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Para-Equestrian Eventers

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  • Para-Equestrian Eventers

    Just wondering if there are any other Para-Equestrians out there competing in eventing?
    I am a grade III para-equestrian and have competed in local dressage shows (regular classes, nothing close to me offers the para-classes) and this year my horse and I are tackling BN eventing. I was just curious if any other para-equestrians had evented and if anyone had any good tips
    http://bastianthewonderdragon.blogspot.com/

  • #2
    A friend who is a Grade II paraequestrian jumps my horse and schools him XC (along with, obviously, doing a kick-butt dressage test on him). She has not actually evented, however, as she was told by a TD that her adaptive equipment (velcro breakaway straps to keep stirrups near the girth, a second whip) would not be allowed for safety reasons (I'm assuming it refers to the velcros, not the extra whip). I guess dispensation certificates only apply in dressage land?
    Do you require adaptive equipment or a dispensation certificate? If so, what have your experiences been?
    Also, as an aside, para-jumping (not eventing, but stadium jumping) is already alive and well in Great Britain, with a movement afoot to bring it over here.
    I evented just for the Halibut.

    Comment

    • Original Poster

      #3
      Yeah, when I contacted the USEA about using my dispensations they said I could only get temporary presidential permission and only for temporary injuries/situations. So I can't use my dispensations. I normally only have velcro on my stirrups and I keep my whip in championship classes. I was planning on asking the TD at the event if I/they can at least inform the judge that I am a para-equestrian for the dressage? But so far at the Starter event I went to and the schooling CT the dressage judges haven't knocked my dressage rider score really at all, so so far so good!

      They did say that those magnetic stirrups were approved for use in Stadium and XC, but not for dressage so I am saving up my $$$ to get a pair.

      I've seen the para-show jumping and am very anxious for it to officially make its way over here, I think my horse would really shine!
      http://bastianthewonderdragon.blogspot.com/

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by BastiantheWonderDragon View Post
        I was planning on asking the TD at the event if I/they can at least inform the judge that I am a para-equestrian for the dressage?
        Why? Though I (sadly) don't know any para riders eventing, I know plenty who ride in the non-para classes at dressage shows. When they enter those classes, ride a Fourth Level or PSG test or whatever, they expect to be judged the same as every other rider in the class. If anything, I hear my friends express frustration that "regular" dressage judges notice their disability and are too generous. While it's ego-boosting to score an 82%, it's completely unhelpful in accurately assessing where you are in your riding and what needs improvement, when you know an international para judge, someone used to watching excellent riders who have disabilities and unimpressed by the disability itself, would give the same test closer to a 65%.
        I also hate to say it, but from the response my own friend got while investigating eventing with adaptive aids, I wonder/worry if identifying yourself as disabled will get you closer, unwanted scrutiny from officials worried you shouldn't be there or might be unsafe -- people looking for a reason to "stop you before you hurt yourself." I think I'd rather fly under the radar and pick up my ribbon at the end ... or just be one of the two dozen adults who happened to fall off their horses that day! (Unless, of course, there is some aspect of your disability that would be important for people to know about should you fall off or otherwise need medical assistance)
        I evented just for the Halibut.

        Comment


        • #5
          I'm a hunter/jumper rider and journalist who's looking for a para-equestrian (stadium) jumper, a trainer or someone involved in the movement to bring para-show jumping to the US. Do any of you know who I might talk to or where I might look?

          Any help is very much appreciated! Thanks!

          Comment

          • Original Poster

            #6
            Originally posted by NeverTime View Post
            Why? Though I (sadly) don't know any para riders eventing, I know plenty who ride in the non-para classes at dressage shows. When they enter those classes, ride a Fourth Level or PSG test or whatever, they expect to be judged the same as every other rider in the class. If anything, I hear my friends express frustration that "regular" dressage judges notice their disability and are too generous. While it's ego-boosting to score an 82%, it's completely unhelpful in accurately assessing where you are in your riding and what needs improvement, when you know an international para judge, someone used to watching excellent riders who have disabilities and unimpressed by the disability itself, would give the same test closer to a 65%.
            I have never received a "too-generous" score, they are usually right on the mark or sometimes a little tough (but that could just be my bias! lol) I showed for a year in dressage before I finally got my para-card and every single one of my tests has the same comment from the judge near the rider score: "Stop excessively kicking your horse/excessive leg movement" (worded in various ways). The scores for the actual movements have always reflected my horse's correctness or lack there of.

            Since getting my para-card I no longer get that comment on my tests and my rider score has gone from a 5 to a 7, that is the only place where I see an adjustment being made. My last two eventing tests I did not include my para information and I scored a 7 and an 8 on the rider score of my dressage test.

            I don't know, just figured there might be someone else out there who had been in my shoes before and might have some advice. My trainer and I are very careful about what me and my horse do and the decision to return to eventing for me was three years in the making. I'm lucky to have one gem of a horse so we're gonna give it a go. Thanks for the thoughts and ideas
            http://bastianthewonderdragon.blogspot.com/

            Comment


            • #7
              Thanks for explaining; that makes sense.
              Also, since you first posted this, I've learned/remembered that two of the riders who competed at the Paralympic selection trials also event (Mary Jordan, who is a Grade IV, won at BN on one of the same horses she competed with this weekend, and Wendy Fryke, who is a Grade III, was on a winning Adult Riders team a few years ago), so there ARE others out there!
              Best of luck and have fun with your horse! The best part is seeing how far you can go with a great partner...
              I evented just for the Halibut.

              Comment


              • #8
                Eventing is on my 1 day list.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I would be a grade IV rider. Just never went through the process of getting carded. My issue is with my eyesight. So it is a bit diffferent then yours. my horse will jump anything wup to BN. we school a couple novice fences here and there. However I am past the legally blind point. So I will not go above BN for our safety. I can not help my horse with a takeoff spot in no way shape or form. The horse could be trained to go higher but we do eventing for the fun of it.
                  The only adaptation I do is sunglasses to protect what vision I have.Since it is a somewhat common thing I don't mention it. I can see the cones/blobs stick above the fence line. I walk my courses a min of 5 times each. xcountry I will usually do one walk just paying attention to the footing and marking any questionable spots on the map.
                  So yes is can be done with the right trainer and the right horse. If you start to question if you can do something it is time to drop a level and school. I see you are in Pa. Theraputic classes are on the rise in my portion of Pa. It is just a matter of finding one to ride up to your level and not down to other riders. There is a show series that has walk/tro theraputic but then you are not allowed to canter. Which I think it is BS. If you ever have a Memorial weekend free check out Thorncroft. Big Theraputic show has dressage and a small jumping class.
                  Good luck and have fun.
                  I would love to see parajumping in the US. My horse could probably kick butt.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Cheese, from what I understand, there are quite a few blind riders involved in para-jumping overseas. Unlike talking letters in dressage, they use a lead horse to follow over the course, IIRC, the courses are about 3'6" for them.
                    I'd love to see it over here, too. Unfortunately, after hearing a steady buzz last year, I haven't heard anything recently...
                    I evented just for the Halibut.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      The Paralympic team coach, Missy Ransehousen, is based in Unionville, Pa. She's also a 4* three-day eventer, so the barn is a combination of dressage riders, eventers and paraequestrians. You couldn't ask for much more than that.
                      However, she doesn't have lesson horses per se. Most people who come to ride with her bring their own horses, and it is not inexpensive. More at bluehillfarmpa.com.
                      I evented just for the Halibut.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Doesn't hurt to ask. I am on lunch break so I have to keep this short. Will add names later. I tried the theraputic route as well. Since I have my own horse I felt like I was kind of shrugged off. Plus the lack of communication is astounding. I stck with mostly evnt trainers since they seem to be able to adapt easier. My mare is a bit difficult as well (ex barrel horese0 so I am even more picky.
                        Natelie do you have access to a horse or do you need a place with lesson horses? Sounds like you need a place with lesson horses but don't want to assume.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          See if you can track down Jane Cory. She was at Travelda but I think she left there. She is a dressage judge so she tends to be busy this time of year.
                          I would recomend my trainer but she is on maternity leave and probably won't be back to late fall/next spring.
                          For just dressage Kim Walnes is suppose to be good. She used to event. My vet uses her sometimes for dressage lessons. Also look into some of the trainers in LVDA (Lehigh Valley Dressage Assoc.) People seem to like most of them. The one I tried just did not mesh well with my horse. . I'll probably think of more later. There have been a couple that I really liked but have retired or moved.

                          Ipandell-If you find someone we can nudge in the right direction let me know. While I will only go up tp BN eventing, stadium is a differnt story. The fences fall. Would love to help get para jumping in the US.
                          Last edited by Cheese183; Jun. 17, 2012, 02:03 PM.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Bastian, Just saw your post on EN. Great show recap and congrats on the outing! Sounds like you had a blast, learned things and are just going to get better and better. Congrats! :-)
                            I evented just for the Halibut.

                            Comment

                            • Original Poster

                              #15
                              Originally posted by NeverTime View Post
                              Bastian, Just saw your post on EN. Great show recap and congrats on the outing! Sounds like you had a blast, learned things and are just going to get better and better. Congrats! :-)
                              Thanks! It went really well overall, the only problems I had were just typical OMG that fence looks huge-psych myself out problems, my disability didn't play a role except for losing my stirrup over the second to last XC fence and having such trouble getting it back! I'm looking forward to our next event in two weeks
                              http://bastianthewonderdragon.blogspot.com/

                              Comment

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