when I see ammy riders or kids do it, so much - maybe they are just trying to stay positive, maybe they just show for fun or for the experience, maybe the horse/rider pair are ill-matched but they are making the best of it. I DO find it distasteful and deceitful when I see a trainer doing it, though.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I ride with an outstanding clinician in three-day sessions a month. He has improved my riding and my horse's training more than weekly lessons with local trainers ever did, especially as we move up the levels. Such a plan may not work for some riders, though. Someone just starting the dressage journey might need weekly or twice weekly guidance. Anyone who rides with a clinician only occasionally must be capable of continuing the work in between clinics.

                            I've gotten to where I'd rather spend money on these clinics than show -- although I do both. I just show less now than in the past.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Nestor View Post
                              I don't think this is always just down to needing more lessons, though.

                              Some riders are nervous when showing, but ride well at home. Some riders want the show ring feedback - they want to compare apples to apples.

                              No one enjoys going out to get 40s or 50s. Maybe some riders have unrealistic expectations with regards to their own abilities, sure, but they don't enjoy getting low scores. Why do we need to pick on people we don't know?
                              Exactly. A person can take lessons for decades and still only get to a certain point of proficiency. Why do you think there are so many people 'stuck' at First and Second Level?

                              I personally have learned to ride better by going to shows, even with my scores in the 50's. Showing is a lesson in of itself for some of us.

                              I question that there are so many people spending figures like $400 at big shows and getting scores in the 40's. I don't see those kinds of scores where I am. While 54-56% isn't a 'satisfactory' score by definition, I wouldn't smirk at someone getting that at Grand Prix. It's really easy to screw up a higher level ride and put yourself in the 50's.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                I agree with live and let live.

                                If I start showing my guy again, I expect I will likely have multiple shows with VERY low scores on him. He has issues when he is in a situation and doesn't understand what to expect. Because he raced at small local tracks he got used to trailering somewhere and galloping. When he evented, he got an hour gallop in the cross country saddle before dressage. Our dressage shows don't even have anywhere you're allowed to ride where I could get up in two point and let him gallop - so he gets tense and confused, and tries to control the adrenaline and energy. We've been working at home to teach him appropriate outlets for the energy rather than explosions, and he's about ready to start going places. We will of course start off just schooling him places, then schooling shows - but eventually there will be shows where he stays overnight in a stall and is taken out and ridden. And it will again be a different situation, and he will again have major tension. Therefore, scores will be low. But it will be mileage he has to get.

                                I'm lucky in that I have a horse I bought before she was started who doesn't have the baggage. We've had the low scores from her being young and nervous, but never with explosiveness, and it shows in the up and down of our scores. This year we're just working on consistency at a level which is easy for her, with a goal of being more competitive next year. Totally different situation and she isn't one you would scratch your head about if you saw us showing.

                                I do NOT believe a few rides a year with a big name trainer helps anyone who has a fundamental lack of understanding of what they are missing in their riding. And I suspect that's what you're seeing. That person could use someone KINDLY helping them understand what things they can work on in their basics to help improve. Or, as someone else noted, they have nervous issues. One of my friends is working with a sports psychologist on her nerve issues, as at home they can ride through PSG and make it look easy, yet they are struggling to consistently score over 60 in shows. She tightens up and said her brain goes blank and she basically forgets how to ride.

                                Basically, there are lots of reasons, but given the judgmental tone of this post, I doubt anyone consistently doing that right now will chime in.
                                Originally posted by Silverbridge
                                If you get anything on your Facebook feed about who is going to the Olympics in 2012 or guessing the outcome of Bush v Gore please start threads about those, too.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by AZ TD View Post
                                  Most riders need more instruction weekly rather than a high priced clinician a couple of times a year. Ideally they would do both of these and a good local trainer who would prepare them to show and get good scores.
                                  you don't need a $50,000 horse, just a $5000 horse and $45000 worth of lessons.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Eh, I get it. I'm lower level (usually showing Training) with scores consistently in the mid 50s. I'm happy with them.

                                    1) I have horrific show nerves. Even with a reader, I nearly went off course a couple weekends ago because my mind just blanked and I did not remember to turn until way late. Riding at home doesn't help this. Riding in clinics doesn't help this. The only thing that will help it is riding in shows.

                                    2) I have fun despite my nerves. People who see how tense I am at shows might not understand that, but that's fine. Believe me, I wouldn't be there if I weren't having fun or if I weren't getting some sense of accomplishment out of being there.

                                    3) It actually helps me to push myself outside my comfort zone at shows. I could get better scores if I showed Intro, but without fail every time we go home from shows I have major breakthroughs at home. Not the same sort of breakthroughs I would get at a clinic, but important mental breakthroughs nevertheless. Since I show one (or two or three) weekends a year and ride at home the rest of the year... youbetcha I'm going to think about how what happens at the show can best benefit me the rest of the year when I pick what class to show in.

                                    4) In the past, I have stepped up a level before being ready (e.g. when I knew certain movement(s) were not show ready) because I was willing to take the hit on X or Y movement in order to gauge how everything else was going. It actually takes mental pressure off me when stepping up a level half a step early, because I know we are going for experience only. Less stress for me, less tense show day, all around better experience helping with the show nerves. It doesn't have to make sense to the railbirds; it just has to work for me.

                                    5) I do ride in the occasional clinic. Shows and clinics aren't mutually exclusive. Most of my money goes to regular lessons and training rides, where it does the most good.

                                    Granted, currently I am showing schooling shows. But I've done the same thing at rated shows in the past. Right now, I have access to a good schooling show circuit ("r" judges, etc); in the past, the only option was rated shows. Right now, I am the only student my trainer has that does Dressage shows; in the past, everyone under my trainer went to rated shows and I did, too, because part of the fun of showing was hanging out with your barn and cheering each other on.

                                    So yes, despite the fact that I'm showing schooling shows right now, I get why people might be doing this at rated shows because I've done it there, too. And at higher levels than Training, too. If they are anything like me, the reason they are going into the ring and the pride they have in whatever ribbon has very little to do with the score.

                                    But even I would be reevaluating if my scores were consistently in the 40s.
                                    Halt Near X | Horse Bloggers - Blog Directory

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                                    • #19
                                      Speaking from observation, some people don't mind paying for the privilege of being in the rated show world - for a variety of reasons. For some, it's simply about being part of that world even if their scoring trends suggest that that they are not quite ready for prime time - and may never be.

                                      Others love the fancy clothes and the bling brow bands - showing for them is more about dressing up than about riding.

                                      Those who post the pics of the blue ribbon in a class of one are trying to impress folks, and the folks they are trying to impress aren't the folks who know better.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        I guess it depends why someone shows. For me - no, I would not show if I were consistently getting scores in the 50s, or I would drop down a level. But that's me. I know another girl whose goal was to show PSG. So she moved up a level a year, even though by Third her scores dropped to the high 50s and then to the low 50s and Fourth. Her PSG scores were nothing to write home about but she got in there and did it, which was her goal.

                                        Anther friend took her 4 year old to shows all summer last year despite struggling to hit 50 because it was a good training exercise for her. The horse was so reactive to everything at first she got eliminated before "C track right" a couple of times. But she gradually got more confident and relaxed and hopefully this year she can show to compete.

                                        As far as spending money on a big name clinincian, I used to always do that but realized at my Lowe level I'm much better spending that money on regular extra lessons / training rides with my own coach or her trainer than on one or two "one off" lessons with someone who doesn't know us.
                                        *****************
                                        I'm a Canadian dressage addict and I've got the blog to prove it!
                                        www.dressageaddict.ca

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