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Thoughts on competing the same horse in hunters and jumpers - heights?

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  • Thoughts on competing the same horse in hunters and jumpers - heights?

    I'm interested in hearing others' thoughts on this: let's say someone is interested in competing a horse in both hunters and jumpers. Would you compete the horse at the same height in each, or would you do a different height for each to help the horse make the distinction between each job?
    If we have to nail on talent, it's not talent.
    Founder, Higher Standards Leather Care Addicts Anonymous

  • #2
    At a competitive show the two are not generally compatible in skills required (turn tight and go at a good clip versus going around on a loose rein like a metronome), horse gets confused and, IMO, it gets to be too many classes. At rated shows there are cross entry restrictions regarding what height you can go to if you do another division. Can be complicated and vary by zone. But I don't think a different height is going to make the horse understand what is wanted in each ring.

    However, at smaller largely non rated shows, there are no such restrictions and you don't have to be perfect in the Hunters and all that quick to get around in the Jumpers. So yeah, people do it. I have done it too. We stayed at 3' Hunters and that level jumpers and did not try to light the jets in the Jumpers or go around on the buckle in the Hunters.

    There have been several horses successful in both rings (Starman for one)...but Pro riders were involved, I don't recall they were champions in both at the same show and it was a long while ago.
    When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.

    The horse world. Two people. Three opinions.

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    • #3
      My children's hunter because my junior hunter, then my Children's Jumper, then my Junior Jumper, the back to the Reg Working Hunters. Some eq in there too.

      I did not show him in both at the same show. He would have been OK, as he was a laid-back fellow, but the canter you want to foster for a hunter is not the canter you want for a jumper -- much more back on their haunches and light on the forehand for the jumper, while you foster the lopey, slow-legged canter in the hunters. The takeoffs are also different -- ride to the base on a jumper in that light canter, versus the "hunter gap" on the flowier stride.

      And even more important, too many classes.

      Now I did show him in a couple eq classes at shows where he did both the hunters and the jumpers -- just a couple of Medals, or the USET, or whatever. Much easier to switch back and forth to the eq, as either way of going is compatible with eq as long as it is smooth and looks good.

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      • #4
        My mare and I were successful in both at "C" rated shows against good company...and these were shows with a lot of people chasing zone 2 ch hunter points. We showed in the children's hunter and children's jumpers.

        She was a jumper with a great brain, we could dominate any jumper class under 3'6'' and then take off the spurs and trade the three-ring elevator bit for a pelham and lay down three perfect courses in hunters. BUT we didn't play hunter at A shows, we both preferred jumpers and didn't see the point once the classes got more expensive and there were more jumper classes we could do instead.

        I definitely think its possible to play in both rings at the same show if its under 3'6''. But I think once the jumps starts to come up, its going to get harder and harder (and less feasible.)

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        • #5
          Originally posted by pattnic View Post
          I'm interested in hearing others' thoughts on this: let's say someone is interested in competing a horse in both hunters and jumpers. Would you compete the horse at the same height in each, or would you do a different height for each to help the horse make the distinction between each job?
          Your tack is liable to make a much bigger difference to your horse than the jump height, which most will barely notice, IMO.

          I showed my older horse in all three rings with success - hunters, jumpers and eq. He knew which ring we were stepping into based on how he was "dressed." If he was going in bare legged wearing a Dee ring snaffle and a fitted pad... he loped around like a good hunter. Add a pair of open front boots and he was Mr. Equitation.

          But put a square pad under the saddle and a three ring on the bridle and he was fired up and ready to turn and burn in the jumper ring.

          We "talked" to him once using an animal communicator and she commented that he knew about the ring he was headed for based on whether he was braided or not (and he preferred being unbraided, apparently.) Go figure.

          Anyway, my point is that it can be done successfully as long as you manage the horse's work appropriately and pay attention to the cross entry rules.
          **********
          We move pretty fast for some rabid garden snails.
          -PaulaEdwina

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Rel6 View Post
            My mare and I were successful in both at "C" rated shows against good company...and these were shows with a lot of people chasing zone 2 ch hunter points. We showed in the children's hunter and children's jumpers.

            She was a jumper with a great brain, we could dominate any jumper class under 3'6'' and then take off the spurs and trade the three-ring elevator bit for a pelham and lay down three perfect courses in hunters. BUT we didn't play hunter at A shows, we both preferred jumpers and didn't see the point once the classes got more expensive and there were more jumper classes we could do instead.

            I definitely think its possible to play in both rings at the same show if its under 3'6''. But I think once the jumps starts to come up, its going to get harder and harder (and less feasible.)
            You described me and my old TB. We did B and C rated shows, certainly not rinky dink schooling shows, but not A or AA stuff.

            Any way, we would pick up blues in children's jumpers (3'6") and place in top 5 in children's hunters (3'3") and did medal classes as well (placing in ribbons).

            Main sport was eventing though, were we competed at training level (and schooled prelim).

            YES you can do both, and I never felt my horse was “confused” by the different rides the different rings needed. For him, it was no different then adjusting the canter, and riding more or less aggressively. He could go around the hunter ring on a light contact, in a nice pace. The jumper ring, I picked up the reins, put on my leg and asked for a jumper round.

            Same tack for both, we just looked a little conservative with our braids in the jumper ring.
            APPSOLUTE CHOCKLATE - Photo by Kathy Colman

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            • #7
              Carlos Boy has competed, successfully, in Grand Prixs and Hunter Classics over the last few years with both Scott and Ken. Also, Peter Lutz has a horse shown in both.
              http://STA551.com
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              • #8
                Originally posted by Appsolute View Post
                YES you can do both, and I never felt my horse was “confused” by the different rides the different rings needed. For him, it was no different then adjusting the canter, and riding more or less aggressively. He could go around the hunter ring on a light contact, in a nice pace. The jumper ring, I picked up the reins, put on my leg and asked for a jumper round.
                This is it exactly. Although I will say we often got lucky and had jumpers first and then hunters, so her being a little tired probably didn't hurt.

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                • #9
                  My old horse was getting bored in the Regular hunters (at A shows) and looking out of the ring at what the other rings were doing, not fun for Mr. Trainer when he was 4 strides out from a 4'6" oxer. The horse jumped it fine once he got his attention back but they stuck him in a Power and Speed class the next day just to break up the monotony for him. He hunted around the jumper class and was over the time allowed, but so was the jumper who went before him. The judge was going to adjust the time, Mr. Trainer told him not to based on that horse's time. He was the only one with a braided tail and mane, that was at one of the August Kentucky shows in the early 90's.

                  He went in the Modified Jumpers at a show the week before showing in the Regulars at Detroit and Motor City one year to jump him up at the same height. He didn't make the jump off and was 120 seconds over the time time allowed. He hunted around that course too, jumped the liverpool, and the Swedish oxers and the planks with no ground lines. It helped to keep his attention, from counting the number of jumps, while sharpening him up for the Regulars that would be at the maximum height.

                  We didn't do it all the time, he did one class or two besides his hunter division and only for his amusement. There was no going for time, no making the jump off since he was always over the time allowed, and he was ridden the same as he was in the hunter ring.
                  Attached Files

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                  • #10
                    I too have done both, however at a low level (just like 2'6" lol). Not at the same show though. But my mare can go from slow and no contact to up and a little bit faster with more contact pretty easily. But once we move in height, I'm not sure how it's going to affect her.

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                    • #11
                      I do both on mine. I normally only do hunter shows at this one facility that holds AQHA special events with it (which is only a few times a year). I will do my AQHA classes which are normally 3 feet. Then, sometimes I'll go to the jumper ring and I'll jump either 3feet or higher depending on how much energy my horse has. The highest I've done is the 3'6 jumpers which was tons of fun! I see no problem with it as long as the horse is quiet enough to go from the jumper ring back to the hunter ring(:

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                      • #12
                        The horse I showed as a junior competed in all three rings just fine. He qualified for Junior Hunter Finals, won the Zone in the Large Junior Hunter 16-17 Division, won the Zone in the AA Hunter Division (with a different rider), qualified me for my state's 3'3" Medal Final, and won the Zone in the Children's Jumpers. He was a talented guy.

                        Generally though, all of the horses in my barn were expected to be able to compete in all three rings. Up to a certain point, anyway. Yes, some were better in one ring than another, but they were all expected to be rideable enough to at least go around in all three.
                        "Are you yawning? You don't ride well enough to yawn. I can yawn, because I ride better than you. Meredith Michael Beerbaum can yawn. But you? Not so much..."
                        -George Morris

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