Sunday, October 07, 2007

Being on the "Other Side"

Finally it is about time for the IHSA season to begin, but as an officer this year there is a lot of work to be done before the first show. One of my jobs as co-captain is to assist the coach and the captain in evaluating incoming freshman to place them in the appropriate level. Watching all of the new riders just reminds me of how I felt those first weeks of school and how nervous I was as a new rider on the Del Val IHSA team. Even though I miss the excitement of not knowing what to expect it is relieving to be an "upper classman" and know the ropes. It is kinda fun to be the one answering the questions rather than asking them.

Since I am side by side with the coach and captain I really get a feel of what a coach looks for during a placement ride at a school with IHSA as a club sport. Since no cuts are made students are evaluated based on past show experience. The placement rides are just to ensure that the students are safe in the level that they are placed. SO the most important thing to remember is not to be nervous!!! When placement rides are held at a school the coaches and captains WANT you to be where the paper work puts you. They are not judging you or waiting for you to mess up, so if you are interested in joining a club IHSA team just relax and ride the best you can. Don't be afraid to have fun and enjoy yourself...remember riding is fun!!! Stay Tuned for the First show results!


At Mon Oct 29, 08:59:00 PM GMT-5, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey! I'm very interested in setting up an IHSA team at my DIII school. I sent out an e-mail this morning and there are a dozen students interested. I'm visiting a prospective stable next Tuesday, with the group and the assistant athletic director. I've arranged the lesson such that the ADA, who has never been on a horse, gets the first half hour, then I lesson the second half hour. The group of prospective team members gets to watch us lesson. We'll get a stable tour after the lesson. I have so many questions about starting this team. We'll be a club sport at the college, but I hope to send out the IHSA paperwork to become eligible to compete.
My questions are: how often do you practice on horseback each week? how do you accomodate riders without showclothes? How are your practices run to suit the IHSA class format? Do you cross train? What do you do to cross train?
Thank you so much for your replies.

At Sun Dec 02, 05:10:00 PM GMT-5, Blogger Sara Gumbiner said...

During the season we practice about once a week, the day before the horse show. Since the team is so big usually only people who are listed to show are scheduled to lesson. If there are extra spaces or we can fit it in we try to let other people ride so that they can get the extra practice. Surprisingly most of our students have show clothes but when the situation arises when someone doesn't or forgets other riders on the team are quick to lend any thing that may be needed.

Our coach is very familiar with IHSA and what the judge typically looks for in an equitation rider. The lessons usually runs just like a class would. Always working on the equitation and strength of the riders. The courses that are used at the region shows tend to be pretty consistent so we do our best to replicate the course at home.

Unfortunately we don't have any cross country facilities so we don't typically cross train. The riders in the equine Studies program ride both hunt seat and Dressage but team riders only practice hunt seat.

If you have any further questions don't hesitate to ask or refer to the official IHSA website! Thank you for your support and Good Luck!


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