Tag Archives: Jumping

How to Explain Horseback Riding to Anyone

We all have friends, and friends are awesome.

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Some of our friends are horse people, and totally get what we are talking about all the time. For instance, you can say your horse “was a little up today, but only bucked a few times and was otherwise fine” and these horsey friends will nod in understanding..because that’s not jargon to them.

But we also have non-horsey friends…and to them that is pretty much a foreign language. Your non-horse friends are also awesome, but sometimes they try to ‘get hip with your lingo’ and stumble…and sometimes they just stare blankly and pray you talk about boys, or ice cream, or the latest episode of The Bachelor so they won’t have to listen to you talk about your horse again. And this can be tricky to manage, but here are some things you might hear, and how to address them nicely:

  1. “How was your race?” – Because mainstream media touts racing as the ‘horse sport’ of choice, this tends to cause many people to wrongfully assume that all riders are racers (kind of like how everyone assumes that anyone who lives in Texas must be a Country music fan). It’s ok to correct them a few times, but be nice. As a hobbyist group, we tend to not realize how defensive we are about our beloved sport…and can come off as jerks. So don’t be a jerk. If your friend feels the need to always ask ‘how fast’ you went, or if you raced anyone today…just smile and re-explain that your discipline has nothing to do with going fast (unless you actually do race horses, or are a jumper).
  2. “But doesn’t your horse do all the work?” – Don’t flip out, this is a common misconception. Because most actions that involve sitting are commonly misconstrued as ‘easy’, horseback riding is an easy target. For the same reason that Nascar is belittled for just being about going fast and turning left (see Talladega Nights), many people assume that things you do whilst sitting on your butt require little to no effort. Just calmly explain that what you do is a challenging physical activity, and that no, riding a horse is not like driving a car. If you still have difficulty letting this concept sink in, find a good ‘thrills and spills’ video on Youtube, and try having them watch that.
  3. “You horse is brown, so it’s a clydesdale, right?” – This one probably will only happen once, as once you’ve established that not all brown horses pull beer carts you should be good to go. Because Budweiser uses clydesdale horses in their ads, its only natural that most people assume horses that are big and brown must be clydesdales (your average person might have caught wind of the Romney horse and be aware that warmbloods exist, but it isn’t likely). If you ride a warmblood, feel free to explain what that means…and if you have a thoroughbred, be prepared for a renewed believe that you race and go fast. See 1. again.

For the most part, these are the only 3 annoyances you will probably experience. The exception to any of these, is the person that firmly swears by what they find in a Google search or from ‘sources’ like Yahoo answers and comments in YouTube videos. In the case of these, just don’t bother trying to explain to them that:

  • Spirit Stallion of the Cimarron is just a movie, and your horse is fine with being ridden
  • The Parelli method is not the only effective method out there
  • No, they cannot ride your horse without permission
  • Yes, even if they have been taking notes from old western movies
  • No, rearing and kicking out is the opposite of what should happen (those were stunt horses)
  • No, you cannot ride your horse on the highway
  • Yes, you are sure you cannot ride your horse on the highway, its illegal

Hopefully this helps!

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Famous Last Words: Equestrian Style

I thought to cheer you all up (and after that thrillingly long hiatus) I’d share a few funny possible equestrian ‘famous last words’:

  • “Oh he doesn’t need ear puffies, he was fine yesterday”
  • “I don’t think I’m going to lunge him today, I’m sure he’ll be fine after that month off!”
  • “It’s going to rain? Quick, open that umbrella!”
  • “Oh its fine, your boyfriend can ride him without a helmet, experience, or supervision. I’m sure he’ll be fine.”
  • “Well I saw it work in this movie once, so I’m going to try it.”
  • “This guy at the dude ranch told me it worked with his horses, so I’m going to try it in my clinic with George Morris.”
  • “I’m sure you can text and ride, it’s not like that’s as unsafe as texting and driving.”

Got any great ‘last words’ to add? Tell me int the comments!

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HITS Day 2

Final Summation:

  1. Crackers jumped in a ring
  2. Crackers jumped out of a ring (don’t worry he was supposed to)
  3. Crackers had a smashing good time

Skye and Nina looked fabulous

The Powers sisters, no surprise to anyone, looked fabulous

Taxicab and Abby rocked it out

Troy and Anastasia guided George and Maaaaaavelous beautifully, as expected.

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Official Equestrian Coverage Schedule

Instead of a news writeup, here is what you really want to read: the equestrian olympic TV schedule for NBC.

I am in no way affiliated with NBC. I just like horses. I’m not even going to waste any space with pictures. All these times are courtesy of Yahoo:

Saturday, July 28

Individual and team eventing dressage: 1:45 pm. – 2:45 pm. (NBC Sports Network)

Sunday, July 29

Individual and team eventing dressage: 2:15 pm. – 3:00 pm. (NBC Sports Network)

Monday, July 30

Individual and team eventing – Cross Country (LIVE): 8:15 am. – 12:45 pm. (NBC Sports Network)

Tuesday, July 31

Eventing – Team Jumping final (LIVE): 6:00 am. – 8:15 am. (NBC Sports Network)

Eventing – Individual Jumping final (LIVE): 9:15 am. – 10:30 am.

GO USA, or whoever you root for.

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Attack of the Clones

The legendary Gem Twist has a clone! Did you know? Image courtesy of Tuesday’s Horse

Confused about the title? Well here’s the skinny: clones of former olympic champion horses have no been approved to compete in future olympic endeavors! In a recent ABC article, the The Fédération Equestre Internationale(FEI) confirmed that though these clones would be too young to compete in the London 2012 olympics, they would be allowed to compete in upcoming events. The decision came after an inquiry into whether or not these clones of equine superstars would have an advantage over their un-cloned competitors. The result? Clones were deemed only 98% accurate copies of their originals, but it was decided that the training and upbringing of the horse was what determined its ability to compete, not genes. Perhaps in the next olympics we might be able to sneak a peek at Gem Twist’s clone.

Get a good look! This is Gemini Twist, the rumored clone of Gem Twist who has been training under equestrian legend Frank Chapot. Image courtesy of Young Jumpers.

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High Hopes For High Kingdom

Zara Phillips was nominated for the British Olympic Team this past weekend after a stellar performance at the Bramham aboard mount ‘High Kingdom’. The royal is the granddaughter of Queen Elizabeth II, and will attempt to emulate the successes of parents Princess Anne and Captain Mark Phillips, both of whom competed for the British team previously.

Will London 2012 see a royal flush from Phillips and High Kingdom? Image courtesy of Voxxi.

As equestrian fans gear up for London 2012, we will have to wait and see what this pair of royals has in store for the competition!

Due to the fact that the olympics will be taking place soon, look forward to more great olympic riding updates!

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The Olympic Long List Welcomes Laura Kraut and Beezie Madden

Fans of show jumping will be pleased to hear that two more familiar names will join the long list before the Selection trials set to run from March 21st until March 24th at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center in Wellington, FL. Joining previously announced competition McLain Ward, Beezie Madden and Laura Kraut will join the hopeful contenders to represent the United States in London this coming summer. Joining these ladies on the list will be their respective mounts: Kraut aboard Cherry Knoll Farm’s Cedric, and Madden aboard Coral Reef Ranch’s Coral Reef Via Volo.

From Left to Right:Will Simpson, Laura Kraut, Beezie Madden and McLain Ward
who won the Gold Medal at the 2008 Olympic Games. Image courtesy of Zimbio.

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Getting Back On The Horse: A Word of Advice

Greetings from Oranjestad, Aruba everyone!

Horses and motivational sayings have a long proud history in America. As Ronald Reagan once said, “There’s nothing so good for the inside of a man like the outside of a horse” Many famous equestrian idioms have been inducted into our daily life, however none have taken off quite like the saying, “When you fall off a horse, you have to get back in the saddle”, along with its many variations and adaptations. Though it is unclear who first said this motivational phrase (and when), it has served as one of the most universal motivational phrases for nearly every difficult situation: If we are to assume that ‘life’ had all the mannerisms of a horse, then we must ‘fall off’ all the time. Don’t believe me? Here are a few situations where this phrase works fairly well:

Lose your job? Get back in the saddle and ride it out.

Rough hangover from the night before? Get back on the horse.

Or take it from Sandra Bullock:

“I didn’t think I was ready to go back to acting, but that role was a great way to get back on the horse.”

(Actress Sandra Bullock talking about returning to movies after her divorce. (Associated Press))

Image courtesy of Laurel Hill Event Horses. Click to read their suggestions on how to fall safely from a horse!

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