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Distance riding and the eventer?

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  • Distance riding and the eventer?

    There is lots of talk all the time about fitness, conditioning, preparation, all that general discussion. When I rode in my 1st GMHA 100 Mile Trail Ride, in 1956, there were quite a few other riders who would go on into eventing. Lana Wright, Read and Essie Perkins, some of the McLaughlin family, many others.

    Do any of our up and coming kids still do this? Who`s done a 100 mile? Or a 50?

    To miss out on this is giving up a great chance to learn from the ground up, I`d think.
    http://www.tamarackhill.com/
  • Original Poster

    #2
    Should add this---You can do it with your eventer, don`t need a separate horse. Got 2nd at GMHA 100 in 1998 with Wintry Oak, a Tb stallion. Made him a better eventer.

    Not difficult. Just write GMHA for an entry form, then do the work to get him fit.
    http://www.tamarackhill.com/

    Comment


    • #3
      I did 25 & 35 mile rides on my horse when I was a teenager - he also did hunters and evented. I had no idea what I was doing in terms of conditiong though - I'd just get on after school and go ride for a couple of hours, trying to trot wherever I could. On weekends I'd be out for 3 hours, sometimes 4. There is probably a lot more to it than that, especially for a 100mile.

      Edited to add that these were Competitive Trail Rides - where the horse was jogged and had the tpr taken before the ride, in the middle and after. The winner was the horse who came in within the time window and recovered fastest. It was not a race - you walked and trotted mostly.

      Where would you go (you, I suppose?) To find out how to condition for a 100 mile ride?

      One of my horses would love it - but I don't know if I have the time to condition her now that I no longer have all afternoon to ride every day.
      Last edited by Hilary; Mar. 29, 2011, 11:05 AM. Reason: ride description

      Comment


      • #4
        I'm not sure many kids I've seen today have that kind of saddle time. Interestingly enough, if you pop over to the endurance forum, the very idea of anything other than an Arab or Arab X actually doing more than a few miles unless whilst out hunting or something like that is just preposterous.

        Comment


        • #5
          Posted by eyetallion stallion:

          I'm not sure many kids I've seen today have that kind of saddle time.
          Think this is a big factor in our weaknesses.

          Comment


          • #6
            Anyone that is seriously interested should go to the ECTRA, NATRC or other distance web sites. Having done 15 years of CTR and some endurance, I would strongly suggest trying out a 25 CTR and get your feet wet. A 3 day 100 mile is fairly daunting and takes a long time to get fitted up for (horse and rider.) A 100 mile endurance is not for the faint of heart and requires lots of time and education.

            The rules are VERY different for endurance and CTR, you need to get with someone who is competing now and learn from them. You will learn that a lot of what you may think or have learned about feeding, conditioning and riding is not appropriate for endurance and or CTR. . . right Denny??? However, EVERYTHING you learn will be applicable for keeping a horse sound, fit and mentally healthy.

            I am just now getting back into some serious LL eventing and I am using ALL my endurance/CTR skills to get my mare fit and keep her sound.
            RIP Kelly 1977-2007 "Wither thou goest, so shall I"

            "To tilt when you should withdraw is Knightly too."

            Comment


            • #7
              When I was growing up in central Jersey, I had no idea where one could even go to ride an endurance race. I think the disciplines have become split enough that you don't really have the information. The people who ride today, also split riding with other responsibilities/interests, such as sports, working, homework and getting into college/going to college. Yes, the parents' work schedule impacts what the child can do, especially with ever increasing need to board out horses, since keeping them at home is impossible for one reason or another.

              Today is not yesterday. It is not better, it is not worse, it is just different and evolving. Today, the only endurance race I know about is Fair Hill and I do not have a horse for it. It also runs the same weekend as one of my favorite starter trials, in the spring.

              Personally, I do not have enough hours in the day to train a horse to be a decent (lower level) eventer AND endurance horse. For me, it is one or the other I stopped riding western when I decided I wanted to see how far I could get in eventing. I don't have time to do it all. I also, like many people I know, do not have ready access to trails/tons of acreage for training. We have to trailer out for that.

              Comment


              • #8
                What exactly is the main difference between CTR and Endurance. CTR didn't exist when I was growing up, but my vet thinks my new pony would do well at it.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I don't race my horse -- he favours his QH side and is not made for distance, LOL -- but I do cross train with our best friend, who DOES race 50 milers. It has helped a lot with conditioning and we've learned a lot from her as well. It's very interesting to watch the similarities and differences.

                  Sadly, there are just as many nuts who don't pay attention in endurance as there are in eventing. Since there are no speed penalities, folks just go out and run horses till they drop, literally. Several horses died at the last race friend went to, collapsing of metabolic stress. There is a serious lack of education and horsemanship rampant, especially at the 25/30 mile level and I hope that they can address the mentality of "run it till it breaks, then buy a new one."
                  Life doesn't have perfect footing.

                  Bloggily entertain yourself with our adventures (and disasters):
                  We Are Flying Solo

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    There is a serious lack of education and horsemanship rampant
                    ^

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      When I was eventing advanced level I went on several training rides with Dr. Jeannie Waldron. Eye opening experiences!! I also crewed for her and her sister at the Old Dominion years ago.

                      Those experiences were extremely helpful to me!!

                      I did ride in a 25 mile competitive trail ride years ago.

                      I decided that if I was going to ride that far, there had better be jumps to make it fun!!


                      How is your endurance riding going Denny?

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by BaroquePony View Post
                        What exactly is the main difference between CTR and Endurance. CTR didn't exist when I was growing up, but my vet thinks my new pony would do well at it.
                        Essentially, and someone can bring me up to date if need be, is that endurance is a race with gates and vet checks and a rider can get off and run along side the horse to spell him. Competetive Trail Riding is again a distance ride with strict windows of time for example a 25 mile ride will have a window of 4 to 4.5 hours and you can not get off your horse and run. There are also vet checks and lameness/soundness is judged.

                        There are lots of other differences too, maybe someone more current can help out. Competetive Trial riding has been around since the early fifties. I did one at GMHA in 68? I think. And denny did one in 56 at GMHA. Anyway, it is a great way to really learn how to get a horse fit and sound.

                        And now if you'll excuse me, I'm off to trot the hard packed dirt road near my house )
                        RIP Kelly 1977-2007 "Wither thou goest, so shall I"

                        "To tilt when you should withdraw is Knightly too."

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I'm new, but I have some strong feelings on this topic.
                          I fox hunted and was in pony club for most of my youth, evented, did all the rally's, everything. Never once did I hear about endurance in that time. When I moved to south jersey area for my senior year of college, I was given an endurance horse to compete on. In my first few months conditioning for 50 mile rides I learned more about fitness, care, soundness, metabolic, tack fittings, and overall basic horse care than I could have ever imagined.
                          After being involved with both sports for a year now, I can't imagin being sucsessful in one sport without knowledge of the other. I have been attempting to get more pony club and lesson barns involved in the lower levels of the sport, because I think it is one of the best ways to learn vet knowledge and to begin to understand and pay attention to what your horse is telling you.
                          During my eventing/pony club life, I never truly understood the functioning and important of conditioning and overall conformation. I never understood metabolic imbalances and that it takes a few YEARS to condition a horse correctly for long distances. I would just do a few lsd's to prepare and be done with it. To condition for fox hunting we just rode, mostly fast and hard, but never did a ton of conditioning work beforehand.
                          From every ride I have been to the competitors care much more about their horses than they do about hitting top ten, and many strive for the bc award.
                          I will admit it takes a ton of time to prepare for a ride, but i would not feel prepared or safe going out on trail without putting those prep hours in.

                          To add to eventer-
                          During both endurance and CTR horses are judged on soundness, metabolic and overall functioning. For CTR points are subtracted for any changes which occurred during the ride.
                          Endurance is more pass fail, as long as the horse is not lame or needing medical care they can compete.
                          You cannot use boots in ctr, nor can you make forward progress on foot.
                          Last edited by smilesthepony; Mar. 29, 2011, 10:32 AM. Reason: add more

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I did growing up, but now have neither the time, nor really the access to do it. I still do a fair bit of distance work and conditioning (and I also run myself and am hoping to do a human 50 miler in 2012)
                            OTTBs rule, but spots are good too!

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by wildlifer View Post
                              I don't race my horse -- he favours his QH side and is not made for distance, LOL -- but I do cross train with our best friend, who DOES race 50 milers. It has helped a lot with conditioning and we've learned a lot from her as well. It's very interesting to watch the similarities and differences.

                              Sadly, there are just as many nuts who don't pay attention in endurance as there are in eventing. Since there are no speed penalities, folks just go out and run horses till they drop, literally. Several horses died at the last race friend went to, collapsing of metabolic stress. There is a serious lack of education and horsemanship rampant, especially at the 25/30 mile level and I hope that they can address the mentality of "run it till it breaks, then buy a new one."
                              I would love to know what the governing body was that sponsored the race where several horses died. It may be a race, but there are "speed bumps" called veterinarians and judges. They are there to check rep, heart and hydration and not permit a horse to continue until he has the correct parameters
                              RIP Kelly 1977-2007 "Wither thou goest, so shall I"

                              "To tilt when you should withdraw is Knightly too."

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                I did some Competitive Trail Rides as a late teen years ago... I studied conditioning and loved the prep work. Simple as that... I was a fit as my horse and I found the ride painful and boring. I HATED THE ACTUAL RIDE!

                                I did 3 25 milers. It's not for me.

                                It has nothing at all to do with horsemanship. It has everything about desire.
                                Last edited by CANTEREOIN; Mar. 29, 2011, 12:18 PM.
                                Live, Laugh, Love
                                http://confessionsofanaaer.blogspot.com/

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  I'll admit, I'm fascinated with endurance. I met an endurance rider and her adorable Arab mare and she told me a lot about the sport. I've been researching online, trying to figure out how to get into it. Right now I'm just teaching the princess to go out alone so that the conditioning is even possible, but the GMHA LD in October is our long shot goal. If not this year, then next year. 30 miles sounds very doable, and should make our LL eventing a breeze. To say nothing about making her tough enough to hold up and stay sound. I will figure out this LSD thing sooner or later.
                                  http://thoughtfulequestrian.blogspot.com - My Ventures Into Eventing

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    When I decided to seriously look for my next horse a couple years ago, I was being pulled in two directions -- my old eventing friends wanted me to get something I could event with, but deep down I wanted another Arab and I've wanted to get into endurance for a while. Long story short, went looking for an Arab cross who could do both sports, and I ended up with an Arab who prefers dressage - go figure!

                                    We have lovely trails where I board and a couple of endurance hopefuls have boarded with us in the past, but they find they need to trailer out in order to ride for more than an hour or so, unless they want to do laps over the same trails day after day. The closest public park with horse trails is about 30 minutes away; the others are over an hour. The eventers have an easier time of it because their conditioning programs tend more toward cross training and intervals rather than hours and hours on the trail. They still have to trailer out for XC schooling, but that's once a month rather than several times/week. So while I'm sure there's a way to integrate the two sports and I'm intrigued by the thought of it, realistically I personally couldn't do it around here.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      I used to have a dude outfit and we did long distance rides in Arizona's Desert, Navajo Reservation, around 500 miles in 11 days with groups of 8 to 10 people, did 10 rides per season, it took a remuda of 50 horses to get through a season.
                                      No Arabs, mostly Apendix, tought me a lot about geting horses fit, keeping them fit, keeping them sound and how to manage them during those very long days.
                                      I still have one left at the Ranch, from the string, she got a little over 50,000 miles on her hooves.

                                      I did a 125 miler, not realy planed, kinde forced by nature in the Mojave, 22h, was one of those oops things can happen
                                      That I have no use for them, does not mean, that I don't know them and don't know how to use them.
                                      Caveman extraordinair

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        info and links for all
                                        Competitive trail rides:
                                        Novice and CP horses do 15-24 miles per day, but the total mileage for the weekend may not exceed 40 miles in two days. The average pace for a ride in these divisions is 3.5 - 4.5 miles per hour. Ride management sets the speed pase based on weather, terrain, season of the year and footing on the trail.
                                        Open horses are expected to cover 25-35 miles a day, with a 60 mile maximum allowed for the weekend.
                                        The average pace set for Open horses ranges between 4-6 mph.

                                        Competitive trail rides what and where
                                        http://www.natrc.org/the_basics_FAQ.htm#Article6
                                        http://www.natrc.org/where_rides.htm


                                        Endurance rides:
                                        1. The ride must be at least 50 miles in length per day. (A limited distance ride must be at least 25 miles in length per day.)
                                        2. The horses must be under the control of control judges experienced with horses or endurance rides. (Note: Control judges are persons that have raduated with a Degree in Veterinary Medicine from an institution of recognized standing. A control judge will provide judgment as to an equine’s ability to remain in competition. Control judges are not to provide a diagnosis and will refer equines identified as requiring diagnostics to a veterinarian legally licensed to practice. A control judge who is also a veterinarian legally licensed to practice may perform concurrent duties outside the role of control judge such as providing a diagnosis and/or medical treatment.)
                                        3. The ride must be open to any breed or type of horse or mule.
                                        4. To compete in rides of 50 miles or longer, horses must be at least five years (60 months) old. Limited distance horses must be at least four years (48 months) old.
                                        5. There is no minimum time limit for completion.

                                        http://www.aerc.org/AERC_Rider_Handbook.pdf

                                        Endurance rides what and where
                                        http://www.aerc.org/New_Members_Page.asp
                                        http://www.doublejoy.com/erol/Calendar/ridesCUSTOM.asp

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