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Time it takes to jump over 4ft

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  • #41
    Originally posted by RAyers View Post
    So, going for the full tangent, doesn't the fact folks advocating about the purchasing of a capable horse mean that trainers are not putting the effort into developing riders who can either develop their own horses or don't need the prefect packer?

    Another thread pointed out that few folks know how to develop and train green horses anymore so who is going to create the 4' horse on which a person is supposed to learn?

    I jumped 4' by making my own horses. Of course I am going full crotchety old man here. When I learned, you didn't even go to an A show until you were jumping 3'6". Lower heights were for the local shows. So, I learned by actually doing it and thankfully having mentors who taught me well.

    Admittedly, it is easier getting a horse to jump 4' than to get a rider to do it confidently and well. So where is that focus, on the rider? Or do you just buy your way in?
    Also old and crotchety here. When I was young, back in the Dark Ages, in the rural-ish mid-west, lower heights were for equitation classes at local shows. After that you were showing hunters: 1st year green, 2nd year green, and working hunter (3'6", 3'9", and 4' ? My memory is a little fuzzy on that). Show jumping was only a thing that happened at big shows and was way out of my league.

    And I think it's true that the vast majority of trainers in most parts of the country are not developing many riders who can develop their own horses or don't need the prefect packer. I think many trainers today in many parts of the country aren't capable of doing so because they never learned themselves and many who are capable are simply providing what the market dictates, which isn't that kind of program.

    I'm not criticizing anyone, I think it's just a reality of the situation. And I'm not being cynical (although that is my default setting) - I don't think trainers make a conscious decision to not develop riders/horsemen. Some of them simply lack the ability to do so and for some, their clientele too often don't have the time/money/single-minded obsession to progress to that level.

    I think there are still parts of the country where you will find trainers who can/will develop riders/horsemen who can jump larger fences and train their own horses. There just aren't nearly as many as there once were and there are parts of the country where there aren't any at all.

    "Facts are meaningless. You can use facts to prove anything
    that's even remotely true."

    Homer Simpson


    • #42
      Another oldie here. Back in the day you showed when you had some skill to show.
      Times have definitely changed.

      This judge/trainer sees a problem with riders showing before they can ride properly.


      • #43
        I am not old or crotchety (yet) and made up my 1.20m jumper after buying him unbroke at 3. The highest I had ever shown was 1m. The ONLY reason this was possible is that I had a great trainer who instilled confidence in me to do most of the work myself, and also knew when to jump in if I was getting over my head to correct things before they spiralled. It took a few years.....he was 8 before we jumped our first 1.20m class. But coming out of the ring after we both survived our first 1.20m made all of the effort to get there worth it.

        For most people at that level, 5-6 years is way too long so I understand why people are buying GP horses stepping down. But it is possible under the right set of circumstances.
        **Member of the Ocularly Challenged Equine Support Group**


        • #44
          I think this is an interesting question. I am fortunate to have a safe, athletic horse that could probably take me to 1.2m if I dedicated more resources (both time and money) to that goal. But I hardly have time to ride, let alone show, and most of the time he's just a dirty, hairy cookie monster-- my large, expensive pet. We jump around 1.0 or so at home, and I'm satisfied with that, even if I do sometimes dream about the A/O jumpers.

          The answer to the question of "time" is not necessarily that of a trajectory from training from one fence height to another, but rather the amount of time put into the training and partnership of horse and rider. Will I reach the level of fitness and partnership to compete at 1.2m with my horse at my current rate? No, of course not. But if I took even more lessons, went to a show every weekend, bought a second horse to hone my fitness and skill without pounding on my gelding too much, sure, he's perfectly capable of competing at that height, and so am I.

          Even buying a supremely capable horse does not guarantee that the owner will be competitive at 1.2m+ without significant training and effort. Time is not the question; time is the answer!
          The journey is the destination.


          • #45
            Originally posted by Xctrygirl View Post
            Couple different ways to look at this...

            MANY other countries average riders compete above 4'. On lesser horses, with far fewer amenities and training assistance and they survive just fine. I have watched 100's of classes from all over the world thanks to my "Clip My Horse" subscription and it's been really a positive experience to see that people can and do go jump around 4' with no more brilliance and competence than a 3' class would produce at a local show. The difference is they believe they can, and we think it's some huge thing. It's not.

            This is a really good point. I go to horse shows all the time and watch the warm ups for bigger classes. I see people careening around the 1.2m who can barely post the trot in the warmup and here I am perpetually at 3' because sometimes we miss a lead change or add to a fence so I think it would be suicide to move up. I don't think I believe my horse can even jump bigger in my head since we never do but the other day we just popped over some 1.1m fences and of course he didn't care in the least.


            • #46
              I think there is a lot to be said for being on a seasoned school master to learn how to do it properly without riding defensively or other bad habits.

              I recently sold a horse that had I had a complex history with. We were jumping the 1.20m and had just won a class in Thermal in November, so I think we were pretty competitive. But I felt deep down, we weren't really meshing and honestly, this horse needed to be in a place with better turnout options than what we have in California.

              So I sent the horse to Florida with my trainer. He had two months away from me with just my trainer and he became so much more solid. I thought he would be hard to sell, until I realized that I was the problem in the equation. I think about that a lot as we bring along my other horse who is younger.

              I've been pretty resistant to getting a more seasoned horse to replace the one I sold. I've always had young horses that I brought along with the help of a trainer. I felt like I got better value and built a bond with the horse as we both progressed. But looking at the horse I sold, I think so much of my baggage caused our problems and most likely caused him confusion and surely some pain. Those ulcers we fought, yeah, for sure some of our discouraging rides contributed.

              Bc I have lofty goals for myself in the sport, I've FINALLY realized I need time on the back of an experienced horse to build the skill set and learn to ride the big jumps properly. Especially bc I ride a lot alone and this horse won't be in a full time program.

              I'm trying to think of it in terms of investing in my skillset so that I can one day I can get a very quality 5 or 6 year old and do right by that horse. Every ride counts to these animals, so every time I take that long weak distance to a square oxer, that takes heart away from my horse.

              Last edited by greysfordays; Feb. 26, 2020, 02:37 PM. Reason: spelling


              • #47
                As far as anyone here in the US being able to jump 4'+ if they wanted to...that might be true.

                But the vast majority, at least of people I know, including myself at the moment, don't WANT to jump that high. Maybe one day I will be able to afford a horse that could even take me around a 3' course, but so far I have only been able to bring up average backyard bred honies that are maxed out around 3'3 or below. Sure, they could maybe get around a 3'6 course once or twice with a really good rider (not me), but it would be incredibly hard for them, and there wouldn't be much room for error.

                I just sold my young horse to be a lesson horse at the barn I board at, so I only have my 14.3 hh mare who is coming back from a mystery lameness. If I could get her to be able to even do a 2 foot course again, or be able to go do an 18" 3 phase, I would be THRILLED. And that would be enough for me now to have fun. In my head, I would love to be good enough to go show at 1.20m, or be able to event Novice or Training (which I know is tiny to everyone who competes above that but is huge to me), and feel like a "real" equestrian. Realistically though, that might not ever happen, at least for a while. But I also made the decision that getting to keep my mare around and be able to ride her casually until she needs to retire is more important to me than feeling like I'm as good as people that do those levels.

                I know the point was that anyone that wants to compete at that height CAN do it if they want, but it does kind of come across that anyone that wants to compete SHOULD do it at those heights, and a lot of us just want to have fun at lower heights.


                • #48
                  Originally posted by supershorty628 View Post

                  While the air of superiority might seem cute to you, you need to remember that you have a skill set and some opportunities that most people do not (much like I occasionally have to be reminded that my experiences were atypical because I had access to a BNT AND a mom who is a professional).

                  Most people looking to move up to this level are not going to be able to buy a horse that isn’t already going at that level and train it themselves. Many people are not going to be with a trainer with experience doing it or training people who do it. It taking time, some luck, and money is just reality. Lacking one of those 3 things means the others will have to compensate.
                  I appreciate the posts by Xctrygirl. I do not see them as having an air of superiority. I see the other posts as making excuses. I have never shown at the level you or her have. Do I know I am capable of it? Yes. Do I have the time? No. But she’s right. You either do or don’t. If you don’t because of money or time or both, that doesn’t mean you can’t. 4’ isn’t this impossible thing. The fact that people see it as that ( and maybe it is to win in the hunters) is a sad state of affairs.


                  • #49
                    greysfordays this resonates so soundly with me. I have never ever had a broke horse (not as a junior or otherwise) and I think all the time about how I am giving my baggage to my young horses. I always justify not getting a more broke horse to help me progress because I am a breeder also, so someone has to ride the youngsters and I really don't have time to keep 4 going full time. In reality though I would LOVE to be solid at 1.20m but know there's no way for that to happen in my current trajectory at my age. I now have a semi broke horse to ride that I made myself and we are going to move into the 1.0m this year. Only because he is absolute saint have I even been able to progress where I am but now that he's more broke and I feel how much faster I'm improving it makes me realise where I'd be if I had the broke horse before. It's so complicated emotionally.


                    • #50
                      winter I sent you a Pm

                      Denali6298 Thank you for reading my posts. Really.

                      greysfordays You have landed firmly on WHY I bought Cudo. I needed more experience to learn more and better. What I didn't acknowledge then but am happy to now is that I needed a way to believe in myself after the issues with Gin, Beau and Petey. Without rambling or getting too sappy, it is useful to have a more established (Notice I didn't say made) horse to kick around courses with. There's definitely little bits of minutiae that you never realized you have missed until you suddenly notice a change. I have been called a traitor and some other fun words for not selecting a tb to help give me experience but that doesn't mean that they're not out there. I looked pretty hard and couldn't find one. But I have ridden and helped make up some nice jumping tb's. So look hard at the horses around you. You never know what could be your bestest unicorn horse ever.

                      "Courage is not the absence of fear but rather the judgment that something is more important than fear. The brave may not live forever but the cautious do not live at all." ~2001 The Princess Diaries


                      • #51
                        @xcrtygirl you really are an inspiration


                        • #52
                          I'll just add something that has become clear to me over the last couple of years, which is that 1.20m is where an increasing number of horses will start to question our ammy jokes. My guy and I have taken a while longer than I wanted when I got him as a coming five year old to get to 1.20m due to finances, my job, and injuries, the usual dumb stuff. But, it is also that to keep him happy and confident jumping 1.20m+ I have to be a better rider than I was in the High AAs. He has the scope for quite a bit more (which is nice since I have higher goals, too), and he loves to jump, but it's simply physically and therefore mentally harder for him if I miss at 4 ft than it is at 3'6", especially since he will do anything he can to not touch the poles. It's easier to heave himself out from underneath where I have buried him at a 1.10m jump than a 1.20m jump, and he knows it.

                          Some horses don't care, some horses care a lot, but even my easy going, extra-scopey, willing horse wants me to be competent enough to not make his job that much harder when the fences go up. Luckily, that is really all it takes- for me to be confident and effective enough not to ride him to idiotic distances- and he'll jump whatever I point him at, but again, my own skills have had to be sharpened up a lot.

                          So, you either need to develop those skills, or you need to find a horse who doesn't care if you ride dumb a lot. Unless you are incredibly lucky and find that forgiving unicorn for cheap, the latter generally costs money if you also want to be competitive at 1.20m and up.
                          You can take a line and say it isn't straight- but that won't change its shape. Jets to Brazil


                          • #53
                            Originally posted by RAyers View Post

                            Ouch. So, the key is to not develop riders/horsemen because they won't pay the bills.
                            The business model sucks, and everyone acts like a hostage to it for reasons passing understanding. Sigh.