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Short Stirrup Equitation vs Short Stirrup Hunter

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  • Short Stirrup Equitation vs Short Stirrup Hunter

    Where the number and height of the jumps are the same, what is the difference between Short Stirrup Equitation (aka Beginner Equitation) and Short Stirrup Hunter classes? Are they judged differently? Are the order of jumps different -- a different, more difficult course, for the young riders?


  • #2
    For the hunter class, the judging is based on the horse and for equitation, the judging is based on the rider.


    • #3
      Eq courses might be more twisty than a straight hunter round.


      • #4
        Might see a bending line or a sort of rollback. Unless it's twice around the outside, in which case they might go left in one and right in the other!
        The Evil Chem Prof


        • #5
          It is very rare to see a difficult course in a low level eq class like short stirrup. It may be twice around the outside or possibly a normal outside/diagonal/outside/diagonal course similar to what you'd see in the hunters. It is a beginner division, after all! The riders will be judged on their position, hands, and control of the horse/pony.

          In the short stirrup hunters, it is the horse/pony being judged. Way of going, quality of jump, and suitability to a beginner rider are the points being scored. Good rider position helps show the animal off, but technically the rider is not being judged.
          We move pretty fast for some rabid garden snails.


          • #6
            The simple answer is that the rider is judged in the eq class and the horse is judged in the hunters -- But, I don't think any of the zones have specs for either division, so what's required in each can vary --

            Some shows near me, particularly the USEF rated ones will run SS hunters as a typical hunter division with an u/s class and 3 o/f classes -- They're more likely to have several flat classes and only 1 or 2 o/f classes for SS eq ... maybe a w/t/figure 8, w/t/canter, once around the outside, twice around the outside -- SS may also include diagonal lines, but I can't remember seeing any 'complicated' courses (although I've never really watched this division)

            There are also a number of shows that offer Mini-stirrup or Shortest stirrup, and those are for even younger kids than SS -- These divisions often offer a w/t class where the kids remain in the ring and jump a line of 2 fences from a lineup -- 4 fences around the outside and no diagonal lines would be typical for these divisions --

            It's helpful to have a prize list to know what will be expected before you get to the show -- It's even more helpful to take the young rider to watch a show running under the same specs before they begin to show in these divisions --
            "I never mind if an adult uses safety stirrups." GM


            • #7
              Originally posted by Lucassb View Post
              It is very rare to see a difficult course in a low level eq class like short stirrup. It may be twice around the outside or possibly a normal outside/diagonal/outside/diagonal course similar to what you'd see in the hunters. It is a beginner division, after all! The riders will be judged on their position, hands, and control of the horse/pony.

              In the short stirrup hunters, it is the horse/pony being judged. Way of going, quality of jump, and suitability to a beginner rider are the points being scored. Good rider position helps show the animal off, but technically the rider is not being judged.
              This is always right. No matter what sort of courses each class has, this is how they are judged.

              However, at some shows I know of, short stirrup equitation is considered the more beginner division. Kids then move up from that into short stirrup hunter. Short stirrup equitation has a w/t class, a w/t/c class, and two over fences classes (both of which are around the outside line). Short stirrup hunter has one under saddle class and 3 over fences classes, which use the diagonal jumps. They are still judged differently, just like Lucassb said- but just be aware that at some shows there is some extra difficulty in the hunters. Talk to someone who has been to the show you are considering and see if it runs this way before you commit.


              • #8
                As far as the judging goes, everyone is spot on.

                However, read your prize list for the class specs. Around my area, SS is NO.JOKE. It is a course of 7-9 2' jumps, filled in with gates, boxes, rolltops, flower boxes, brush boxes etc, with at least 2-3 oxers in the mix. The Eq usually has at least one rollback, and a broken or bent line. Flying lead changes are almost a must to pin. And this is a local H/J association rated show (as in not USEF rated). Simply put, our SS doesn't mess around!

                But we also have an entire beginner ring with crossrails and mini-hunter, and usually a green hunter division so the kids can work their way up.
                Hunters, Jumpers, & Welsh Ponies
                All I pay my psychiatrist is the cost of feed and hay, and he'll listen to me any day. ~Author Unknown


                • #9
                  Agree with joiedevi.
                  Talk to somebody who's been to the show, or even better, if there's a series of shows, go to one unmounted. This will give both you and your little rider a chance to familiarize yourselves with the format.
                  Timothy, stop lurking


                  • #10
                    I think they're pretty much the same, having watched a lot. Only difference is in eq your SS kid might want a shorter rein and to sit during some of the course, and obviously the canter in the U/S should be sitting during the eq, and 2 pt during the hunter u/s. usually the courses are about the same, but occasionally i see extra fences added for the eq kids. (like instead of having just outside diagonal outside diagonal, they might start out or end with a quarterline single)

                    Blitz <3 & Leap of Faith <3


                    • Original Poster

                      All of your replies were helpful. Thanks. I'd wondered because this is my granddaughter's first year jumping. The trainer had said she'd be moving up to short stirrup but then at the first show decided that Beg Equitation was a better choice because it was less competitive and we wanted a positive experience. That's fine; I go with that. But I'd wondered about the judging because the pony is 24 years old, the love of my GD's life, but not the welsh type the other kids in SS Hunter are riding. That's ok. We love our rides and the time and experiences they share together are priceless.

                      Also, in lessons my granddaughter tends to get the first course of 7 or 8 jumps right but when asked to do it again, she invariably gets lost. So I wondered if the courses were different for SS Hunter. Keeping it simple would give her a more positive experience.

                      There is so much to learn; we are having so much fun.