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Trainers coaching and NOT coaching from the sidelines

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  • Trainers coaching and NOT coaching from the sidelines

    Not tying to start a war over whether or not it's right, just wondering-
    1) Riders- does it really help you?
    2) Why are kids going into to the ring and needing help navigating to Jump 1? (In addition to all jumps afterwards...) And trainers just LET them? Why aren't they going over them beforehand?

    1)I said this on the 'Jumper Riders' thread, but if a trainer starts 'coaching' during my (jumper) round, I completley lose focus and end up messing up (which is why I LOVE my current trainer, we chat AFTER).
    Hunters I'm a little better, as in when I'm down around the ingate, if I get a ' keep going' or 'more left leg' I'm ok (guess I have more 'thinking time').

    2)Noticed this last weekend- and it wasn't just one kid! A whole slew of them in the itty-bitty jumpers were going off course at jumps 1 or 2 or if they were lucky, jump 3!
    Not a parent, but if I was paying good money to horse show and Betty Sue wasn't making it even a 1/4 around ANY of her courses, I would be pissed. Not a horse refusing issue, just a plain old, 'don't know where I'm going, I guess I'll jump this jump over here' issue... What gives?


    Maybe this is the norm at smaller shows, I should let you know that I haven' shown in close to 2 years and never on this level in this part of the country- maybe this is more common than I think? I just couldn't personally ever walk into a ring not knowing where I'm going!

  • #2
    Originally posted by roamingnome View Post
    Not tying to start a war over whether or not it's right, just wondering-
    1) Riders- does it really help you?
    2) Why are kids going into to the ring and needing help navigating to Jump 1? (In addition to all jumps afterwards...) And trainers just LET them? Why aren't they going over them beforehand?

    1)I said this on the 'Jumper Riders' thread, but if a trainer starts 'coaching' during my (jumper) round, I completley lose focus and end up messing up (which is why I LOVE my current trainer, we chat AFTER).
    Hunters I'm a little better, as in when I'm down around the ingate, if I get a ' keep going' or 'more left leg' I'm ok (guess I have more 'thinking time').

    2)Noticed this last weekend- and it wasn't just one kid! A whole slew of them in the itty-bitty jumpers were going off course at jumps 1 or 2 or if they were lucky, jump 3!
    Not a parent, but if I was paying good money to horse show and Betty Sue wasn't making it even a 1/4 around ANY of her courses, I would be pissed. Not a horse refusing issue, just a plain old, 'don't know where I'm going, I guess I'll jump this jump over here' issue... What gives?


    Maybe this is the norm at smaller shows, I should let you know that I haven' shown in close to 2 years and never on this level in this part of the country- maybe this is more common than I think? I just couldn't personally ever walk into a ring not knowing where I'm going!
    There are plenty of riders who have show nerves which cause them to "blank" on the course when they enter the ring - it's a moment of panic and having the trainer quietly remind them about where to go (or to put a bit of leg on, or look up, or whatever) can allow them to "unfreeze" and get started. It has nothing to do with not learning the course beforehand and personally, I don't think that's a big deal at all.
    **********
    We move pretty fast for some rabid garden snails.
    -PaulaEdwina

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    • #3
      I would love to hear a judge's input on this, particularly for equitation classes. Solme coaches aren't very discreet! Does knowing the rider is getting assistance from the sidelines affect your scoring? There was a trainer at a show last year that was always standing in the rail, talking to her girls as they rode by, and most of the crowd could hear what she was saying.

      For the jumper classes, I see no harm. For hunters and equitation, if students are getting help, I don't think it is very sportsman-like. I only help out a student from the rail if they are really in trouble, like, they are clearly going to the wrong jump, or their horse has had a refusal and I just want them to end on a positive note. Other than that, they should be learning how to handle themselves and the course on their own; lessons are for the coaching, classes are to test what they know, without outside help.

      My trainer was a side-line coacher. It felt a little degrading, to be honest, and when I did well, I didn't feel like I could take much credit because I wasn't on my own in there. I want my students to own their ride, good or bad.

      I-pads are great for this, too! As someone records, I can give critiques and pointers as they go, for them to watch later.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Lucassb View Post
        There are plenty of riders who have show nerves which cause them to "blank" on the course when they enter the ring - it's a moment of panic and having the trainer quietly remind them about where to go (or to put a bit of leg on, or look up, or whatever) can allow them to "unfreeze" and get started. It has nothing to do with not learning the course beforehand and personally, I don't think that's a big deal at all.
        This!

        I am one of those riders who can tell you every detail of how I am supposed to ride the course before I go in the gate. I get in the gate and panic makes my brain some how turn off. A simple reminder to breath or look up usually does the trick to bring me back to less than a total panic. Sometimes that reminder comes in the way of 'outside line' if I am clearly still in my panic zone.

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        • #5
          I saw this too at a schooling show this weekend. Lots of kids and pony-riders getting substantial coaching from the in-gate. It was basically like a lesson for some of these kids in my opinion.

          I never had a trainer give me much more than maybe a "more leg" or "chin up" from the sidelines when showing as a junior (at the 4-H and then schooling level). I consider lessons to be the "practice" for shows.

          Do people think that coaching during warm-up rounds to be more appropriate?

          Comment


          • #6
            When I showed, so long ago it seems, I always had issues with pace. We usually were confined to small rings at home, then I'd get in the big outside show ring, wind blowing, etc., and think I was just flying along...and add a stride in every line on my enormous strided horse because I was loping like a western pleasure pony. So trainer was always there in the corner to tell me if pace was ok or if I needed to pick it up. That was about the extent of the ringside coaching I got. If I didn't know where I was going, that was my own darn fault.

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            • Original Poster

              #7
              Originally posted by Lucassb View Post
              There are plenty of riders who have show nerves which cause them to "blank" on the course when they enter the ring - it's a moment of panic and having the trainer quietly remind them about where to go (or to put a bit of leg on, or look up, or whatever) can allow them to "unfreeze" and get started. It has nothing to do with not learning the course beforehand and personally, I don't think that's a big deal at all.
              I totally agree with you, a few poiners can be helpful. I guess I should have been more clear- these trainers were flat out "Ok, circle, then head to the brick in 6" then would SHOUT to them at the other end of the ring where to go next "outside in 5" etc etc in addition to "hands, whoa, leg on" etc
              Show nerves is one thing, but this seemed more like riding for them!

              Comment


              • #8
                I had my trainer tell me where I was going one time. I got jumped loose on a fence, lost my train of thought and forgot my next fence. I was already going to have time faults, but wanted to finish so she called out my next fence for me. Other than that, she might have a quiet reminder (more leg, eyes up, etc.) as I go past the gate, but that's it. When you're on course, YOU are on course!
                A proud friend of bar.ka.

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                • #9
                  It's been a while since I was in the hunter or jumper ring but if i recall the shows I went to you were NOT allowed to coach anyone in the ring from the sidelines. This was a rule at that time and of you were coaching away then rider could be scratched or pulled. They didn't usually mind if it was a little more leg comment etc. Just a one comment and that was it but you could not be telling the people riding exactly were to go or hoe to do it every stride. Jumpers I don't think it really matter to much from what I remembered but the hunter and eq ring it did. Maybe they should put this rule back into play.
                  Horses aren't our whole life, but makes our life whole

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                  • #10
                    The most my trainer ever said to me while I was in the ring was in one hunter U/S as I passed by at a canter, and she barked at me to "Get OFF his back or ELSE!"

                    So I did. And that was that.

                    Apparently I had been sitting and driving with my seat and she'd had ENOUGH of my shenanigans!
                    Adversity is the stone on which I sharpen my blade.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      With the technology these days I am surprised that trainers don't have ear buds in their students ears.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Ok, as a trainer, there a couple sides to this! Let me start by saying that I find it extremely obnoxious when trainers scream from the sidelines the entire trip...i mean, really, if you can't figure it out and your riding jumpers, maybe go back a few steps. On the other hand, you can't help bu shout out a few "LOOK" and "TURN!!!" once in a while!. Now, if you've got a short stirrup or novice adult, sometimes youhave to remind them as they go by to jump the orange flowers, or whatever! If you're training your big eq riders from the sidelines, you need to step back a little and let them think for themselves some. FYI, i have had a few judges tell me that they HATE when trainers overdo from the sidelines! If anyone has ever read Randy Roy's books, you'll know what I'm talking about. They're very funny and good reads, btw.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          There's a trainer around here who SCREAMS things at her riders while they are on course! Drives everyone within earshot crazy, it's THAT loud and obnoxious. One day, I hope she gets called on "outside assistance".....sigh..........
                          Go Ahead: This is a dare, not permission. Don't Do It!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by bM View Post
                            With the technology these days I am surprised that trainers don't have ear buds in their students ears.
                            It's in the USEF rules (EQ109.3)
                            "I'm not crazy...my mother had me tested"

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              My trainer definitely coaches me from the sidelines ... but only in o/f classes and definitely does not tell me what fence to go to. She says things like "more leg, faster, breathe, etc.". I think in schooling shows where I am still learning and figuring things out, it's helpful. However, as I move up and in the u/s classes, this kind of sideline coaching is less helpful and appropriate. Just my two cents.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                As a judge, I really dislike it when the trainer is screaming from the sidelines. In the jumpers, eh, not really that bothersome, but in a judged "test" it bothers me a whole bunch. I can say since I started judging about 15 years ago, I have become much quieter at the ingate, because yes, we can hear everything you say!
                                "You can't really debate with someone who has a prescient invisible friend"
                                carolprudm

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by bM View Post
                                  With the technology these days I am surprised that trainers don't have ear buds in their students ears.
                                  I have seen this at the larger open shows and State 4H competitions in my area (not at over fences shows, just general pleasure/equitation classes). One trainer even has an elaborate system of hand signals - although I think I would be too busy paying attention to my horse to notice. It is generally frowned upon, and has gotten much better in recent years. There are some quiet coachers on the rail, talking in a normal voice as their student passes. I think this is OK, especially with some nervous people. There is only time for a quick reminder to look up, change diagonals, slow down, more leg, etc. I don't think things like that could radically alter the placing of a class. Now, coaching the entire ride (and especially shouting out instructions) is hugely annoying and distracting to other people and horses. I have seen horses spook when someone shouts loudly from the rail right next to them, and that must really stink.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by Giddy-up View Post
                                    It's in the USEF rules (EQ109.3)
                                    Doping is also illegal but some people do it.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Originally posted by sterling2000 View Post
                                      There is only time for a quick reminder to look up, change diagonals, slow down, more leg, etc. I don't think things like that could radically alter the placing of a class.
                                      Being on the wrong diagonal WILL radically alter the placing in an equitation class.

                                      I can assure you that most judges notice which kids know their diagonals without the outside assistance.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        We do get some coaching at schooling shows (slow down, more leg, etc.) but at A shows it is limited to a quiet word when we go by the in gate. It is fairly common to hear coaching at the schooling shows around here in the lower level classes. But, not calling out strides or things like that!

                                        As someone who has ridden for years but is new to hunterland, it does help me. I think once I am a bit more comfortable in the ring, I will be fine without it.

                                        The one that annoyed me as a spectator was a local trainer that coached NON-STOP in a flat class. She even stepped into the arena at the in gate (just a step or 2 and the judge would not have noticed) so she could talk to her rider the entire time the rider walked on that short side of the arena. Seemed VERY excessive for a flat class!

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