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A Compendium of Eventing Ideas

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  • A Compendium of Eventing Ideas

    With all of the ideas swirling around this forum and the sport of eventing in recent months, some posters had expressed a desire to provide a more concise repository of those ideas.

    Check out this thread for that discussion:

    We've stickied this thread here for your use. Please see the thread above to develop a consensus of what format you'd like this thread to take.

    Mod 1

    P.S. also check out the following info from cheval80:

    Training Level
    Join Date: Jun. 17, 2006
    Location: Mississippi
    Posts: 57

    Compendium of Eventing Ideas II
    Check out the website. You can submit full posts or parts of posts to the USEA and vote on whether you like them. Thanks to frugalannie and baroquepony for supporting and pushing this edeavor.


    The website is still in development, but this will be the basic way to submit and vote for posts. It may also eventually be moved to the site: www.eventingideas.com.
    Last edited by Moderator 1; Aug. 11, 2008, 09:56 AM.

  • #2
    I think we should identify a couple of the subjects to start with.
    Just off the top of my head I think we were concerned about rules changes and how the committees present rule changes.
    Also the safety summit has had a couple of of specifics that came out of the discussions there and we discussed several subjects related to that.
    In addition we worked on the fall rule, and the horse death rule and subsequent things related to those two issues.
    Are there any others? As I say that is just with my tiny memory so far.
    And I can collect relevant thoughts on a googlepage with my eventhorse site. It's pretty easy.
    Proud & Permanent Student Of The Long Road
    Read me: EN (http://eventingnation.com/author/annemarch/) and HJU (http://horsejunkiesunited.com/author/holly-covey/)


    • #3
      Retread, would you please join the "nuts and bolts" discussion on the thread about How to Capture Ideas? Your input wold be appreciated! We'll save the sticky for the actual ideas, if that's OK.

      And many thanks for COTH and the mods for letting this happen.
      They don't call me frugal for nothing.
      Proud and achy member of the Eventing Grannies clique.


      • #4
        This thread contains ideas that were advanced on this BB after the falls at Rolex 2008, but before the Safety Summit. The mods have moved it to the Reference forum (thanks mods ).
        Taco Blog
        *T3DE 2010 Pact*


        • #5
          Thread Links ....


          I am going to start trying to put some of the threads up in this post so they are easy to find. PM me any thread you think is a good one to start looking at. I will edit this post and add whatever.

          Training 3-day---Thoughts (OP Denny)
          A Question Nobody Wants To Answer (OP Denny)
          Endurance riding`s response to horse death (OP Denny)

          more coming later.

          (note: the post that was here was moved to post # 21 on this thread)
          Last edited by BaroquePony; Aug. 23, 2008, 09:36 AM.


          • #6
            First entries and notes for this thread. Please Read!

            I'm about to start posting some of the ideas that have come from discussions on this forum. As the first one out of the box, I have had to create a format and then try to implement it.

            1. If the format I've developed doesn't work, let everyone know. I'm just filling a vacuum.

            2. While I have done my best to identify ideas and in some cases include dissenting opinions and source materials, wording and posts selected reflect my biases, try as I might to eradicate them.

            3. I have assumed that posts made on this public forum can be used within the forum.

            4. I suggest that if anyone feels that a given idea needs more discussion that a new thread be opened up to do it. The purpose of this thread is to highlight the ideas, not have them disappear in 20 page discussions. To the extent possible, the original poster of an idea (in this thread, not the OP of the idea) may edit their post to indicate that further discussion is ongoing.

            5. Anyone can post on this thread, and I hope they do! It is a big job re-reading some of these threads, and many of them I haven't even seen. So anyone reading an idea they think shouldn't be lost please, please post it here.

            6. I have imposed a format on myself. If it works, please use it. It consists of the following:

            - I will only post ideas that are actual solutions to issues, not " somebody should do something about..."

            - The title of the post will indicate the subject of the idea.

            - The post will begin with a very brief overview of the idea.

            - The thread name, post number and original poster will be identified.

            - The relevant parts of the OP will be copied and pasted.

            - If there are other relevant posts, they will either be summarized or copied and pasted.

            OK. That's my plan. I'm going to try and implement it below. It is quite possible that I'll find that it doesn't work, and I will edit this post to indicate that.

            I hope this will be useful as we try to bring the fantastic minds of this BB together to consider the issues facing eventing. And thank you, COTH, for giving us this opportunity.
            They don't call me frugal for nothing.
            Proud and achy member of the Eventing Grannies clique.


            • #7
              Medical Advisory Committee for the USEA

              It is suggested that the USEA have a volunteer Medical Advisory Committee.

              From: "Darren is Back", page 48, post #949, by Blackwly

              "You know, I'm starting to think that it would be really wonderful to have a medical advisory committee within the USEA. I would see at as a volunteer committee composed of physicians, EMS personnel, maybe nurses and PT's, etc. It would be nice to have group who could vet some of the ideas and form a consensus to propose rule changes.

              Or prehaps this already exists?

              And yes, I would volunteer my time..."
              Last edited by frugalannie; Aug. 6, 2008, 08:34 PM. Reason: inserting link
              They don't call me frugal for nothing.
              Proud and achy member of the Eventing Grannies clique.


              • #8
                Organizers need greater latitude to reject entries

                It was noted that the actual reasons that organizers can reject entries are very limited. They may reject an entry for disruptive and obnoxious behavior (I'm paraphrasing), but that's about it.

                "Darren is Back", page 11, post #201 by Bensmom:

                "Buried in the posts above is the rule that allows a show to refuse an entry. It is very limited and allowed only in the case of someone displaying discourteous conduct towards staff of the show itself.

                This is a situation that needs to be addressed -- as organizers take a real beating when an accident occurs at their event, they need to be protected in the event that they feel a competitor should not be entered at their event for a safety reason. It is their liability insurance that could potentially be impacted, plus the huge public relations backlash that could be a problem if someone was injured that "everyone" knew shouldn't be out there competing.

                But, that will take a rule change, but it is one that I think should be addressed, along with a return to play system."

                This was amplified by dressagetraks in post #407 on page 21.

                "...instead of trying to define TBI, limits, levels, etc., why not enact one simple rule which seems like it would cover this situation and a lot else:

                "The management of a competition has the right to refuse any entry."

                Don't limit their reasons. Just they have the right to refuse any entry. Period. Then in cases with contributing circumstances like this, they could evaluate those on a case by case basis and use their judgment without fear of legal reprisal, since they have the right under the rule."

                In the ensuing discussion, it was noted (sorry, I didn't write down by whom), that if this were to be implemented, an appeal system had to be in place.
                Last edited by frugalannie; Aug. 6, 2008, 08:49 PM. Reason: add link
                They don't call me frugal for nothing.
                Proud and achy member of the Eventing Grannies clique.


                • #9
                  Rule proposal suspending anyone under FEI investigation

                  "Darren is Back", page 49, post# 965, RAyers wrote:

                  "I have a rule proposal in this year that begins to address this. In the most basic terms it suspends ANY rider, groom, owner etc. from representing the US if they are under investigation by the FEI. I feel it is a beginning. Please support it.

                  Last edited by frugalannie; Aug. 6, 2008, 08:52 PM. Reason: add link
                  They don't call me frugal for nothing.
                  Proud and achy member of the Eventing Grannies clique.


                  • #10
                    There should be a mandatory investigation/ suspension for the rider of a horse that d

                    While discussed in many other threads, the idea of a rider being held responsible for the death of a horse on course came up in the "Darren is Back" thread as well.

                    "Darren is Back", page 49, post#963 by Annikak.

                    "I am becoming more and more in favor of every person that is involved in a horse death, serious rider fall, etc, needing to go thru a process of questioning. In many cases, I think we would find that attitudes are different, when faced by a jury of their peers. And, I think we might get better answers to many of the questions."

                    In the same thread, Ajierene amplified the thought in post #964.

                    "Horse Death: mandatory minimum 6 month suspension, up to a year. This would be due to rider error - such as Amy not pulling her horse up or Laine's fall. I did look on the Olympic profiles and Amy Tryon's profile mentions Le Samurai's death and she admitted mistake, and expressed remorse.

                    As far as horse death goes, I will give an example of what I am thinking. Take Amy's accident - if she had pulled her horse up right away and he still had to be euthanized, it could be ruled as an accident and no time off. Not pulling the horse up - an investigation and since she took blame, 6 month suspension. with Laine - she is apparently not taking any blame, so one year suspension."
                    Last edited by frugalannie; Aug. 6, 2008, 08:53 PM. Reason: add link
                    They don't call me frugal for nothing.
                    Proud and achy member of the Eventing Grannies clique.


                    • #11
                      Eventers should hold a license to compete

                      The idea of needing a license to compete as well or rather than a mandatory time out was forwarded. Both will be descibed in this thread, but in different posts.

                      "Darren is Back", page 23, post# 444, vineyridge wrote about the license:

                      "This is why a license (like a driver's license) for eventers who run advanced could be helpful. If a rider has a terrible accident to himself or a horse, the appropriate license could be suspended for a reasonable period of time and the suspension would apply at all recognized events, regardless of level.

                      The license would come along with qualification. Increase qualification requirements and issue licenses for horse and rider based on qualification standards having been met."

                      But it should be noted that there were those who felt as DLee does in post#447 from the same thread:

                      "How many riders compete when they shouldn't be, for whatever reason? I personally don't believe it is up to the USEA to decide, what a can of worms that would be opening.

                      If the owners of the horses trust him (or any rider) who are we to tell him he can't?"
                      Last edited by frugalannie; Aug. 6, 2008, 08:55 PM. Reason: add link
                      They don't call me frugal for nothing.
                      Proud and achy member of the Eventing Grannies clique.


                      • #12
                        Mandatory stand down

                        Though it went under several descriptors, there was broad support for a mandatory stand down for riders who experienced a TBI (traumatic brain injury) in competition.

                        "Darren is Back", page 5, post# 86 by Mbarrett.

                        "I think there needs to be a mandatory "time out" for people with serious head injuries. I am no means an expert, but if high schools, college sports teams, pro sports and other amateur sports organizations mandate athletes are made to sit out for a certain amount of time, why doesn't the USEF/USEA? That's absolutely crazy."

                        "Darren is Back", page 49, post# 964 by Ajierene

                        "Rider Injury: Mandatory minimum 3 month suspension or 'lay off' for any hospital stay. Minimum 4 month lay off for concussion or loss of conciousness. Minimum 6 month lay off for a coma, etc. Also, depending on the severity of the injury, you must come back at a certain level.

                        While it may be harder to keep track at the lower levels, if these were in place no one would need any paperwork to know Darren could not come back yet."

                        There was considerable discussion, both pro and con on this concept.

                        Post# 974 also page 49 ,by Buschkn

                        "I have not been following this, but as a physician, I think it is a very slippery slope to make blanket statements about time off and suspensions based on injuries, hospital stays, etc etc. As everyone is well aware, each individual is different, and each injury and case is different. I think it is pushing the limits of violating ones civil liberties. I can see a 3 month lay off, but ultimately it has to be a decision made by the rider and their physicians.

                        If someone sustains a significant trauma in a car accident, we do not preclude them from driving for a year, nor do we prevent them from competing in events. It is really no different except for a perception issue for the sport. I am all for improving the safety of the sport, but at some point people have to make their own decisions. I do think a standard release delineating the specific tasks required for the sport, to be signed by a physician when the patient is "cleared" for regular activity, is a good idea. You will be hard pressed to get a large number of people inthe doverning body willing to take away someone's livelihood for 8-12 months. That is unfair, and also a lawsuit waiting to happen. JMHO."

                        And was rebutted by Ajierene in post# 1010 on page 50:

                        "The original post is #964 and the section mentioned reads:

                        "My personal view.....

                        Rider Injury: Mandatory minimum 3 month suspension or 'lay off' for any hospital stay. Minimum 4 month lay off for concussion or loss of conciousness. Minimum 6 month lay off for a coma, etc. Also, depending on the severity of the injury, you must come back at a certain level."

                        Whisper then mentioned that the above seemed pretty extreme, so I elaborated in post 971:

                        "I understand what you are saying - unfortunately laws are not always fair and like I said, it is just a start. The problem is defining every injury - that would be much more complex and the rules need to start more simple. I stated 3 months because you are looking at 4-6 weeks to heal bones, then get back into the saddle. While not every hospital stay is because of broken bones, all the hospital visits I know of, from competitions, had concussion or broken bones.

                        I did not want 6 weeks because that would encourage people to start riding, possibly before the bone is completely healed. 3 months means no rush to get on your horse, you can listen to the doctor, and still have 6 weeks to ride and get back into it before the competition.

                        I would prefer to have it be more specific, but it is difficult, especially when initially implementing it. Well, not that difficult, someone just needs to sit down and come up with a complete list and present it to the USEA in the proper format, etc....."

                        In posts #557 (page 28) and 578 (page 29), JER provided examples of stand down rules from other sports (Formula 1 racing and bicycling, respectively).

                        Tikidoc wrote in post #611 on page 31 about the rights of the individual v. the rights of the group, and J.Swan wrote in posts # 881 and 893 on page 44 about her concern that other medical conditions would have to be included a well as, and that mandatory stand downs and return to play rules were a slippery slopes that needed to be avoided.
                        Last edited by frugalannie; Aug. 6, 2008, 09:08 PM.
                        They don't call me frugal for nothing.
                        Proud and achy member of the Eventing Grannies clique.


                        • #13
                          XC Course Evaluation Forms

                          Somehow I think there should be a way to evaluate the XC Course changes that have evolved more recently. I think deltawave has a good idea and that idea might need a bit of development and direction.

                          From: "It's time for a little revolution", March 20, 2008, Page 1, Post # 11, Posted by deltawave, Evaluation Forms:

                          "Thinking along the lines of what, exactly, us "Smurfs" can do to effect change: let's make a commitment this year to filling out event evaluation forms in detail, with commentary on the cross country courses. If you feel a course is unfair, too technical, etc. SPEAK UP, right then and there, by filling out the form AND (if you're so inclined) talking to the TD. Be specific, be concise, be professional, but SPEAK UP. If you've ridden at Prelim and are only going Novice now, and think the Prelim course is bad, SPEAK UP. If you're going Intermediate but even your experienced students are all rattled by the Training course, SPEAK UP."
                          Last edited by BaroquePony; Aug. 7, 2008, 05:47 PM.


                          • #14
                            Notes on Idea Sorting ...

                            My approach to the sorting through of ideas is a bit different than frugalannie's. I believe they can coincide easily.

                            I want to get the links to the threads that we are looking at up on this page so that they can be easily accessed by anyone interested in that particular point. I just want to get some of the ideas and links up here to start with.

                            Counter-arguements can be dealt with along the way.


                            • #15
                              Return to play rules and medical clearance

                              I could not possibly identify every poster who participated in the development of these concepts. Following a significant injury, whether or not there was a mandatory stand down, certain criteria should be met before the rider can return to competition. Most significant is some form of medical clearance. But it will be necessary to clearly define the physical and mental requirements of the sport so that physicians know what they are clearing the patient for.

                              "Darren is Back", page 48, post# 942, by Blackwly quoting LLDM.

                              Originally Posted by LLDM

                              Two things. First, The USEF/USEA need to set the criteria for return to play on a functional level. That would look something like a percentage of an individual's "normal". Say, for example, return-to-play required the patient to have 85-90% of their normal cognition, motor skills, reaction time/reflexes, etc., 95% of their short term memory and be 100% free of narcotics for pain control. (This is JUST an example.) THEN the doctors have some criteria on which to make a recommendation - but no one is telling them the specific medical requirements, as that is their job. I am guessing that the FAA and the like do something similar - albeit much more specific. If we give the doctors the criteria, they can reasonably make recommendations.


                              I actually think this is a very strong idea. As a neurosurgeon, I frequently (as in daily) have to fill out and sign various letters allowing my patients to return to work, school, school-related sports and other activities. In general, I talk to the patient, they tell me what is involved, and I say yes, no or when they can return. So, if the patient tells me "I have a desk job, I don't drive as part of my employment" etc, I have to take them at their word. I certainly don't have the time to check up and make sure that this is in fact true. Occasionally, however, places of employment require that I fill out a specific form which details the patient's job requirements. The form may say, "Mr. Smith's position requires that he operate heavy machinery, lift up to 75 lbs, and work 12 hour shifts" for example. If I have a clear picture of what the patient needs to return to, I am able to provide a much better opinion about the duration of the recovery and the safety of his return.

                              So, what if the USEF had such a form? What if it asked:

                              "Mr. Smith hopes to return to competition in eventing. This requires that he have normal short term memory, judgment, reaction time, etc and that he be at minimal increased risk of further brain injury if he suffers a fall at speed." The form could outline the risks/requirements of the sport so that the MD could offer a more reasonable opinion. Then, the patient/rider could be cleared to compete one horse in one event. If all went well, there could be a gradual increase in the level of difficulty/number of horses ridden, etc until the rider was considered fully cleared, say, over a 3 month period."

                              It was also suggested that the MD letter be filed with the USEA and accompany entries for the first events following return to play.
                              Last edited by frugalannie; Aug. 6, 2008, 09:10 PM. Reason: add links
                              They don't call me frugal for nothing.
                              Proud and achy member of the Eventing Grannies clique.


                              • #16
                                Broaden and strengthen the waiver of liability

                                Acknowledging that personal responsibility is the key to safety, it may be time to make that clearer in the liability waivers that are signed on entries, and to use them to trigger better self-assessment by the rider.

                                "Darren is Back", page 47, post # 921 by LLDM.

                                "... require riders to certify their own fitness to ride at the level they have selected. This is a tool to enable enforcement of consequences for irresponsible behavior. It has nothing to do with qualifications. It is a declaration of "sound mind and body".

                                Case in point - riding in a cast. If you think you are fine (and didn't hurt yourself in a competition - thus are exempt form being compelled to get clearance from a doctor), then you need to specifically state that you are fit to ride. That way, if you screw up, it puts the Federation in an easy position to suspend you (and protect itself, its officials, its organizers and its reputation). It is a deterrent. More of a deterrent, in all likelihood, the higher the level you compete.

                                I ran into this problem over and over again at the safety summit. The powers that be had difficulty distinguishing between what couldn't be done now (because of existing policy, or lack there of) and what could be enabled quite easily by requiring members and competitors to agree in advance to policies, rights and responsibilities. "

                                In posts #924 and 926 also on page 47, Frugalannie distilled this to three statements:

                                "What if the entry forms had two more statements that riders had to sign:

                                1. I have no medical conditions of which I'm aware that will make me more likely to fall off a horse.

                                2. I have no medical conditions of which I'm aware that will exacerbate injuries I might sustain in a fall from a horse.

                                In response to your excellent point, PF, I guess I'd add a third statement:

                                3. I cannot sign both or either of the statements above, but I take full responsibility for any untoward occurrences.

                                Not great wording, but you get my drift.

                                I'm not necessarily suggesting that if your answer to either is that you can't sign it, you shouldn't be allowed to ride. If your answer to both would be that you can't sign, I think then the organizer should have the right to ask more specific questions and possibly deny your entry. "
                                Last edited by frugalannie; Aug. 6, 2008, 09:13 PM. Reason: add links
                                They don't call me frugal for nothing.
                                Proud and achy member of the Eventing Grannies clique.


                                • #17
                                  The post about "Error Chains" was addressing how many factors lead up to an accident. The State Police use the exact same approach and logic in their Defensive Driving programs.

                                  The same type of analysis, education and knowledge could (and already does by those that teach horsemanship well) play a large factor in reducing serious injury to both horse and rider.

                                  Factors today noted on various realted threads: loss of horsemanship skills, loss of land where young riders can hack, fox hunt, trail ride (not enough hours in the saddle, not enough variety), change in format (long to short), possible qualification questions, changes in xc course design.

                                  From: "Rolex thoughts", Page 3, Post # 42, originally posted by FrittSkritt,

                                  "In the aviation world, they frequently break down an accident into what's called an error chain: basically a chain of events that lead up to the incident. Error chain events do not have to occur immediately after each other and they may or may not have a cause-and-effect relationship. They can involve several things: weather, mechanical problems, training, reaction, personal/psychological issues, etc. The key to breaking that error chain is awareness: for example, knowing you were flying into rough weather and adding extra fuel in case of a diversion to another airport. Sounds simple, but a number of accidents have happened just simply by running out of fuel because they were stuck in a holding pattern, unable to go to another airport because it was too far and they were low on fuel.

                                  Granted, flying a plane and riding a horse are two different situations, but from what I could see, there were several factors involved: ..... "
                                  Last edited by BaroquePony; Aug. 7, 2008, 07:48 PM.


                                  • #18
                                    I'm Confucius

                                    Ummm...The title of this thread is: 'A Compendium of Eventing'

                                    Which has quickly turned into a rehash of Darren and his choices.

                                    Compendium of Eventing: Feedback for a list of questions would be interesting:

                                    1. Should Riders with Head Injuries be Red Carded for 4, 6, 8, 12 months? Who determines the expertise of the 'physician' that authorizes their entree back to competition. Who examines? thinks about? and has the wisdom? to say, 'ULR fell off, after 12 months, the accomplished physicians says 'good to go', the 'ULR' is still oppressed?

                                    2. Who has the Mantle of Power to assess that someone is an ULR or Not? (clearly, the level in which you compete has nothing to do with this study)

                                    3. Should a Rider with ONE FALL at Prelim and above be E? (maybe TR and above...don't know)

                                    4. Should Course Designers be held accountable for their courses? how is that measured? Sub-Question: is a Course Designer trying to weed out: A: riders who are not capable? B: test the skill of the best? If the analytical discussion determines the goal is B rather than A then, a different mechanism needs to be put into place to weed out incompetant riders at any given level.

                                    5. Should time become a non-issue at BN-PR? If the Ribbon was given because of 'closest to optimum' instead of best Dressage...hmmm something to think about.

                                    6. Should Organizers Refund Entries? We do have Rules after all...

                                    7. Should a Check & Balance System be implemented for officials? TD's, CD's, Trainers, Coaches etc. What are the ramifications when the 'BNT' is found guilty of nepotism? (figuratively) (by the way, a dictionary of acronyms might not be a bad idea) BNT=Big Noisy Tarantula? BNT= Big Nosy Tirant? or was that Noisy? ULR= now that could be fun! SMURF= Silly Mom Under Radar having FUN?

                                    8. Should an ULR be sent back to GO if they break, maim or kill a horse? how is that measured? who determines a person reaches the ULR Ranks?

                                    ULR Ability Probable Equation: Competitive Spirit+ Money+Riding Skill= ULR? or Money+Competitive Spirit+Riding Skill=ULR? or RS+CS+Money=ULR or RS+CS-Money=ULR?
                                    What/Who is an ULR? ...Back to point 2

                                    There is a start


                                    • #19
                                      Sorry if it came across as a rehash of the Darren thread. That was not my intention. It's just that there were a lot of ideas in there that got buried in other discussions. I tackled the 52 pages first because it gave me the opportunity to figure out how to make the process work. And, frankly, it was daunting to think about doing it. Other threads should be much easier. (Except maybe the safety ideas thread: that one is a 900 lb. gorilla!)

                                      As soon as I get some quiet time, I'll reread more threads and try to capture more ideas. But I don't read every thread, so I hope everyone will post ideas that they've seen on here as well.
                                      They don't call me frugal for nothing.
                                      Proud and achy member of the Eventing Grannies clique.


                                      • #20
                                        I for one appreciate your ploughing through the Darren thread (if only to filter some of the comments) but, if I read the Mod's post correctly, this thread is as much to preserve the better content from the shorter threads that probably won't be saved. Long, often-contentious ones (like Darren) will probably meet the "preserve" criteria anyway, so can I suggest you look at some of the shorter items?
                                        Brock n. (Anglo-Saxon) badger as in Brockenhurst, Brocklebank etc www.area35.us