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    Re: [RC] [RC] Comments on LD - Deanna German

    >I have yet to see anyone not putting their horse first, be it 10 years ago or
    > in the few rides I've done so far this year.
    I hear/read this a lot from riders, which makes sense because you're out on
    trail, plus you have your own concerns. Stick around camp and crew or
    volunteer in the pulse or vet area. You'll see it. I've seen it, not a lot,
    but often enough to be alarmed.
    >I could only see submitting x-rays of the knees to "prove" a rider was not
    >riding a horse too early.
    If you're going to present the growth plate arguement, what about the growth
    plates in the back which are the last to close? If the knees are closed,
    that mean the tendons and bones are ready too?
    >All in all, peer pressure is the biggest motivator.
    But the beauty of an overseeing organization is that it has the resources of
    wisdom and experience (and maybe $$) that can be summoned to present an
    educational format if the organization so desires. Why do we make new people
    guess what the best way to go about things is?
    The fact remains that, as of now, there exists no ride format to EDUCATE new
    riders. I know of a rider who wants to "race" yet has no experience taking
    care of a horse over a distance, any distance. She entered one LD a few
    years ago on a borrowed horse, got pulled at halfway, but she still acquired
    the race bug. I think it would be great if there was an AERC format to
    educate this type of person. For a random person who shows up to do a
    25-mile LD "race", the information is just not there. All they know is they
    can go as fast as they want, for a long time... or at least until the horse
    breaks down or is pulled.
    >As I've never seen
    >anyone "racing" a baby, I guess I have a mental vision of it happening, and
    >folks saying something to the rider.
    But this is negative reinforcement. The peer pressure will be removed when
    the rider arrives at the right way either guessing, stumbling into it or
    some other way. Why not be proactive and provide a positive direction?
    Deanna (Ohio)
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