ridecamp@endurance.net: [endurance] Long Distance Horse career

[endurance] Long Distance Horse career

Wendy Milner (wendy@nsmdserv.cnd.hp.com)
Fri, 29 Sep 95 11:34:47 MDT

> More than numbers, the listening of your horse is great.

Definately. I was thinking more of the minimum amount of time needed
to bring a young horse up to distance. To bring the horse up, you
must listen to the horse and know when he is ready to move up.

> Our work upgrading should be easier here in France because we have more distances :
> 60 km : 37.3 m 90Km : 55.9 110 km : 68.36 m and 130 km : 80 miles before 100.
> How do you manage 50 to 100 miles gap at 7 ?
There are 2 day 100s. That is, 50 miles on day one and 50 miles on
day two. These will tell you if your horse is physically ready
to continue.

There are also the occasional 75 mile rides.

> >So, until you are really fresh at the end of 50 miles, you
> >might not be ready to go on to longer distances.
> We must have in mind that a horse can be fresh after a long distance ride (even after 100).

I've seen a few of the best 100 mile horses. The come across the
finish line looking like they have been out for their morning jaunt.
When their riders look the same, I'm truely amazed.

> The psychological side of the preparation (strong mental) is as important as the physical side.
> Many thanks for input Wendy.
> How many years of experience did it take to you to conclude to this 'well mannered' attitude ?
The well mannered attitude of the horse becomes important when the
rider's body just can't handle the pounding anymore. Actually it
was when I started dressage training that the idea really sunk into
my brain. First thing we were working on was to get a nice rounded
frame on the horse. That means, get the head out of the clouds and
get the back up where it belongs. Wow, the difference in feel for
me. My youngster was a dream to ride when he did that. And no
bounce. Put his head up and back down, and it was murder to ride.

I hear comments like the following all the time "Boy my horse was
jigging all over the place for the first 30 miles. Then he settled
in and he was so easy to ride." Well, I don't want to ride those
jigging miles. So I tell my horse to do the same thing we do in
the dressage ring. Go easy and well. Much easier to ride. Much
better for the horse too.

I got one comment that sent me laughing. Drake was troting nice,
round, easy to ride, but a bit slow. He's only 5 so we don't push
it. A woman on a jigging, hollow backed, head high, arab came by
and told me that I should teach my horse how to trot. I came in
2nd on the ride. She barely finished with a tired and sore horse.
While having the correct frame is a bit hard on the horse at first,
once those muscle are built up, the horse will use less energy and
feel much better throughout the ride.

I don't see any reason why you can't teach a horse to listen to you
rather than the herd, and to go in the correct frame.

My dressage trainer laughs and says that he is getting me ready for an
endurance ride where they throw in a dressage test in the middle.
In fact, I find that being able to leg yield around an obsticle,
bring my horse into a nice frame, and generally just ride better
has helped my trail riding and endurance riding greatly.


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Wendy Milner HPDesk: wendy_milner@hp4000 Training Development Engineer HP-UX: wendy@fc.hp.com Mail Stop 46 Telnet: 229-2182 3404 E. Harmony Rd. AT&T: (970) 229-2182 Fort Collins, CO, 80525 FAX: (970) 229-4292