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Basic Conditioning

Truman Prevatt said:

> It seems to me there that the real question is what are your goals.
> For a rider who is interested in riding at the upper levels,
> maybe even pursuing FEI, then there is one training/conditioning
> regiment necessary...For a rider interested in racking up miles on the 
> trail, most likely in the form of multday rides, then there is another
> conditioning/training regiment.  The wonderful thing about this sport
> is both people fit under the umbrella.

You will get no argument from me here.  I was not aware that we were 
talking about somebody who wanted to ride at the "upper levels, maybe 
even pursing FEI."  I thought you were talking about "basic 
conditioning" (i.e. not "upper level" conditioning), after all, that is 
the subject line of my post.  So, perhaps we can agree that the heavy 
duty cardiovascular conditioning that you are saying is required for the 
"upper levels" is not required for "racking up miles, most likely in the 
form of multi-day rides."

And indeed, the wonderful thing about this sport is there are those who 
can confine themselves to the, apparently, lower levels of the sport such 
as the National Mileage Championship, the Bill Thornburg Family Award, 
the Jim Jones Stallion Award, the Pioneer Award, the Husband and Wife 
Team Award, the Bill Stuckey Award, and the War Mare Award all of which 
were won by "racking up miles" at multi-day rides.  Even the year 2000 
National Hundred Mile Champion's first ride of the year was to do three 
days of the Death Valley Encounter.  

But for the bread and butter of this sport of people who just would like 
to participate in the Thousand Mile Horse Program (as near as I can 
tell, that is another way of putting "racking up miles on the 
[endurance] trail"), they can make due with the _basic_ conditioning 
that I suggested ("School the mind; condition the legs").  If they want 
to do the "upper levels" that Truman speaks of, they may have to do 
something beyond just "basic conditioning."  

> We will assume that this rider is not a new rider.

But in a previous post:

> ...we have a lot of newbe's on the list and we really
> have to worry about how cardiovascular conditioning along with 
> everything else.

So, I am confused.  Are we talking about basic conditioning that a 
novice rider needs to do with his horse so he can "do endurance" or are 
we talking about the conditioning required for those who are "interested 
in the upper levels, maybe even pursuing FEI."

Orange County, Calif.

p.s. Last I heard (a while ago), one of the places that the Kanavy's 
conditioned their horses for FEI was on a treadmill...even smaller than 
an arena.  You can do that on a full-time job...or you can do what some 
of the other "upper level" riders do, and pay somebody else to condition 
your horse for you (depends on how well the job pays:)).  There are lots 
of options for conditioning a horse with a full-time job, even for 
somebody who wants to do the "upper levels."

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