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Practical Horseman

Practical Horseman May 2017

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
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4 Issues

in this issue

2 min.
a sport of leaders

Leaders in the eventing world come in many stripes—from professionals in the industry to venues paving the way for elite competition on our home turf. I met the new U.S. Eventing Association president, Carol Kozlowski, a decade ago during a cross-country clinic. I had been thrilled to finally get the chance to ride with one of my idols who evented a Connemara, just as I did. As Carol takes over the helm at the USEA this year, she says, “Leadership is often best conducted by example” (p. 24). True words spoken from a professional who’s well-known as a lifelong volunteer, a champion for the little guy and a tireless campaigner for safety. Another eventer featured in this issue is Colleen Rutledge, a four-star rider who’s passionate about correct form in the saddle.…

5 min.
choose the best eventer

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…

7 min.
jumping clinic with george morris

Which Rider Is Not Jumping Ahead? 1 This rider’s stirrup is too far back on her foot—to improve suppleness of the leg, about one-quarter of the foot should be in the iron for jumping. But it’s angled just about correctly so that it is perpendicular to the girth and her little toe is touching the outside iron. Though the rider’s calf is on the horse and her leg is in a solid position, the stirrup could be a hole shorter because the knee angle is 120 to 130 degrees instead of the correct 110. Her buttocks are too far out of the saddle and she’s a poster girl for a roached back. Along with that, she has thrown her upper body onto the horse’s neck and is ducking. To correct the roached…

8 min.
abuse: several faces, all ugly

Abuse has been on my mind recently due to various breaking news stories that have crossed my computer screen. 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. Not a welcome topic for a perfectly nice day? Abuse is an ugly subject, and we instinctively turn away from it. However, bad news never improves with time. We need to confront abuse, not avoid it. Once I got interested, I did what I usually do: first, go to my Webster’s Dictionary and look up the definition of the term in question. Bad Effect or Bad Purpose As it turns out, abuse comes in several different forms.…

9 min.
carol kozlowski: ’don’t ever close your mind’

Q To what do you attribute your success as a rider, trainer and a leader in this industry? CK I’ve learned over the course of my career to pick and choose my battles. I try not to be confrontational. Maybe it’s working with a group of people and we don’t agree. Or working with a horse. It’s trying to be thoughtful. I ask myself, “What is the smoothest path forward while still being intent on gaining my ground?” Q How do you define leadership? CK Leadership is often best conducted by example. I go through my day trying to do the right thing. I hear a lot from people that they know that I am going to try, to the best of my ability, to do best for everyone. I don’t have an…

13 min.
a leap of faith

When a last-minute injury to his horse halted Ryan Wood’s dream to compete at the Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event in 2007, the then-25-year-old eventer vowed to return from his Australian homeland and gallop across the fabled bluegrass one day. After selling all his possessions to move to America 18 months later, Ryan started from scratch, methodically building his career. Now 34, Ryan launched himself back into the spotlight last year when he returned to Rolex with three horses, and that was just the beginning of what proved to be the most successful season of his career. A tireless work ethic and dogged resilience defined Ryan’s journey to the top along with the timeless truth that taking a leap of faith is often the first pivotal step in realizing a dream. Born to Ride Born…