Last Day

DAY 24: 8:00am-12:30pm, 4:00pm-5:30pm Finishing up essay, including analysis of the two courses I created myself 5:30pm-6:30pm Practicing presentation for Tuesday

DAY 23: 9:00am-12:30pm Working on presentation 1:00pm-1:45pm meeting with Brad Ward 1:45pm- 2:15pm Meeting with Tech department to test computer 3:00pm-4:45pm Working on presentation

DAY 22: 8:30am-12:00pm Working on Presentation 4:30pm-6:00pm Working on Course 2

DAY 21: 3:00pm-3:30pm Meeting with Brad Ward 4:30:pm-7:30pm Working on Course 1 8:30pm-11:00pm Working on essay

DAY 20: 9:00am-12:30pm, 3:00pm-5:300pm Draft of Essay

DAY 19: 9:00am-11:00am George H. Morris: Because Every Round Counts 12:00pm-3:00pm Working on Draft for Essay 4:00pm-5:00pm Courses for Horses and blogging

DAY 18: 8:30am-9:00am, 10:00am-12:00am, 1:30pm-4:30pm, 10:00pm-10:30pm Writing first draft of essay

DAY 17: 9:00am-10:30am Courses for Horses A complete guide to designing and building show jumping courses by Christopher Coldrey, 11:30am-2:00pm Course Design Historical Roots, Theory, Practice, Aesthetics, Ethics and State of Art  by Arno Gego, 4:00pm-6:00pm George H. Morris: Because Every Round Counts edited by John Strassburger, 7:30pm-8:30pm Working on draft of essay

All you need to know about Jump-Offs

DAY 16: 9:00am-12:00pm, 2:00pm-4:00pm, 8:00pm-9:00pm Reading Equestrian Sports New Zealand, National High-Levelled Seminar on Course Design, Courses for Horses, blogging

Today was spent focusing on jump offs. First I went back to my notes with Buddy Brown, to review what he said about jump offs. His biggest points were that the jump off should have multiple changes of direction, use bumpers and guard rails, include inside options, test skills to the left and the right (as that does make a difference to the horses), change the pace up by having some galloping and some collecting, using the turns and stretches, and changing the time allowed to make a simple course harder.

I went back to the New Zealand Equestrian Sports guide which explained some of the rules for jump offs. First of all there can never be more than two jump-offs. I have never seen two jump-offs before so I went to clarify with some sources what that meant. At the masters invitational show at the end of the year, there are sometimes classes that are defined as two jump-offs, although it is really rare. Later in the rule book it did say that you can have three jump offs, but if it gets the four the fourth cannot be run and it is at the grand jury’s discretion whether it’s a tie or someone wins. This confused me and I again asked someone about this. My source told me that in the case of a six bar, which is six jumps in a row and the height of the last fence keeps getting bigger until only one horse is jumping clean, there can be jump-offs, but never more than four. In addition the rule book stated that the course designed can change the height or the spread of any fence part of the jump off after the first course. However, if the original course has a combination, than the jump-off must include at least one combination. In this combination included in the jump off, in a triple or quadruple, the middle element must always be used, you cannot use just the a and c element, the b element must be used. Also the course designer cannot change the distances inside the combinations. the jump off must have a minimum of six jumps in it, and he course designer cannot change the shape, type, or color of any fences. Finally the course designer can add an additional number of two fences/obstacles, but these must be present before the class begins.

Next I went back to the seminar notes to look at what those said about jump-offs. The main goal of jump-offs is to allow jumping ability, precision, skill, and speed to decide the winner. Again, this states that there must be one combination in the jump-off. However, this states that if there is a treble in the jump-off, it should not be reduced and remain a treble. In my experience though, I have noticed that usually the course designers take out the a or c element anyways. The notes also say that using a water jump is strongly not recommended in the jump-off. In addition there should be room for extending and collecting the canter. A side note also states that the start and finish line can change for the jump-off from the original course. Finally, it also notes that the less clear in the original round makes for a more interesting jump-off, and if only one jumps clear in the jump-off, that is better for the higher level classes.

National High-Levelled Seminar on Course Design

DAY 15: 11:00am-1:00pm, 2:30pm-5:00pm, 10:30pm-12:00am Reading National High-Levelled Seminar on Course Design, blogging

"Course-design is choreography for showjumping."

Today I spent my day reading the National High-Levelled Seminar on Course Design written by Philippe Gayot of Bethune, France, Arno Gego of Aachen, Germany, and Olaf Petersen of Westkirchen, Germany. These notes are from a course designing seminar that took place in July of 1990.

COURSE DESIGN is a creative and aesthetic task, asking for composition abilities and partly related to architecture, but enlarged by the whole complexity of basic and top sport and the production of rhythmical dynamics of horse and rider.

The COURSE DESIGNER is responsible for a maximum of good sport within the framework of given circumstances.

Although a lot of it was review, I did find some new and interesting details. First, there were ten main objectives, which I will summarize. The first objective is to make the sport exciting and interesting enough to attract spectators using the course as a tool. The second is to create interesting and rhythmical lines, given the materials, while making these look as good as possible. The third is to support the development of young riders and horses, much like Buddy Brown described. The fourth is similar, which is assisting these young and inexperienced riders and horses get positive experiences and confidence. The fifth is to correctly identify and properly use the type of competition. The sixth is to make sure to balance the type of tests being asked. For example not every test is by using a hard jump, but some can be by asking the rider to extend the canter or collect it quickly, essentially changing ace in a short amount of time. This is done by testing the skill of the horse, the rider, or the horse and rider together. The seventh is to have variation and diversity by avoiding repetition of tests and obstacles. The eighth is to introduce tests slowly and as levels go up, so that the more experienced riders and experiencing the hardest tests. The ninth is the protect the safety by trying to avoid risk of accidents. And the tenth objective is to avoid problems by asking for solvable tests.

The seminar also helps talk about ring size versus number of jumps, and how the week should carry out at a CSIO horse show. For example, it talks about how there are usually three big classes on thursday, a National Speed class (which has about 10 obstacles, runs at a speed of 350 meters/min, and has a max height of 1.30meters), a welcome stake (which has 10 obstacles, runs at 350meters/min, and a max height of 1.40 meters), and a qualification round for the grand prix on Sunday (which has 12 obstacles, runs at a speed of 400meters/min, and has a height of 1.50 meters). It goes through the whole week talking about these specs as guides to use for those big classes. In addition, it talks about the size of indoor versus outdoor arenas and how many jumps each size can hole. Minimum speeds of show jumping are also included, which are 400m/min for Grand Prix and 350 m/min for most table A classes. And then it has review of distances of combinations, which I’ve seen before in the other reading material I’ve been through.