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Question about showing in poles for the first time!

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  • Question about showing in poles for the first time!

    This post is not what you think it is.

    You guys I can hardly contain my excitement. I have a new baby hony who turned 4 in April, I just got him in June. He is adorable and sweet and the fanciest thing I've ever owned. I am taking him to our little local show next weekend to see the sights and show in the w/t poles. I have been riding for 22 years and never shown in poles. Skipped that part of childhood riding, wasn't a thing in the program I started in. This local show has an unrestricted w/t poles hunter judged division, perfect.

    Real question: do I need to two point the pole? I legit practiced that at home the other day and it felt REAL weird to just...two point a pole. Can I just post it? If I two point it do I have to "release" in any way? I practiced that too and my horse was like "WHOA WHERE DID YOU GO" and it produced more wiggle. Baby's gonna baby. Tell me friends, what would you do.

    Alas that I do not have hair long enough for bows nor a pair of jodphurs that would fit a short adult with some junk in the trunk or I would go all in on that. It would get a good laugh from everyone.

    On a related note if someone knows where I can buy a decent pair of jodphurs for an let me know...

  • #2
    In the various schooling shows I've judged where they have a beginner pole class, the kids have been expected to 2-point over the pole. It's been judged a little more like an equitation class - can the child keep the horse straight on the lines, not cut off the corners, show me a 2-point with release as practice for when the poles turn to jumps.

    However, with an adult showing a greenie - if he/she was also a beginner rider, I would expect the same thing. With a more experienced rider, I wouldn't expect you to show me a 2-point several strides out like the kids do. Maybe a slight 2-pt over the pole itself with a soft hand.
    I've spent most of my life riding horses. The rest I've just wasted.


    • #3
      When I did a class like this with a greeny OTTB, I just did as SolarFlare suggests, post till I get there, and a slight two point or maybe more of a half seat over the pole. I was doing it for the horse's experience, so I didn't care too much what I looked like as long as he looked decent. Good luck and have fun!


      • #4
        You are there for hony's benefit, so I wouldn't give two hoots about what's going to pin. Whether the judge wants two point or not is irrelevant. Do what benefits the horse. If two pointing and release is going to confuse hony at this stage, don't do it. That's my two cents anyway . Of course, that said, its absolutely possible to two point, but not lose contact. In fact, that's the very point of the automatic release.


        • #5
          Ha! Regarding the bows. This is probably too serious an answer to such a fun question, but if the division is being judged as a hunter w/t, and if your horse isn't quite tolerating the sensation of two point over poles without getting anxious and wiggly, in a show situation, I'd probably just post the trot over the poles. In other words, not change my position at all, focusing on getting him straight before worrying about him getting used to a rider in a light seat, especially in a new environment.
          Check out the latest Fortune's Fool novel, Courage to the Sticking Place!


          • #6
            Okay, I actually found a picture of my class. Don't laugh! But I am not sure what you would call what I was doing over the pole. Here it is:
            Click image for larger version

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            • Original Poster

              Thanks for the responses everyone! ParadoxFarm that's a helpful visual representation of what I anticipate I will do, which is ever so slightly lean forward briefly lol.


              • #8
                Sounds like a good plan. And most of all, have fun and enjoy your hony!


                • #9
                  PF- what a lovely horse!

                  Hairy- good luck and please post pictures.


                  • #10
                    Personally I wouldn’t sweat it and I would sign up for the class as a non-competitor. I know there’s a word for that, and can’t think of it for the life of me. I would just feel rotten if I did everything “right” per the competition expectations and took a ribbon from a little kid at what would probably be his/her first “jumping” class.


                    • #11
                      "Audit" the class you may be thinking of?


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Toblersmom View Post
                        Personally I wouldn’t sweat it and I would sign up for the class as a non-competitor. I know there’s a word for that, and can’t think of it for the life of me. I would just feel rotten if I did everything “right” per the competition expectations and took a ribbon from a little kid at what would probably be his/her first “jumping” class.
                        hors concours

                        ParadoxFarm that's pretty much what I was picturing in my head - light seat and a soft rein. Nothing too extreme to throw off the horse's balance.
                        I've spent most of my life riding horses. The rest I've just wasted.


                        • #13
                          This was my 4 yr olds first and only pole class. I posted.
                          Attached Files



                          • #14
                            If I were judging I wouldn’t care if someone got in 2 point and I wouldn’t care if you posted. I honestly can’t recall what I did when I actually showed in this as a kid but I didn’t really have much of a release that I can remember until crossrails. I think if it was w/t canter optional, I might expect at least some kind of half seat if the rider cantered. The most important thing would be even pace and straightness, not cutting turns, things of that nature.


                            • #15
                              You're there to give your horse some experience - the last thing to worry about is whether the judge wants you in 2-point or not. Do what you do when you trot over poles at home, make it a normal, good experience for him. Have fun!


                              • #16
                                I have judged trot pole classes a few times. It's harder than you might think!

                                Unless the show provides other specs, I look for
                                1) steady, forward, trot rhythm - like a metronome - no breaks up or down
                                2) straight to all the fences and in the lines
                                3) crossing the poles in the center
                                4) flowing corners - though they can be shallower than they might be in another class (in the interest of time) and
                                5) not clobbering the poles.

                                In my experience, posting usually works best to accomplish the above. I really do not deviate much from these criteria in a trot pole hunter class vs a trot pole eq class unless something about the rider's eq is noticeably adversely affecting the horse or pony's ability to do these things. Depending on the rider, I would think getting into and out of two point repeatedly might detract.


                                • Original Poster

                                  Groom&Taxi Thanks that's super helpful! Toblersmom it's an unrestricted class, open to pros and anyone else for this exact purpose. There is a separate division of poles on day one of the show that is equitation judged with age limits on it (9 and under, 9 and up). I would either not show in that or show unjudged if I did that.


                                  • Original Poster

                                    Originally posted by luckymaverick View Post
                                    PF- what a lovely horse!

                                    Hairy- good luck and please post pictures.
                                    Will do! I have never posted photos before, good time to learn.