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Practical Horseman

Practical Horseman July 2016

It presents step by-step training programs and showing advice from recognized experts in hunters, jumpers, equitation, dressage, and eventing, along with money- and time-saving ideas on health care and stable management.

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United States
Active Interest Media
$8.14(Incl. tax)
$27.15(Incl. tax)
4 Issues

in this issue

2 min.
control what you can

At the 2016 Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event in April, I interviewed Olympic gold medalist Phillip Dutton after the first horse inspection. We chatted about his three horses, and then I asked whether he was concerned about the weather. Forecasters had (accurately) predicted rain for most of the competition and particularly bad storms during Saturday’s cross-country. In his low-key way, Phillip said, “There’s not much I can do about it, so I’ll just take it a day at a time and prepare the horses as best I can.” He finished the event in fourth, fifth and 13th places. I recalled Phillip’s response after reading Mental Skills Coach Tonya Johnston’s column this month (page 18). In it, she talks about removing factors from your focus that you have no control over, such as the…

7 min.
two riders getting “caught”

George H. Morrisis the former chef d’équipe of the U.S. Equestrian Federation Show Jumping Team. He serves on the USEF National Jumper Committee and Planning Committee, is an adviser to the USEF High-Performance Show Jumping Committee and is president of the Show Jumping Hall of Fame. 1 Our first rider has a very good leg position with her heel down, ankle flexed, toes out the right amount for her conformation and the stirrup leather at a right angle to the girth. My initial impression of her base of support and upper body is that she was “caught.” This is an expression that you don’t hear any more, and it’s more of a feeling than something you can see. It’s in the same category as dropping back in the air and getting…

5 min.
choose the best percheron-cross sporthorse

Whether judging a model class, evaluating a prospect for a client or sizing up the yearlings at home, I first stand back and look for an overall impression of balance and symmetry. My ideal horse “fits” in a square box. By that, I mean he is defined by matching and equal parts, both front to back and side to side. This allows for athletic ability, soundness, trainability and longevity in the job. A horse who fits in a box will have a body made up of one-third shoulder, one-third back and one-third hindquarters. I like to see the withers and point of croup at the same level. The horse’s stance from point of shoulder to buttock should equal the distance from the height of the withers to the ground. I also always…

6 min.
control the controllable

An equestrian mental-skills coach and A-circuit competitor, Tonya Johnston has a master’s degree in sport psychology. Her book, Inside Your Ride: Mental Skills for Being Happy and Successful with Your Horse is available in paperback or e-book editions. For more info on Tonya’s work, go towww.TonyaJohnston.com. You have probably run across the magazine Real Simple at the very least in the checkout line at the grocery store. It’s full of organizational tips, streamlining life hacks and creative ideas to help you de-stress and declutter your life. It capitalizes on a truth that I think many of us subscribe to: the more straightforward, the better. This month we are creating an opportunity for you to do a similar de-cluttering on the overall focus you bring to your riding. How? By editing the…

12 min.
rolex 2016: déjà vu for two top riders

Based at Fox Covert Farm, in Upperville, Virginia, Jim Wofford competed in three Olympics and two World Championships and won the U.S. National Championship five times. He is also a highly respected coach. For more on Jim, go towww.jimwofford.blogspot.com. Now that eventing in the Olympics is run at the threestar level, you go to a four-star event to see the best cross-country riders in the world—and on the North American continent, that means the Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event. Each year, Rolex provides a unique chance to watch the best of the best in action. This year, Germany’s Michael Jung (aka “The Terminator”) left no doubt as to who is the best of the best as he became the second rider in Rolex history to win Rolex in successive years on the…

7 min.
orio on the radar

Lauren Billys’ bid to qualify for the 2016 Rio Olympics and represent Puerto Rico came down to the wire in March at the CIC*** at Twin Rivers in Paso Robles, California. Galloping for a score good enough to claim one of three individual Olympic eventing berths allotted to riders representing South American countries, Lauren knew that a strong finish at the end of the year-long qualifying period could secure her Olympic dream. Not only was she fault-free at Twin Rivers, she won the event riding the 14-year-old Irish Sporthorse Castle Larchfield Purdy. The effort was not only a crucial victory for the 28-year-old California-born rider, but it reflected the West Coast eventing community’s embrace of its international prospects. Twin Rivers’ organizers, the Baxter family, had run the three-star division specifically so…