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Continuation/Spinoff of "jumping position" thread

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  • Continuation/Spinoff of "jumping position" thread

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by RugBug
    LF, I've been thinking about this statement and then after watching a Geoff Teall video and him purposefully using the aforementioned style and briefly discussing the why's of using it. He says that he uses a long release early and often to teach the horse to maintain a rhythm and to finish its jump. In the video, he literally puts his hands forward a number of strides out and stays there for a number of strides after the fence. He also stays off the horse's back...and does so beautifully. His arse does not touch the saddle until well after the jump. I found it amusing that he often grabbed mane.

    I think it's important to distinguish the horse raising its head as a balancing mechanism or raising its head because it's being restricted in the mouth or being hit in the back. The horse in this video had complete freedom to jump how it wanted to and there was no need for excess head raising on landing It came up, as physics (nature) requires, but it wasn't excessive or distracting...and it wasn't wearing a martingale. Many times you see a horse's head come up because it simply doesn't have the freedom to keep it down or it's being sat on too early and is uncomfortable.

    We all know that the great horse's are born and then made. The truly great ones in any discipline are great because of natural talent that was shaped. Maybe the truly great hunters are ones that are very balanced and don't need excessive head raising on landing to balance themselves. The good hunters might need some training and coaxing to keep a lower head on landing and the average ones need the artificial reminder of a martingale*. Just another idea because after watching this video, there was little merit to a theory that hunters are making a horse land against the laws of nature.


    *BTW...I think many, many good hunters wear martingales that dont even need them and never come close to even hitting the end of a properly adjusted one.

    __________________________________________________ ______________


    Hi RugBug,

    I would enjoy a nice civil discussion about this. I think civility has been in rather short supply on this thread.

    But first, would you please post the link to the Geoff Teal video to which you refer if it is indeed online?

    My initial response, before watching said video, is that HOW much the horse needs to raise his head upon landing is entirely dependent upon the height of the fence. This can be seen in watching individual horses freejumping fences of various heights. Respectfully, watching ONE video of Geoff jumping a horse over smallish fences does not constitute a valid argument. We would at least need to view the SAME horse ridden in the SAME manner over fences of increasing height and width to make any theoretical statements whatsoever. Even better, Geoff riding SEVERAL horses in the same manner over fences of increasing height and width.

    This COULD potentially be a very educational discussion if we all remain rational and objective. I look forward to it, and thanks RugBug for the opportunity.

  • #2
    I've been civil

    Anyway...here's my post from the other thread.

    The video is Geoff Teal (I always spell his name wrong, so apologies) riding Artistic (lovely horse that I want under my tree with a big red bow around his neck for Christmas)...and yes, they are jumping small fences (maybe 2'9" down). I don't think it's available online, or if so, as a sample at showhunterclinic.com. (Just checked 9 minutes of it is available as a sample on the site. Not sure what that 9 minutes entails.)

    I do agree that the amount a horse needs to raise his head is dependent on the size of the jump. But then again, I always hear how 3'6" isn't a large jump and it's doubtful that another 6" would make such a huge difference.

    I personally dislike a horse that significantly raises its head on the decent and landing side. It's distracting to the flowing picture. Some of that could be conditioning from watching/loving hunters, some could be that particular horses aren't using textbook form but rather the form their conformation requires them to use (short upright neck is going to come up quicker and more visibly than a long, well-tied in...for hunters...neck).
    Keith: "Now...let's do something normal fathers and daughters do."
    Veronica: "Buy me a pony?"

    Comment

    • Original Poster

      #3
      I know you've been civil. Just hoping to keep it that way on this thread.

      I've seen the sample video, but I'm going over to watch it again with your argument (maybe we should call it perspective, it sounds friendlier!) in mind...

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by RugBug View Post
        Artistic (lovely horse that I want under my tree with a big red bow around his neck for Christmas)
        Off topic, but I just have to say- Artie is a good horse!

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by MHM View Post
          Off topic, but I just have to say- Artie is a good horse!
          Mr. Teal keeps saying that over and over in the video...and seems disappointed in the end when he says he won't ride him again for quite some time.
          Keith: "Now...let's do something normal fathers and daughters do."
          Veronica: "Buy me a pony?"

          Comment


          • #6
            Can someone post a link to this video I have always respected Geoff as a trainer but I dont really ever remember seeing him ride. He has always turned out nice animals and I would like ot hear (and see ) what he has to say.

            TIA!
            Save a life...be an organ donor! Visit www.Transplantbuddies.org

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            • #7
              I wish I had known of the existence of that video. Geoff probably explains it much better than I did in the other thread, or ever could.
              I've also ridden Artistic, and he is a really nice horse. He's also a horse that the style of ride makes a big difference on, because he doesn't naturally automatically make great use of his head and neck. Consistently giving him freedom to do so encourages him to keep his jump at its best, whereas if he were restricted regularly he would revert to a stiffer, less competitive style.

              Comment


              • #8
                Do you have to sign up to watch the videos? Because it says that I need to, but I'm not going to pay...
                Originally posted by MistyPony
                In all my years of riding, gravity is the one thing that has never failed on me!

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by CBoylen View Post
                  I wish I had known of the existence of that video. Geoff probably explains it much better than I did in the other thread, or ever could.
                  I think you explained it very well...but having a visual helps drive it home. Mr. Teal doesn't go into detail, but if you know what you're listening to, it's what he is explaining and demonstrating. And it's lovely. He starts by saying he's going to use a long release because Artistic's rider has a tendency to hold a little more off the ground. He also says that he thinks a following hand can deteriorate the horse's use of its legs.

                  Originally posted by CBoylen View Post
                  I've also ridden Artistic, and he is a really nice horse.
                  So jealous.

                  That's two horses from that series I want so far. Artistic and So You Say. I'm compiling a big wish list, I suppose.

                  For anyone wanting to see the video, it's at showhunterclinic.com and is one of the three sample videos available to watch for free. It's not the whole video,but may be the whole jumping portion (GT does a lot of poles rather than a lot of jumps (which completely inspired me) and then jumps a bit.
                  Keith: "Now...let's do something normal fathers and daughters do."
                  Veronica: "Buy me a pony?"

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by CBoylen View Post
                    Consistently giving him freedom to do so encourages him to keep his jump at its best, whereas if he were restricted regularly he would revert to a stiffer, less competitive style.
                    I do not think there is any disagreement with the fact that any restriction with the hand encourages stiffness. Active restriction is unequivocally negative (of course except in certain safety situations) whether it is in the form of a hand that takes on takeoff or grabs in the air.

                    I do not, however, agree that the crest release is the only release that is non-restrictive.

                    A properly executed release of any style - go-go gadget crest, moderate crest, modified crest, following - is never restrictive in nature.

                    The action of the following hand is inherent to its name: to follow any gesture of the horse's head and neck. There is nothing restrictive about following, similar to how a hand that is placed on a horse's flanks as it dances to the side does not mean it is applying force. It may simply be softly resting there, as a proper following hand softly follows.

                    A following hand *properly executed* simply follows the horse's reach forward and is not restrictive in any way, shape or form.

                    I liken this to work on the flat. One can only get a horse to "round up" a very minimal amount by riding with passive or thrown-away contact. True contact is not actively restrictive and invites an elastic connection, showing the horse how to search and reach forward for it. One cannot have a round horse without contact because it is a vital link in the translation and recycling of energy.

                    I don't think this is any different o/f. A horse that is taught to be comfortable with contact and to reach forward in it (as all horses should) will not perceive restriction by a following hand. I find a lot of horses settle better and nervous horses are comforted when they are not "freed" to the extent that a go-go-gadget crest release is used.


                    Additionally, as the contact is the missing link, so to speak, in the bridge of energy, the contact can accentuate or actually develop a bascule.

                    Developing bascule with the following hand is a skilled technique; the basic following hand is no more complicated than a crest release, providing that the rider actually has correct enough position to be riding the fences that they are.

                    I would never try to suggest to you that the following hand should be used in the hunters, because we would likely never agree , but I do not agree at all that a proper following hand is restrictive.

                    A proper following hand is not restrictive, and a proper crest release does not leave the horse feeling unduly abandoned. Both are common misconceptions.
                    It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. (Aristotle)

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I guess to relate that to the original topic of landing, proper rider landing technique as described in countless textbooks does not inhibit the horse's freedom of landing.

                      I see the GT or modern hunter way as a simplified version of jumping...it takes much more skill to use a following hand or stay in a balanced, correct position than is currently popular. Most clients want the quick and easy, not the more thorough version of what they are taught that takes much longer to learn and employ....so I can see why all of this has come about.

                      But the "old, traditional" way is no less correct because it's old and traditional, and it's no less correct simply because we don't see it used anymore.
                      It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. (Aristotle)

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Mac123 View Post
                        The action of the following hand is inherent to its name: to follow any gesture of the horse's head and neck. There is nothing restrictive about following, similar to how a hand that is placed on a horse's flanks as it dances to the side does not mean it is applying force. It may simply be softly resting there, as a proper following hand softly follows.

                        A following hand *properly executed* simply follows the horse's reach forward and is not restrictive in any way, shape or form.

                        I liken this to work on the flat. One can only get a horse to "round up" a very minimal amount by riding with passive or thrown-away contact. True contact is not actively restrictive and invites an elastic connection, showing the horse how to search and reach forward for it. One cannot have a round horse without contact because it is a vital link in the translation and recycling of energy.

                        I don't think this is any different o/f. A horse that is taught to be comfortable with contact and to reach forward in it (as all horses should) will not perceive restriction by a following hand. I find a lot of horses settle better and nervous horses are comforted when they are not "freed" to the extent that a go-go-gadget crest release is used.
                        The whole point of the following hand over fences is to keep constant contact without interfering with the horse's motion. Your theory implies that horses are capable of understanding that their riders will "follow" them no matter where they go with their heads and necks, without interfering at all. I'm not so sure that a horse can think that way. I would think that a horse is more likely to feel that contact, no matter how slight, and think, "this is as far as I can go". The crest release, by its very nature, says to the horse, "go as far as you can; I'm not going to get in your way". And in the hunters, there's no need for constant contact (some parts of a handy class excluded). The horse is supposed to do (or appear to do) the job on his own. The crest release allows him to know that he can do that. I just don't understand this obsession with the lack of auto release in the hunter division. It's really not relevant or even desirable considering the goals of that division. If it was, we would see it all the time.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by RugBug View Post
                          The video is Geoff Teal (I always spell his name wrong, so apologies)
                          You were right the first time...Teall.
                          *****
                          You will not rise to the occasion, you will default to your level of training.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by ynl063w View Post
                            The whole point of the following hand over fences is to keep constant contact without interfering with the horse's motion. Your theory implies that horses are capable of understanding that their riders will "follow" them no matter where they go with their heads and necks, without interfering at all. I'm not so sure that a horse can think that way. I would think that a horse is more likely to feel that contact, no matter how slight, and think, "this is as far as I can go". The crest release, by its very nature, says to the horse, "go as far as you can; I'm not going to get in your way". And in the hunters, there's no need for constant contact (some parts of a handy class excluded). The horse is supposed to do (or appear to do) the job on his own. The crest release allows him to know that he can do that. I just don't understand this obsession with the lack of auto release in the hunter division. It's really not relevant or even desirable considering the goals of that division. If it was, we would see it all the time.
                            If a horse is trained to stretch into the hand, this is not a problem. My horses know that when I flatten my hand and lighten my seatbones they are invited to take the contact as far down as they wish, and most oblige by dragging their nose on the floor. If that's not a bascule, I don't know what is.

                            In the preceding strides to the fence, I simply flatten the hand slightly and soften the feel through the fingers, and *wapow* we have a bascule accomplished without dropping the contact.

                            The jump is simply an extension of the flatwork, and the quality of the former shows in the latter.

                            You will note I ended my post with saying that I recognize the following hand will never be widely used in the hunters, but simply wanted to disband the proposition that the following hand is restrictive. I also said that I use the crest release too at times. Usually when a horse surprises me with an enthusiastic jump and I need the support.

                            ETA: I dug around to find a photo to show this...not the best quality or angle and taken a shade late, but this horse certainly does not look restricted, and that certainly isn't a crest release. A side view would show a lovely bascule, and a couple frames earlier and those knees would be up there as he's unfolding in this frame over this lowish jump.
                            http://myhorsephotos.shutterfly.com/34

                            Also...it's hard to picture me on the neck and with a crest release in that picture. When the horse jumps correctly, he puts the rider in the proper position...that's why it's considered correct. As in the popular "Let the horse jump to you, and you follow" mantra.

                            We will likely never agree, though, because our entire ideas and frameworks seem to be completely different. I have a feeling that what you see as an ideal jump is not mine, and thus, we should probably agree to disagree.
                            It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. (Aristotle)

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              How refreshing and interesting to read many different opinions in such a mature forum. THANK YOU ALL!

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by Midge View Post
                                You were right the first time...Teall.
                                Ugh...I thought I was two lls but then I checked the website with the video and the sample is tagged as "Teal" so I figured that must be right...but then if you scroll down further, as I just did, it's Teall. Heh.

                                Mac123: I think a properly down following hand isn't restrictive, but I think most people don't have the balance to do it properly and do end up interfering with their horse's jump.

                                Following over the fence isn't the hard part. Heck, I can do that. It's the following on the landing side that's hard...and what become restrictive. If you can't open your angles without falling back, you teach the horse to lift its head early. You are going to create some amount of pull on its mouth and you are going to put some amount of weight on its back encouraging a raised head...not due to nature, but due to rider error.

                                I just spent some time watching a number of videos of hunters and jumpers and some eq rounds and it's interesting to see the difference. The hunters that are given freedom generally tend to continue the jump all the way through landing, take a stride or two and THEN prepare for the next jump. Their heads and neck stay down and stretched...even the hunter derby horses. The jumpers, who are being prepped in the air for the next jump bring their head up much sooner. They aren't getting the chance to finish the orevious jump...they are already prepping for the next.
                                Keith: "Now...let's do something normal fathers and daughters do."
                                Veronica: "Buy me a pony?"

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by Mac123 View Post
                                  If a horse is trained to stretch into the hand, this is not a problem. My horses know that when I flatten my hand and lighten my seatbones they are invited to take the contact as far down as they wish, and most oblige by dragging their nose on the floor. If that's not a bascule, I don't know what is.

                                  In the preceding strides to the fence, I simply flatten the hand slightly and soften the feel through the fingers, and *wapow* we have a bascule accomplished without dropping the contact.

                                  The jump is simply an extension of the flatwork, and the quality of the former shows in the latter.

                                  You will note I ended my post with saying that I recognize the following hand will never be widely used in the hunters, but simply wanted to disband the proposition that the following hand is restrictive. I also said that I use the crest release too at times. Usually when a horse surprises me with an enthusiastic jump and I need the support.

                                  ETA: I dug around to find a photo to show this...not the best quality or angle and taken a shade late, but this horse certainly does not look restricted, and that certainly isn't a crest release. A side view would show a lovely bascule, and a couple frames earlier and those knees would be up there as he's unfolding in this frame over this lowish jump.
                                  http://myhorsephotos.shutterfly.com/34

                                  Also...it's hard to picture me on the neck and with a crest release in that picture. When the horse jumps correctly, he puts the rider in the proper position...that's why it's considered correct. As in the popular "Let the horse jump to you, and you follow" mantra.

                                  We will likely never agree, though, because our entire ideas and frameworks seem to be completely different. I have a feeling that what you see as an ideal jump is not mine, and thus, we should probably agree to disagree.
                                  Hmm. Practically straight line from bit to shoulder. What's that called?

                                  Sorry, but that looks really awkward. Even more so than the exaggerated crest release so prevalent today. Your horse looks really happy though; I'll give you that.

                                  Comment

                                  • Original Poster

                                    #18
                                    Originally posted by ynl063w View Post
                                    The whole point of the following hand over fences is to keep constant contact without interfering with the horse's motion. Your theory implies that horses are capable of understanding that their riders will "follow" them no matter where they go with their heads and necks, without interfering at all. I'm not so sure that a horse can think that way. I would think that a horse is more likely to feel that contact, no matter how slight, and think, "this is as far as I can go". The crest release, by its very nature, says to the horse, "go as far as you can; I'm not going to get in your way". And in the hunters, there's no need for constant contact (some parts of a handy class excluded). The horse is supposed to do (or appear to do) the job on his own. The crest release allows him to know that he can do that. I just don't understand this obsession with the lack of auto release in the hunter division. It's really not relevant or even desirable considering the goals of that division. If it was, we would see it all the time.
                                    This MIGHT be a valid argument were it not for the fact that in almost EVERY. SINGLE. PHOTO out there you see of riders using a following hand (which admittedly are FAR too few), their horses are jumping much rounder than are those whose riders are using the crest release. Its the nature of the following hand: you can't perform one if your horse is not using its head and neck in the extreme forward/downward manner of a proper bascule. There's a limit to how much bascule one can ride with a crest release without completely destabilizing the upper body.

                                    Comment

                                    • Original Poster

                                      #19
                                      Originally posted by ynl063w View Post
                                      Hmm. Practically straight line from bit to shoulder. What's that called?

                                      Sorry, but that looks really awkward. Even more so than the exaggerated crest release so prevalent today. Your horse looks really happy though; I'll give you that.

                                      "Practically straight line from bit to shoulder?" I think that's a bit of a stretch. There's still plenty of angle left through her elbow...the 1/4 view the photo is taken from is misleading and makes the angle look less than it is.

                                      Awkward? No. You just don't see it anymore. Go look at photos of Kathy Kusner. She and Mac123 are cut from the same cloth.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by LudgerFan View Post
                                        This MIGHT be a valid argument were it not for the fact that in almost EVERY. SINGLE. PHOTO out there you see of riders using a following hand (which admittedly are FAR too few), their horses are jumping much rounder than are those whose riders are using the crest release. Its the nature of the following hand: you can't perform one if your horse is not using its head and neck in the extreme forward/downward manner of a proper bascule. There's a limit to how much bascule one can ride with a crest release without completely destabilizing the upper body.
                                        Just as you can't lay all blame on the crest release, you can't give all praise to the auto. Aren't the majority of people using the auto more advanced and on bigger jumping (more talented) horses? By the varying nature of who is using the auto and on what horses, you are going to see a rounder base jump because the size of the fence begins limiting the flatter (weaker) jumping horses (except for the freakish flat ones that still jump five miles high). It's a complex relationship and can't be simplified to one cause and one effect.
                                        Keith: "Now...let's do something normal fathers and daughters do."
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