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SPIN-OFF Then vs Now???

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  • SPIN-OFF Then vs Now???

    Many things have changed and stayed the same since the early 80's.... lets come together(respectfully) and figure out whats what!

    Then: more TB's
    white polo's in eq.
    saddle w/o knee rolls
    horse rode in hunter AND eq
    not as many grooms

    Now: More WB's
    staying at motels/hotels
    grooms have horses ready

    Same: Competing at high levels is expensive


    Agree or disagree with above (I don't know)...Let's "figure out" the changes, the sames, and differences...from then til now!

    Ought to be very interesting!!!!

  • #2
    I was coming up through short stirrup and juniors in the early-mid 90's, so I might be too young to play. But my favorite trainer, whom I worked with the longest, was staunchly old school. I remember:

    Absolutely plain CC saddles--no knee rolls, no padded flaps (and this is still what I prefer).

    Rust breeches with charcoal grey hunt coats.

    Definitely more TBs, at least in my area. The whole concept of OTTBs as hunters got really, really trendy during that period (though it certainly wasn't new). And as a result a lot of people with no clue what to look for went to the track and bought really, really unsuitable prospects! My dad was one of those suckers. Oh what a long story.

    And this might be trainer-specific but when I was younger I was taught to ride with my lower leg more forward than the eq we see now.

    Comment


    • #3
      wel this has been discussed many times before but definitely the horses themselves were the biggest difference. No "equitation specialist" horses, all did double, and sometimes triple duty. TBs predominantly and smaller horses, much more common to see someone look a little big by today's standards on their horse rather than the teeny tiny rider just out of jods on the 17.2 warmblood.

      Comment


      • #4
        '80s in NorCal:

        Menlo was our Devon. NorCal was less than SoCal and SoCal was way less than East Coast in terms of the prestige of showing.

        But Woodside, CA had a trail system that rivaled Bedford, NY's trail system. I feel truly blessed to have gotten to live and ride in both spots.

        Plenty of TBs and OTTBs who were tall and long-strided enough. The WBs were called "dumb bloods" and were usually a little coarser than we see now.

        I don't remember joint injections being really common. If you knew your horse had fusing hocks, you buted him and rode him in order to hasten the fusing process.

        Film radiographs made things different. Not only did you have to wait for those to be developed but they were ridiculous blurs in comparison to digital radiographs now.

        Ponies there didn't look like the miniature TBs they did on the East Coast. Lots of kids moved up to horses PDQ.

        I evented and foxhunted in a Prix Des Nations and I was proud of it. The Original PJ was one of the first deep and padded knee roll saddles I remember that wasn't the "toilet seat" Stubben. A new CC saddle might have been $400-800. Hermes were the only ones over the $1,000 mark and not by much, I think. Saddles (especially those skanky stubbens) held their value. Damn, those Stubben folks (usually old skool fox hunters I knew) could *make* money selling their used saddles.

        A nice bridle was a half-raised havana Crosby for about $150. New Cavalry busted out with a very different and beautiful bridle than changed aesthetics and prices. Those bridles were the first to cross the $300 mark and to ease the pain (not) they were quickly sold with reins and bridle as separate.

        Dressage tack was beginning to turn from brown to black.

        Field boots were still "less fancy" than dress boots and you wanted Vogels but might settle for Dehners if your wallet had anything to say about it. Off the shelf couldn't match either of these companies, though Grand Prix field boots did a nice job for people with regulation-shaped legs. But as with zipper boots now, field boots became more acceptable when people realized that they could get a neater ankle from those than dress boots.

        Then, as now, you tried to cram as many braids into your hunter's mane as you could. But thread (yarn) might match the color of the rider's hunt coat. Black coats were almost as common as navy ones, but green was in the mix, too.

        Rust breeches were a favorite, but light grey was good, too. Tailored Sportsman appeared and changed things for everyone much the way New Cavalry bridles did.

        Oh, man, and the custom full chap revolution! It blossomed big, bold and beautiful then, well, early 1990s. The artistry you could see in a California schooling ring the day before a big rated show was not to be missed. Think Chuck Pinnell's booth or website but more and in action. It was a standard-setting experience.
        The armchair saddler
        Politically Pro-Cat

        Comment


        • #5
          Make it 60's and 70's and I'll play

          Comment


          • #6
            I don't know this from experience, as I'm an 80s baby, but SO's family made a living showing and breeding APHA and AQHA horses. They were not the trainers or handlers, just the owners, and they still made a profit after paying those guys!
            Southern Cross Guest Ranch
            An All Inclusive Guest Ranch Vacation - Georgia

            Comment


            • #7
              This is strictly from watching videos, but the eq horses of yesteryear seemed to have much more of a motor. I rarely see a bigeq rider without spurs (although I know some horses with motors still go best in spurs) but in older videos I saw a lot of riders without them. Horses were also in front of the vertical, instead of at or behind it on course.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by MIKES MCS View Post
                Make it 60's and 70's and I'll play
                Me tooo!
                " It's about the horse, and that's it."
                George Morris

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Rel6 View Post
                  This is strictly from watching videos, but the eq horses of yesteryear seemed to have much more of a motor. I rarely see a bigeq rider without spurs (although I know some horses with motors still go best in spurs) but in older videos I saw a lot of riders without them. Horses were also in front of the vertical, instead of at or behind it on course.
                  good point, but there were plenty of spurs. My TB cross eq horse took HUGE spurs but he was much more forward and responsive than the warmbloods that I ride today. We didn't need the spurs necessarily to get them moving, but to make the movements instantaneous and invisible.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Then: Had to have the ability to find eight out of eight jumps to be in the ribbons.

                    Now: Have to have a big bankroll to buy the WB that can find eight out of eight jumps while you hang on for dear life to be in the ribbons.
                    **********************
                    Originally Posted by pryme_thyme:
                    "In my area all horse people are pre-madonna's you cannot ask them anything."

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I'm flashing back several decades, but the simultaneous disappearance of outside courses and TB's has led to a very different, and in my mind, transmogrified ( you can use that word so seldom that I couldn't resist)discipline. Sure,the giant WB's can maintain a 13' stride at 5 mph, but they bring to mind the Carole King song "I feel the earth move under my feet..." Hunters used to show with pace and jump and cover the ground with lightness. That's the biggest change in the horses.

                      The rise of the omnipotent, onmiscient trainer-god is the other...

                      madeline
                      (whose opinion is pretty jaundiced right now, as I've spent a few hours lately watching AA hunters go, and listening to the trainers at the gate...)
                      madeline
                      * What you release is what you teach * Don't be distracted by unwanted behavior* Whoever waits the longest is the teacher. Van Hargis

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I loved my jumping saddle- wasn't everyone's saddle flat as a pancake? And we tucked the chin strap on the schooling helmets up inside when we rode

                        It was all the TB's and OTTB's. Color? What was that? It was a gray, bay and red right I recall one H/J barn I rode at with 40 or so horses, of which there were maybe 3 or 4 WB's (all imported) and one paint.

                        I also loved- LOVED my tack trunk. Wish I still had it though. Everything fit but it was so much more basic. We have so many options today- there is a color and size and specific use for freaking everything.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by SuperSTB View Post
                          I also loved- LOVED my tack trunk. Wish I still had it though.
                          oh man, I still have mine, albeit chipped/dented in a few places. One of those massive, ten-ton custom jobs with the monogrammed plexiglass on the outside. I think a trainer sweet-talked my parents into ordering it when I was still in jods. Now it lives on our covered porch and we keep our son's outside toys in it.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Agree with everything MVP said except the timing of the full chap revolution. It was in full swing in 1985 in Mass. I remember one of my trainers getting cream (as in almost white) full chaps with black and brown double fringe and her name embroidered on the back. Of course, she also schooled bareheaded--at the horse shows.

                            While we're at it, I remember when the dreaded harness rule came down and was implemented in fall of 84. We juniors thought the world had ended to have to wear those huge helmets! Of course, they now look absolutley puny in comparison to today's headwear. I can't believe we survived those hunt caps, although I've got a few concussions in my medical history thanks to their non-protective nature.

                            Around 1987-88, hunter green coats became a HUGE craze and the TS became the breech to have. Prior to that it was all Harry Halls with your navy Pytchely coat.

                            On schooling day, your TB hunter would likely be in a full-cheek snaffle, white polos and bell boots, draw reins and a Prix de Nations saddle. You were expected to carry a lot more pace than today, and I recall my trainers urging me to "hit a lick" in my opening circle. Strides were still mandatory, eq tests involved a lot of counter canter, trot jumps and halts.

                            Horses were hotter and required a lot more finesse. Stirrups were longer and position was more upright. You sat on your horses back between the jumps rather than using the half seat and hunting down to the jumps.

                            I personally find today's riding style to be a lot more natural, but I sure long to see more pace, especially in the hunter ring!

                            One caveat for those looking at the recently-posted links to Maclay rounds from MSG: not only were those hot TBs, but they came off the trailer in the middle of NYC and pretty much straight into the ring. There was one schooling round early in the day. The schooling ring was three canter strides long and there were support posts in it. There was barely room to canter a jump and NO longing. So what you are seeing in those videos is a nervous rider on a hot horse with a brand new clip job who suddenly landed in the middle of NYC in November and thinks he's been abducted by aliens.
                            Life would be infinitely better if pinatas suddenly appeared throughout the day.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Oh yeah- the clear snap out harnesses on helmets. You would have had to pry that from my cold dead hands when the bubble helmets became required.

                              Navajo pads that complimented your full chaps. No one has full chaps these days. Well, I do.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                LOL singmiasong. so true on ALL accounts. Hey I had the MOST gorgeous circa 1988 hunter green pytchley coat, had to sell it last year when I realized a. it will never fit again and b. it's hopelessly out of style. Never got to wear it, bought to show a chestnut in...of course

                                You nailed everything to a T! oh and yes the navajo pads were awesome...and looked stunning with my white/blue hampa boots.

                                Comment

                                • Original Poster

                                  #17
                                  Wow, this is bringing up memories!!

                                  Full chaps!!!!! I remember when someone got half chaps
                                  (80's) at the barn and I thought YUCK!!!! how tacky.......oh my things change...love my half chaps now....

                                  Huph...the helmets with the plastic!!!! ugh.....

                                  I still love the pancake saddles!!!! Still have my tack trunk and will keep it always!!!!

                                  I used to call WB's Dumb Bloods.... oh my, now i have one...

                                  Never say never!!

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by magnolia73 View Post
                                    Oh yeah- the clear snap out harnesses on helmets. You would have had to pry that from my cold dead hands when the bubble helmets became required.

                                    Navajo pads that complimented your full chaps. No one has full chaps these days. Well, I do.
                                    LOL...Still have a velvet hunt cap with clear harness hanging in my tack room. I had rose colored FULL chaps with palomino colored yoke and snake (I think Rattlesnake?!?) piping and the Navajos, OOOOmigosh, don't get me started, still have a stack of 'em! I also have green pinstripe Pytchley jacket which I'm positive will come back in style but I will probably never, ever be able to get buttoned!

                                    AND BTW, I loved wearing rust breeches, braiding my own horse, riding TB's, CB jackets, mud knots, egg crate foam, horse vans, and my beloved PDN saddle!
                                    Last edited by kelsey97; Jul. 22, 2011, 08:03 PM.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      So True!

                                      Originally posted by Sing Mia Song View Post
                                      One caveat for those looking at the recently-posted links to Maclay rounds from MSG: not only were those hot TBs, but they came off the trailer in the middle of NYC and pretty much straight into the ring. There was one schooling round early in the day. The schooling ring was three canter strides long and there were support posts in it. There was barely room to canter a jump and NO longing. So what you are seeing in those videos is a nervous rider on a hot horse with a brand new clip job who suddenly landed in the middle of NYC in November and thinks he's been abducted by aliens.
                                      Back in the day we had no "tricks": No Perfect Prep, Magnesium sulfate, etc. We rode fresh horses because we didn't have a choice. The first year I went to Washington the "schooling area" was a strip of dirt, ie runway, on the pavement in the parking lot. Then you rode, well I had to get off and lead mine, down the ramp into the cave...

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        I still have my navy Ptchley too! And my Dehners. Neither of which have a prayer of fitting.

                                        When I first started riding, I had one of those helments with the elastic and the plastic chin cup, that you just flipped up over the bill of the helmet anyway. I still miss my beautiful Regal Crowne

                                        There was no perfect prep, but there was plenty of resurpine, well, early 80s anyway. People still cheated back then, unfortunately.

                                        Comment

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