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    Original Poster

    #21
    Originally posted by JP60 View Post
    I think the risk of driving to the store is much less than going a round at the upper levels, but that is really an apples to oranges comparison.

    One point you made that struck me was this "or the horses" in regards to competing. Now I can agree that if human beings want to do silly things that gets themselves killed, have at it and we'll save a spot for a Darwin award. However, it is disingenuous to lump horses in that same thought for if you asked a horse whether they want to perform in a high risk environment, the answer would be no.

    We are forcing our mounts to enter into a high risk environment and in doing so, we should be responsible to ensure that their care and welfare is the utmost importance to us; to the point where we should be saying "no, we wont do that because it is not safe for my partner".

    Since the roots of this sport was about endurance, there are ways to test that without the need to expose a horse to conditions that can result in its injury or death. Expand the distance while making jumps less trappy, remove watches and lessen the number of complex fences so a rider's score is determined on how well they feel a pace and manage the horse. The idea of getting away from winning on dressage should not be done at the expense of a horse or rider.

    Eventing is not a survival game, it is (or should be) a test of the bond one has with a horse, the trust between the two minds, the physical fitness, and the agility of mind and body. I can accept a horse dying on course from natural causes (if not known before), but it is unacceptable to see horses flip over their back and get put down when humans have the ability to be smart enough to stop that from happening.

    Really, with your viewpoint, let's have the rider get rid of the airvest, the chest protector, and the helmet, because knowing the risk, someone will go out and prove Darwin right. Fine by me, but don't take you horse along for the ride, he or she does not deserve that type of care.

    Comment

      Original Poster

      #22
      Originally posted by Peggy View Post
      WRT the timeline of doing stadium or cross country last. I just read an event report in the COTH magazine where two BNT were quoted as saying they preferred stadium first.

      Just looked it up -- March 30 issue, page 100, sidebar on Notable Absences. And it was Phillip Dutton and Boyd Martin
      There were a few more too. Of course they do, it's so much easier to jump a clear round! lol

      Comment


        #23
        I also don't think that "0" is happening or that there is a culture of indifference. Lots has happened. People started wearing helmets in dressage. Frangible pin technology has evolved. They tried the styrofoam logs for a bit, but those fizzled. There are the wonderful collapsible (I can't think of the name) technology that was used at rolex in areas that pins weren't used. People are investing in safety equipment like air vests (even if untested, people are investing in them because they believe they increase safety). Things are evolving, significantly. Just because the world isn't turned upside down in the span of a weekend doesn't mean that there's an attitude of indifference at all.

        I also think it's highly unfair to say to those that disagree with you have their heads in the sand or are part of the problem. Differences of opinion do exist and those competing are adults and are aware of the risks, just like you are when you go on course.

        Jealoushe, are you quitting eventing? Are you still planning on upgrading to prelim? Oh, you must be part of the problem because you're still competing... (TIC of course)

        Comment


          #24
          Originally posted by Jealoushe View Post
          I don't not want to hear about the inherent "risks" of the sport. We know it's a dangerous sport, but it shouldn't be akin to playing Russian Roulette.

          Then I suggest not posting this topic of thread on an internet forum and keeping your discussions with your close friends who share the same thoughts as you. You seem to be bothered by anyone who is being practical about the sport. You want us to take up arms with you and what you believe to be right, when you don't have any solutions to offer.

          I don't see the point in crying for change for people who choose to put themselves at risk. That's my opinion, and thanks to the internet, I get to share it.

          Comment

            Original Poster

            #25
            I find a posts of the kind "deaths are ok because I like eventing the way it is" very much part of problem. Just as people can have their opinions I can also have mine about their opinions, as it was said, this is a discussion forum right?

            This isn't one bad weekend. This is a constant that is happening in our sport. Deaths and serious injuries, jingles and condolences every other week it seems during show season. Why does this thread turn into a thread about how there isn't really an issue. This is why I feel like the modern mentality is just out of touch with reality.

            I don't know where I ever said that people competing are part of the problem..so that comment was unnecessary. A lot of those who are doing research on their own time are out competing all year.

            Comment


              #26
              There were stats posted in another thread on the past ~5 years and there had not been an increasing trend. It would be more interesting to see older stats, 80s/90s etc, if those are available.

              It does appear that our tolerance for risk in the sport is declining. And accidents are reported more widely.

              Everyone wants eventing to be safer, but I think the real issue is that nobody knows what to *do*
              Most of the changes eventing has made in the name of safety have not been popular.
              There are ideas thrown around, but no real consensus as to where the problem lies, or which changes might actually make a difference.

              Comment

                Original Poster

                #27
                Originally posted by kmartin85 View Post
                Then I suggest not posting this topic of thread on an internet forum and keeping your discussions with your close friends who share the same thoughts as you. You seem to be bothered by anyone who is being practical about the sport. You want us to take up arms with you and what you believe to be right, when you don't have any solutions to offer.

                I don't see the point in crying for change for people who choose to put themselves at risk. That's my opinion, and thanks to the internet, I get to share it.
                I was hoping for discussions of possible solutions...not denial, that's all. Carry on with your internet rights.

                Comment


                  #28
                  I think every accident should be fully investigated, I think there should be more scientific studies on various aspects of the safety of the sport. I think we don't have enough data to say what is or isn't going on and that's ridiculous.

                  All of that being said, I do also believe there will always be a certain level of risk and a certain level of crap happens. I've seen horses take one weird and ultimately fatal step lengthening the trot across the diagonal in an indoor. I've seen horse and rider meet a jump perfectly and for whatever reason not stick the landing. I've seen a rotational fall, at the trot, over a ground pole. There will always be horse and rider injuries and fatalities, not just in eventing, but in the totality of horses around the world.

                  If there are commonalities to be explored, then we should by all means have the data produced. It's is shameful our PTB seem so afraid of data.

                  But I don't expect there to be a magic bullet found that will mean no one ever dies or is injured in or outside of competition.
                  Phoenix Farm ~ Breeding-Training-Sales
                  Eventing, Dressage, Young Horses
                  www.phoenixsporthorses.com
                  Check out my new blog: http://califcountrymom.blogspot.com

                  Comment


                    #29
                    Originally posted by 4Martini View Post
                    I do not attend Rolex because I don't want to see a horse die and a rider seriously injured.
                    I am with you on this - Eventing wants more "spectators" - lets put an end to the carnage.

                    I used to event, started back in the late 80's - was "out" (money time) of the sport by the early 2000's. Since then, I jump judged, spectated - but now? I have even stepped away from that.

                    Last time I took my husband to an event to watch - we got to see THIS. (thank goodness everyone walked away from this one).

                    No thanks - I can't justify it. I can't bring people to watch it. *I* don't want to see these accidents.

                    When my husband suggested a trip to Rolex, I said no thanks, I rather do something else.
                    APPSOLUTE CHOCKLATE - Photo by Kathy Colman

                    Comment


                      #30
                      Originally posted by Jealoushe View Post
                      I find a posts of the kind "deaths are ok because I like eventing the way it is" very much part of problem. Just as people can have their opinions I can also have mine about their opinions, as it was said, this is a discussion forum right?

                      This isn't one bad weekend. This is a constant that is happening in our sport. Deaths and serious injuries, jingles and condolences every other week it seems during show season. Why does this thread turn into a thread about how there isn't really an issue. This is why I feel like the modern mentality is just out of touch with reality.

                      I don't know where I ever said that people competing are part of the problem..so that comment was unnecessary. A lot of those who are doing research on their own time are out competing all year.
                      I haven't read any post on this thread that said any of the deaths that have been experienced are ok. You are twisting the words of what others are saying.

                      Comment


                        #31
                        Originally posted by RAyers View Post
                        Nothing will be done until there is enough of a push from the constituents to force the USEF/FEI/safety device manufacturers to do something.

                        At the moment, a majority of riders and professionals are happy to accept how and why the USEF is concerning its safety efforts.
                        Agree with everything you say but this

                        At the moment, a minority of vocal riders and professionals with clout are happy to accept how and why....

                        When the USEF tried to change some rules somewhat under the radar, the large majority of lower lever riders were able to push back enough to at least put a pause in the changes, but most times, even as they may say "we don't like this" they are overridden by a strong, vocal minority.

                        There are two sports under the umbrella of Eventing, anything from Prelim up and the levels of Training and below. I see you comment reflecting the attitude and position of the Upper levels, pretty much the professional circuit, while many in the lower levels would rather not accept such carnage thus push back when we see it try to creep down.

                        As dramatic as it sounds, the USEA should split and form two entirely different organizations. One that focuses solely on upper level Eventing (prelim or advanced on up) and one that focuses on Training and below. Both can promote the sport anyway they wish, regulate to better match the safety and performance needs of the population they are supporting.

                        We all understand that Eventing has risks. However the risks are mitigated by the complexity and intensity of what is put in front of the rider. Kmartin85 can gladly take the very high risk road in upper level Eventing, but his/her attitude is not one that needs to be pushed onto people who are primarily in this sport to enjoy a good challenge, test their horseriding skills and still feel like they can go home at the end of the weekend.

                        Comment

                          Original Poster

                          #32
                          This was what I was referring to, that's my take on it anyways.

                          Originally posted by kmartin85 View Post
                          What do you propose the Eventing community do to lower these risks? Should we make the jumps smaller, take out the XC phase all together? I don't see a viable solution because you lose the heart of the sport when you change it from what it is now. I don't think the jumps are too big or that the horses are pushed too hard or too fast. I think there are unfortunate accidents, that's all.

                          Comment


                            #33
                            Curious - how long have you been involved with eventing?

                            Originally posted by kmartin85 View Post
                            I don't consider Eventing any more dangerous than any other sport that involves high levels of risk and skill.
                            And as for this quote - eventing is fairly risky, to the point it has been named the MOST dangerous Olympic sport.

                            But you know what sets our sport aside from many Olympic sports? Ours involves an animal which does not have the cognitive ability to assess the risk the RIDER is exposing it to.

                            Equestrian Eventing: The Olympics' Most Dangerous Sport?
                            APPSOLUTE CHOCKLATE - Photo by Kathy Colman

                            Comment


                              #34
                              Originally posted by Jealoushe View Post
                              I find a posts of the kind "deaths are ok because I like eventing the way it is" very much part of problem. Just as people can have their opinions I can also have mine about their opinions, as it was said, this is a discussion forum right?
                              So do I, but I haven't seen any of those. Instead I saw a few people say that there will always be risk and adults are able to make the decision of how much risk they are willing to take.

                              This isn't one bad weekend. This is a constant that is happening in our sport. Deaths and serious injuries, jingles and condolences every other week it seems during show season. Why does this thread turn into a thread about how there isn't really an issue. This is why I feel like the modern mentality is just out of touch with reality.
                              I didn't say that. I said that the accidents happened over the last few weekends and nothing drastic has changed in a weekend. Yes, accidents have been happening for ever in the sport, but so has change. Safety has also evolved. I don't believe that nothing is happening. But I also don't believe there's a cut and dry answer to the problem or else it would be done. Reality (since that's what you want to deal in) to make eventing safer would be to eliminate eventing. That's it. That's probably the only thing that will actually stop accidents from happening. How do you like reality?

                              I don't know where I ever said that people competing are part of the problem..so that comment was unnecessary. A lot of those who are doing research on their own time are out competing all year.
                              Did you miss my TIC (tongue in cheek) that I put beside my comment? If you think that eventing is so dangerous and the levels of risk are so abhorrent, why do you still compete? It's an honest question. If you're still competing on these modern courses in this modern eventing that you seem to hate all aspects of, why do you do it? Because I've never seen anything positive come out of your mouth (rather, fingers) about the sport as it is. So why do you do it?

                              Comment


                                #35
                                Originally posted by kmartin85 View Post
                                I guess this is where we will have to agree to disagree - I don't see the sport as dangerous in the same sense you do. I don't consider Eventing any more dangerous than any other sport that involves high levels of risk and skill.

                                What do you propose the Eventing community do to lower these risks? Should we make the jumps smaller, take out the XC phase all together? I don't see a viable solution because you lose the heart of the sport when you change it from what it is now. I don't think the jumps are too big or that the horses are pushed too hard or too fast. I think there are unfortunate accidents, that's all.
                                There are aspects of your post with which I agree. But I also think that there are proactive things that we have done and should continue to do with renewed energy to reduce the probability of accidents to horse and rider. We need to really channel resources and energy into safety even more than has occurred over the past 5 years.

                                But, remember y'all: the sport IS safer now than it has been in the past. We have made progress toward better safety. Maybe the frangible pins help; maybe they do not. Maybe better safety vest and helmet design help; maybe they do not. Maybe dropping the long format has helped; maybe not. There are a million things that we can do to increase safety and we need focus, focus, focus, and teamwork, not individual one-person teams.

                                Certainly our xc courses seem more safe than in the past - when there was poor footing, horses that drowned, for cripes sake, snakey fences that you could slide under and be trapped, and so forth. It is better. But it is never going to be better enough.

                                The accidents and deaths this year are heartbreaking and distressing. But over all, these accidents have not increased over the past decade. The percentage of accidents, rotational and otherwise, have decreased significantly.

                                That being said, this needs to be a reminder that we are just beginning to address safety issues and this needs to be considered a beginning.

                                It is tragic and we need to make the sport safer. I have three friends who has tragic accidents over 15 years ago, two quadriplegic and one seriously brain damaged (she meets me for the first time every time I see her). They got little to no press back then, during that time period since we had to either hear word of mouth, or through the printed media. Many LL riders and trainers did not even know about these losses. We all heard about Christopher Reeves, because he was a famous actor.

                                Good that we have social media and instant news as accidents are far more salient and more likely to cause a strong reaction (justifiably). And our strong reactions then, hopefully, result in action.

                                I get a bit annoyed when people act as though accidents are a recent thing and not of the past. They have always happened and at a higher rate (again percentage of starters) historically, than they do now. However, this year has been bad. I can only pray and hope that this is at least partly a statistical anomaly and that we will not see this level of accidents for the remainder of the year. I hope we never see another one, but that is not going to happen.

                                I am not an expert on safety. I do not know what will work or not work or where funds and expertise need to be channeled. I do know something about group dynamics and I do think that the "safety committee" needs to be functional and have good communication, with common goals, proximal and distal, along with good working relationships. I suspect that to enter into that committee, we need to be cognizant of such group dynamics, and the perception and impact of a new member, or proposed member.

                                No one NO ONE is against making our sport safer. Everyone EVERYONE wants it to be safer and safer and safer.

                                Knee jerk reactions implying that the sport is so much worse than it used to be.... I just have to put my foot down on that. Not so, not so. Stop it. It is not worse. We just know about it. And that is a good thing. Because we can now do something about it.

                                Comment


                                  #36
                                  Jealoushe, I did read a report somewhere. Wherever that was I do not recall. It is important to remember we're talking about the rate of injury, not the instance of injury. 5 deaths are a lot, but it's important to remember that it is 5 out of how many thousands (tens of thousands) of starts.

                                  The fact is you are not (at all) likely to sustain serious injury in this sport unless you are an upper level rider on an upper level course. These are grown ups who make their own decisions.

                                  Since her injury is one of the ones that sparked this thread.... this fence that Jessica fell at has been on course for years without incident (though, if it's the one I am thinking of it's a scary fence!!!!). Is it the fence's fault the horse fell? The course designers? This horse fell in October in Ocala, whose fault was it then? If there was no problem with the Ocala fence from any other horse/rider combination either, at what point do we raise the uncomfortable question as to whether the horse is a fit for this type of career? Is the rider making bad decisions by continuing to campaign it or under too much pressure from the owners? Just a string of (really really) bad luck? Why would the course designers be the ones thrown under the bus for this? Why do we ALWAYS blame the courses? I know she's a fan favorite and I like her too... but it's important to remain objective. Everyone makes mistakes and bad decisions.

                                  Comment

                                    Original Poster

                                    #37
                                    Originally posted by Jazzy Lady View Post
                                    So do I, but I haven't seen any of those. Instead I saw a few people say that there will always be risk and adults are able to make the decision of how much risk they are willing to take.

                                    I didn't say that. I said that the accidents happened over the last few weekends and nothing drastic has changed in a weekend. Yes, accidents have been happening for ever in the sport, but so has change. Safety has also evolved. I don't believe that nothing is happening. But I also don't believe there's a cut and dry answer to the problem or else it would be done. Reality (since that's what you want to deal in) to make eventing safer would be to eliminate eventing. That's it. That's probably the only thing that will actually stop accidents from happening. How do you like reality?



                                    Did you miss my TIC (tongue in cheek) that I put beside my comment? If you think that eventing is so dangerous and the levels of risk are so abhorrent, why do you still compete? It's an honest question. If you're still competing on these modern courses in this modern eventing that you seem to hate all aspects of, why do you do it? Because I've never seen anything positive come out of your mouth (rather, fingers) about the sport as it is. So why do you do it?
                                    well actually I never said "no accidents". I'm not delusional. I know accidents happen. I know horses and probably people will die in this sport like any sport, but enough is enough. These aren't "freak accidents anymore". These are regularly occurring accidents that are destroying lives forever. Why can I not be upset about horses and riders being hurt without being a hater of eventing.

                                    Your view on me is interesting because I love the sport of eventing and I always have, a lot of what I dislike is entrenched in the professional side of things. The lack of concern over safety is the biggest bother to me. Perhaps you feel that way because you don't actually know me. I read your comment. I chose to ignore it because my personal life has nothing to do with this thread.

                                    I don't hate modern eventing at all. Do I think things need to change? Yep.

                                    Comment


                                      #38
                                      Originally posted by Jazzy Lady View Post
                                      I also don't think that "0" is happening or that there is a culture of indifference. Lots has happened. People started wearing helmets in dressage. Frangible pin technology has evolved. They tried the styrofoam logs for a bit, but those fizzled. There are the wonderful collapsible (I can't think of the name) technology that was used at rolex in areas that pins weren't used. People are investing in safety equipment like air vests (even if untested, people are investing in them because they believe they increase safety). Things are evolving, significantly. Just because the world isn't turned upside down in the span of a weekend doesn't mean that there's an attitude of indifference at all.
                                      ...

                                      I think you describe a great example of a culture of indifference. The only reason safety equipment is being used is because the consumer is doing it. It is not being driven by the entity who actually has ownership and control. It is similar to the 70s when seatbelts were an optional equipment when you bought a car. OR back in the 1920s when foundries simply looked at employees and expendable supplies. It didn't matter if your buddy fell in the furnace or was immolated upon cracking the flask. They didn't need to put up chains or supply safety gear and if a person had said gear, they were considered "weak."

                                      There is actually enough information out there to make wisely considered decisions (rule changes, fence design changes, course design changes) that USEF and FEI could follow in creating a better safety environment. It is the ignorance of this information/data and/or the lack of motivation to gather this data that the culture/environment of indifference exists.

                                      Comment

                                        Original Poster

                                        #39
                                        Originally posted by Manahmanah View Post

                                        Since her injury is one of the ones that sparked this thread.... this fence that Jessica fell at has been on course for years without incident (though, if it's the one I am thinking of it's a scary fence!!!!). Is it the fence's fault the horse fell? The course designers? This horse fell in October in Ocala, whose fault was it then? If there was no problem with the Ocala fence from any other horse/rider combination either, at what point do we raise the uncomfortable question as to whether the horse is a fit for this type of career? Is the rider making bad decisions by continuing to campaign it or under too much pressure from the owners? Just a string of (really really) bad luck? Why would the course designers be the ones thrown under the bus for this? Why do we ALWAYS blame the courses? I know she's a fan favorite and I like her too... but it's important to remain objective. Everyone makes mistakes and bad decisions.
                                        I agree with this. It's not being questioned because you are not allowed to question BNRs choices even if they seem not the greatest on CoTH without being savaged lol

                                        Comment

                                          Original Poster

                                          #40
                                          Originally posted by Manahmanah View Post

                                          Since her injury is one of the ones that sparked this thread.... this fence that Jessica fell at has been on course for years without incident (though, if it's the one I am thinking of it's a scary fence!!!!). Is it the fence's fault the horse fell? The course designers? This horse fell in October in Ocala, whose fault was it then? If there was no problem with the Ocala fence from any other horse/rider combination either, at what point do we raise the uncomfortable question as to whether the horse is a fit for this type of career? Is the rider making bad decisions by continuing to campaign it or under too much pressure from the owners? Just a string of (really really) bad luck? Why would the course designers be the ones thrown under the bus for this? Why do we ALWAYS blame the courses? I know she's a fan favorite and I like her too... but it's important to remain objective. Everyone makes mistakes and bad decisions.
                                          I agree with this. It's not being questioned because you are not allowed to question BNRs choices even if they seem not the greatest on CoTH without being savaged lol

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