Stadium Jumping

 

Stadium Jumping

World Equestrian Games – Stadium Jumping.

 
Lusitano-Stadium JumpingWorld Equestrian Games – Stadium Jumping Event is the third and last event done in the Eventing competition in a World Equestrian Championship.   It is a bit of a letdown for the audience after the excitement that the cross-country phase leaves behind.   But it is also very interesting to watch.   It is easier to watch the team’s jumping characteristics and abilities.   It is also a show of endurance and horseflesh quality after three days of grueling work during the dressage and cross country competitions.
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Lusitano-Stadium JumpingThis event is held in an arena and the obstacles are placed in a circle so the team has to move around the arena giving a chance to everyone to see them in action.   Between twelve and twenty obstacles are set and the separation between them depends on the Level of professionalism the teams have.   Obstacles are highly decorated and they have different heights and combinations so the teams can show off their abilities.   The teams are judged based on penalties for dropping poles or parts of obstacles and on the amount of time it takes them to complete the circuit.
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Lusitano-Stadium JumpingKnocking down a pole or obstacle adds four penalties to the team.   Disobedience, which includes refusal, moving backwards away from the obstacle or trying to circle around, is penalized with four points the first time.   The second time eliminates the team.   Falling from the horse is also grounds for elimination.   If the horse falls the team is also eliminated.  Jumping the obstacle from the wrong side is also penalized with elimination.   Going over the time limit is penalized with one penalty for every second over the clock. The team with the fewer points wins.
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Lusitano-Stadium JumpingIn general of all the different competitions designed by individual countries or sanctioned by the FEI, like the Olympic Games; Eventing is probably the hardest and most stressing for both rider and horse.   It is not easy for a team to be allowed to participate in it at any level especially in the professional level where the obstacles and physical requirements of the team are so strict and difficult.   It is fun for the audience to watch the horse’s race or jump gracefully over the obstacles but they never stop to think about the long hours of training and practice the team had to go through to get to where they are now.
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Lusitano-Stadium JumpingAscending through the different categories and levels is not easy and it requires practice, exercise and most of all intelligence on the part of the horse.   The horse must learn and remember everything it has to do.   Every Equestrian Association in the world has a procedure and requirements that have to be fulfilled for a team to change level.   So the next time you are sitting in the stands watching these centaurs compete against each other or simply show of their abilities during an exhibition, remember that both of them, man and horse, went through a lot of work, sweat and frustration so you could enjoy their performance.
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