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Causes for rotational falls over fences?

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  • Original Poster

    #21
    Originally posted by ride the pony View Post
    A quick thought

    A "Rotational Fall" means the horse "rotates" over the jump in a full heels over ears (a*** over teakettle) summersault. So to flip the horse has to meet an inmovable barrier.

    The crash on this thread while equally frightening is a "crash and fall" but not "rotational fall" or Flipping because horse does not ROTATE in the air

    Neither technique is desired.
    Its probably a lot safer to have a crash and fall rather than an eventing type of rotational fall......

    Comment


    • #22
      Originally posted by ride the pony View Post
      A quick thought

      A "Rotational Fall" means the horse "rotates" over the jump in a full heels over ears (a*** over teakettle) summersault. So to flip the horse has to meet an inmovable barrier.

      The crash on this thread while equally frightening is a "crash and fall" but not "rotational fall" or Flipping because horse does not ROTATE in the air

      Neither technique is desired.
      Horses can rotate over a movable object. My mare indeed "flipped" over an oxer....she took off, got tangled in the poles and rolled right over her nose landing on her back/butt. So yes, what people are talking about here ARE true rotational falls.

      I think "crashes" are more common in the h/j ring, but I've been involved in and seen a fair number of true rotational falls in the jumper ring and schooling at home over the years.

      Maybe it would help to think about the fact that a h/j fence is only movable if the horse hits it on a slightly upward trajectory. If it's met horizontally or at an awkward angle, it can take *just* long enough to fall that it functions as a solid obstacle for just long enough to cause a flip.
      __________________________________
      Flying F Sport Horses
      Horses in the NW

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      • Original Poster

        #23
        Originally posted by PNWjumper View Post
        Horses can rotate over a movable object. My mare indeed "flipped" over an oxer....she took off, got tangled in the poles and rolled right over her nose landing on her back/butt. So yes, what people are talking about here ARE true rotational falls.

        I think "crashes" are more common in the h/j ring, but I've been involved in and seen a fair number of true rotational falls in the jumper ring and schooling at home over the years.

        Maybe it would help to think about the fact that a h/j fence is only movable if the horse hits it on a slightly upward trajectory. If it's met horizontally or at an awkward angle, it can take *just* long enough to fall that it functions as a solid obstacle for just long enough to cause a flip.
        Again, I think its important that alot of people have noted the frequency of rotational falls in the jumper ring. There are way too many people just running to jumps..they don't focus on seeing a distance or riding efficiently. Also, when rotational falls happen in the h/j ring, they are rarely fatal. However, the two that I know of, Meggan Morrency and Allie Stevens, were fatal. They also took place in the jumpers

        Comment


        • #24
          Perhaps you are having technical difficulties and the rest of my post isn't visible to you. "I guess in show jumping, the "fixed object" would be a rail. When a rail gets caught up between the horse's legs?"

          This seems like a very, very strange fight to pick.

          Originally posted by PINE TREE FARM SC View Post
          You said I guess in show jumping, the "fixed object" would be a rail.

          I guess that's not what you meant to say?

          Comment


          • #25
            There really does seem to be a lot of confusion about what a rotational fall is. It is not just a crash where the horse falls (be that on it's nose, back or side).

            Originally posted by goodlife View Post
            While this isn't a completely rotational fall, it's a pretty close example of one in show jumping. As you can see in the video, I didn't get the horse to a hail Mary distance or anything - the horse just failed to get her left leg up and ended up clipping both the gate and the pole with her knee/higher than her knee.
            ...
            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-hKYkATzy6Q
            Originally posted by ElisLove View Post
            I nearly had a rotational fall on my boy once. Mine was caused by bad distance. We got there long and I did not support it, my horse thought about putting another in, then decided against it. Because he was already putting his front legs down before deciding against it he could not get his front end up again. He hit the front of the oxer above the knee, but thankfully closer to chest level. I sat up and completely let go of the reins to allow him to use his head and neck as much as possible to save us. Cross country fence, we would have flipped.
            Not a great video of it since it's far away and partially blocked by jumps but a good slow mo of what happened.
            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zexH2...6A6CQ&index=35
            Neither of those are 'nearly rotational falls'. In both cases the horse lands on its feet. Even if they'd stumbled and fallen on landing, the were travelling forward with the body facing forwards. A rotational fall is where the horse's front legs are caught up, so its body rotates in the air - the nose goes from pointing forwards, to straight down, to back towards the jump. Like the video Mouse&Bay posted.

            Both of the the horses in the videos above are able to get their front legs free (yay for knockable rails!) and even land on them, with no rotation of the body.

            Originally posted by Mouse&Bay View Post
            A true rotational fall is less likely n stadium jumping as there is no fixed obstacle for the horse to pivot over. Unfortunately a much greater risk in eventing where cross country fences are solid.

            This series of photographs shows how easily it can happen:
            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HCanJ...e_gdata_player
            Seconded.

            Originally posted by ride the pony View Post
            Neither technique is desired.
            Yes, only the foolish would be keen to join the 'I had a rotational fall!' club!

            Originally posted by gumshoe View Post
            Perhaps you are having technical difficulties and the rest of my post isn't visible to you. "I guess in show jumping, the "fixed object" would be a rail. When a rail gets caught up between the horse's legs?"

            This seems like a very, very strange fight to pick.
            I understood what you were saying perfectly. Not sure where the confusion is coming from.

            Comment


            • #26
              Ummmm, I am not confused. In my examples, the AO Hunter slid in the mud into the base then tried to lift its forehand over the oxer chesting it and flipping into a somersault sideways into the standard rolling onto its back- and rider who had been flipped out of the saddle ahead and underneath the trajectory of the somersaulting and falling sideways horse. Rider walked away, horse had a career ending shoulder injury and a nasty hanging skin flap superficial nasty.

              The klutzy youngster who tripped over a crossrail did a complete somersault landing on rider and sending her to ER with broken collarbone and cracked ribs. Horse was off a year with a suspensory and to this day will not approach anything resembling a jump pole and is enjoying a career in Dressage.

              i know what a rotational fall is and what usually causes them Also know sometimes they are accidents without a smoking gun to pin blame on. Sh*t happens.
              When opportunity knocks it's wearing overalls and looks like work.

              The horse world. Two people. Three opinions.

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              • #27
                I've seen a brilliant jumper flip over and land on their rider because they chipped a 1.40 oxer. The jump didn't even fall down (I don't think the horse even touched the jump).

                I don't think jumping style has anything to do with it.

                Comment

                • Original Poster

                  #28
                  Originally posted by bM View Post
                  I've seen a brilliant jumper flip over and land on their rider because they chipped a 1.40 oxer. The jump didn't even fall down (I don't think the horse even touched the jump).

                  I don't think jumping style has anything to do with it.

                  How did they hit the jump and rotate all the way over if it didnt even hit the jump...so you think distance has more to do with it? was the rider ok?

                  Comment


                  • #29
                    Originally posted by kalidascope View Post
                    There really does seem to be a lot of confusion about what a rotational fall is. It is not just a crash where the horse falls (be that on it's nose, back or side).





                    Neither of those are 'nearly rotational falls'. In both cases the horse lands on its feet. Even if they'd stumbled and fallen on landing, the were travelling forward with the body facing forwards. A rotational fall is where the horse's front legs are caught up, so its body rotates in the air - the nose goes from pointing forwards, to straight down, to back towards the jump. Like the video Mouse&Bay posted.

                    Both of the the horses in the videos above are able to get their front legs free (yay for knockable rails!) and even land on them, with no rotation of the body.


                    Seconded.


                    Yes, only the foolish would be keen to join the 'I had a rotational fall!' club!


                    I understood what you were saying perfectly. Not sure where the confusion is coming from.
                    I did note in my post that my crash was not a rotational fall. What I was trying to convey is that the way in which my horse jumped that fence (where she made contact with the pole and gate at or above the knee) is similar to the jumping error that causes rotational falls when jumping fixed objects. I'm lucky the jump fell down.

                    Comment


                    • #30
                      Originally posted by Caligirl123 View Post
                      How did they hit the jump and rotate all the way over if it didnt even hit the jump...so you think distance has more to do with it? was the rider ok?
                      A horse that pushes hard from behind can unbalance themselves, especially if they are slw with their front end mechanics.
                      Keith: "Now...let's do something normal fathers and daughters do."
                      Veronica: "Buy me a pony?"

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                      • #31
                        I agree with other posters that an actual rotational fall in stadium jumping is extremely rare (but it does happen). The video showing the series of pictures during an event is a great example of a true rotational fall over a fence. The horse went vertical and the hind end pivoted over the front (due to the immediate stop in momentum from the upper front legs hitting a non-movable object) in the air during the jumping effort.

                        What most experience in stadium is the horse flips/rotates AFTER the jumping effort. Usually the front legs get caught up in the rails so the horse lands with forward momentum but is still unable to regain balance/footing and thereby flips over because their front end significantly decreases in momentum in relation to their hind end. This is obviously still a rotational fall. As I would define a rotational fall as any time a horse pivots over it's front end and ends up falling in a way that the horse is facing the opposite direction it was traveling. However, because there is no fixed objects MOST horses in MOST situations will be able to avoid truly flipping even if they fall down while attempting to regain their footing.

                        Point being, it is possible to have a rotational fall in either discipline. I personally think it is ultimately a combination of both the distance and the horse's form. The reason a horse's jumping form is important in this aspect is that an athletic horse with good form SHOULD be able to adequately jump from a poor distance. A horse with bad form is more likely to have a fall due to a bad distance. HOWEVER, a bad distance with insufficient pace, impulsion, etc. can result in a rotational fall regardless of the horse's jumping ability. Emphasis has already been put on not running your horse to the jump by previous posters. Many beautiful athletic jumpers have rotated. If the horse is not competing above his capability, it is highly unlikely a good ride will result in a rotational fall. A horse that does not lift his shoulder, thereby more likely to hit a jump above the knee, is not likely to flip if he is jumping a height he is comfortable with and receiving a good ride. You canter a not scope horse with poor form to a 4' oxer then obviously his form is going to strongly come into play and you may have a problem!
                        There is something about the outside of a horse that is good for the
                        inside of a man.

                        -Sir Winston Churchill

                        Comment


                        • #32
                          Originally posted by Caligirl123 View Post
                          How did they hit the jump and rotate all the way over if it didnt even hit the jump...so you think distance has more to do with it? was the rider ok?
                          The rider was fine.

                          Basically the horse was chipped into a 1.40m oxer, rider did not release and the horse got over the jump in some bizarre way and flipped completely upside down.

                          I believe that even the best jumpers can jump quite unconventional at times, mostly due to the distance and ride in front of the jump.

                          When it really comes down to it, horses are animals which control their own bodies and strange, freak things can happen sometimes.. look at the strange ways cats jump when you spook them, or that video on Youtube when the jockey gets put on the horse and it jumps backwards and flips over.

                          Comment


                          • #33
                            I KNOW mine wasn't a rotational fall. I said it was not a rotational. But it WOULD have been had the jump been a crosscountry jump and had not moved when we hit it (like I said in my original post) rotional falls happen when the horse hits the jump above the knees and the jump stops the front ends forward motion and the hind end keeps going. This is what would have happened to me and my horse if the jump had not been moveable.

                            Comment


                            • #34
                              Originally posted by Caligirl123 View Post
                              I was recently having a debate with someone at show about this. They believed rotational falls happened over fences because of bad distances. I disagree. I believe they are due to a horse having bad form. I believe that maybe when a horse crashes through a jump its mostly likely because of a bad distance. What do you guys think?
                              Niether. As Janet alluded, rotational falls are the result of a specific set of kinetic incidents whereas the horse rotates around the chest. There have been several studies as the result of fatalities on XC that studied the kinetics of ALL rotational falls, not just XC. The key is that the horse fails to bring the front legs up and placing of the body in a position out of the way of the top of the fence so that the chest remains above the fence. The animal's C.G. remains low enough to rotated about the fixed point of the fence. If it was too low, the animal simply hits the fence. Too high, it clears the fence.

                              A horse can hang legs and get deep but if the hind end is positioned such that the animal can bring their front legs and hence, C.G. above the obstacle there is no issue. At the same time, the FRICTIONAL coefficients between the animal's legs and the fence also must be considered as that is how the forward momentum is transferred to a rotational motion about a fence.

                              Tim Deans and Martin Herbert at University of Bristol, in conjunction with Goodyear did their M.S. degrees on this.

                              Most rotationals in stadium are the result of the horse coming DOWN on the backside and the hind legs becoming ""stuck" on the fence, thus causing an increase in forward velocity downward, flipping the horse.

                              Comment


                              • #35
                                I totally agree that rotational falls are somewhat of a perfect storm where a distance, impulsion, rider position, balance come into play...but form is important. A horse who doesn't even bring his forearm level (points knees down) a lot of the time when he's jumping 'well' is not my first choice. You want something that's quick enough with the front end to have a sliver of hope for saving you both when things aren't perfect. If I had a rotational fall on a horse who I know points his knees to the ground at least 50% of the time under normal circumstance, I would not be looking for sympathy.

                                Comment


                                • #36
                                  Originally posted by Win1 View Post
                                  I totally agree that rotational falls are somewhat of a perfect storm where a distance, impulsion, rider position, balance come into play...but form is important. A horse who doesn't even bring his forearm level (points knees down) a lot of the time when he's jumping 'well' is not my first choice. You want something that's quick enough with the front end to have a sliver of hope for saving you both when things aren't perfect. If I had a rotational fall on a horse who I know points his knees to the ground at least 50% of the time under normal circumstance, I would not be looking for sympathy.
                                  Edited to add: When a horse is jumping in bad form, with the knees pointed downward, they are jumping over their shoulder ALREADY. The center of gravity is too low and they are leaving it behind as they clear the fence. IMO, you're halfway to a rotational fall on a good jump, all you need is a little nudge and you're done.

                                  Comment


                                  • #37
                                    Originally posted by goodlife View Post
                                    While this isn't a completely rotational fall, it's a pretty close example of one in show jumping. As you can see in the video, I didn't get the horse to a hail Mary distance or anything - the horse just failed to get her left leg up and ended up clipping both the gate and the pole with her knee/higher than her knee.

                                    I'm not sure why this happened exactly - we had just put the jumps up from about 3'3-3'6 to the height that the crash happened at, so she may not have realized that the height had changed and processed it quickly enough off of such a short turn, or possibly she got stuck in the footing or slipped off the ground.

                                    She's not a "dangerous jumper" (she's actually usually very correct in front) and this has never happened since (touch wood!) but is an example of how it can happen outside of the cross country field and from a decent distance. Like Janet said, it's from a combination of factors, usually. I have made this horse jump from underneath things and from 100 feet away from things. 99.9% of time, she gets her front end up and all is good. Occasionally though, a number of factors combine and you have a crash. I don't think you can attribute it to just bad jumping style or just a bad distance.

                                    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-hKYkATzy6Q

                                    PLEASE don't take this as unkind criticism. Since you posted it here where discussion of rotational falls is taking place, it seems appropriate to comment on likely causes. First, I wouldn't consider it a rotational fall. But if you watch closely, you're dropping your right hand as early as the turn and it stays low at take off. Then, your body is parallel to the horse's neck long before she can get her leading (RF) leg out of the way. Your low inside hand around the turn allowed the mare to drop her inside shoulder, making her heavy on the right front. With a shorter take off distance such as this, even if she were ideally balanced, it's best to sit tall to the base, release out of hand if possible and don't close your hip angle any more than necessary (any more than the horse automatically closes it for you). When you jump up the neck before the front legs are folded and out of the way, you make it much harder, and sometimes impossible, for the legs (especially the leading leg, since it's the second to fold) to fold clear of the top rail as your body weight adds to the load on the horse's forehand. Another problem with jumping up the neck is that the horse pushes off the ground with enough force to clear the jump with you in the middle of the tack, or comparably so, compared to laying on the neck. Adding excess weight to the front end at a jump after "calculations" have already been made can mean that there just isn't enough "oomph" to tuck up the forelimbs under an additional X number of pounds.
                                    The left front was going to clear just fine, so my guess is that she knew exactly where that top rail was, but being heavy on her right side, with her right shoulder dropped and then an "eager" release on your part added up to make her unable to get the right front clear.
                                    'So glad you were both okay!
                                    Last edited by JackieBlue; Apr. 15, 2013, 08:58 PM.
                                    "Absent a correct diagnosis, medicine is poison, surgery is trauma and alternative therapy is witchcraft" A. Kent Allen
                                    http://www.etsy.com/shop/tailsofglory

                                    Comment


                                    • #38
                                      I had a rotational fall about 10 years ago, and it was easily the most frightening thing that ever happened to me. In my case, it was due to a truly horrible distance and a horse that preferred a long spot. It happened during a lesson, over an oxer that was about 3' in the back, with a spread of maybe 2'6", so not real wide. I saw a long distance, and Pal was very willing to leave - like an entire stride early! So the arc of the jump was such that we were on the downward trajectory and he caught his legs in the back rail of the oxer. As soon as he got caught, I knew we were going down. I did the tuck-and-roll, and as I was on the ground I looked over to see my horse on his back next to me. My trainer confirmed he went a$$ over teakettle. Mercifully he rolled away from me, and neither of us was seriously hurt. All I did was separate a shoulder; Pal was unscathed.

                                      Long story short, our problem was hail-Mary distance with back rail of oxer caught between front legs with horse on downward arc of jump.
                                      Why do I like most horses better than most people?

                                      Comment

                                      • Original Poster

                                        #39
                                        Originally posted by ShaSamour View Post
                                        I had a rotational fall about 10 years ago, and it was easily the most frightening thing that ever happened to me. In my case, it was due to a truly horrible distance and a horse that preferred a long spot. It happened during a lesson, over an oxer that was about 3' in the back, with a spread of maybe 2'6", so not real wide. I saw a long distance, and Pal was very willing to leave - like an entire stride early! So the arc of the jump was such that we were on the downward trajectory and he caught his legs in the back rail of the oxer. As soon as he got caught, I knew we were going down. I did the tuck-and-roll, and as I was on the ground I looked over to see my horse on his back next to me. My trainer confirmed he went a$$ over teakettle. Mercifully he rolled away from me, and neither of us was seriously hurt. All I did was separate a shoulder; Pal was unscathed.

                                        Long story short, our problem was hail-Mary distance with back rail of oxer caught between front legs with horse on downward arc of jump.
                                        I noticed that a lot of these types of falls are on oxers, especially at the lower levels. Do you think this is due more to rider error? At high levels of jumping the cups are much flatter...which usually helps

                                        Comment


                                        • #40
                                          Originally posted by Caligirl123 View Post
                                          I noticed that a lot of these types of falls are on oxers, especially at the lower levels. Do you think this is due more to rider error? At high levels of jumping the cups are much flatter...which usually helps
                                          I think it has much less to do with cup depth and much more to do with rider skill.
                                          http://www.youtube.com/user/supershorty628
                                          Proudly blogging for The Chronicle of the Horse!

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