Unofficial Hacking and Double Bridles

Discussion in 'Horse Showing and Events' started by Northern Peregrine, Jul 30, 2009.

  1. Cassy Horse

    Cassy Horse Well-known Member

    I agree, if you are in the official ring your horse has to "look" quality as well as go well. Some horses aren't good enough looking but that does not mean that they cannot be schooled to a high level and be able to be ridden in a double in the unofficial - these horses will not go well in the official because of their looks but why deny them the chance of progressing into the double if they are ready for it just because the horse doesn't have the presence/attractiveness to compete official. And perhaps if the rider is really serious about wanting to go even further, they might want to look at finding a horse that is "pretty" enough for the official hack ring.

    I for one started riding at a young age and had many lessons off reputable instructors which led me to ride in a double in the show ring when I was still in primary school - and my horses did go well. It's just a matter of getting the right lessons off the right people, taking their advice onboard and practicing at home!
  2. sil

    sil Gold Member

    I don't understand why you think hacking and dressage are meant to be similar. The frame may look the same, but what the judges are looking for is completely different. Hacking doesn't have a 'training scale'. Hacking is about having the most beautiful, desirable hacking horse, a horse that is well schooled (ie a pleasure to ride, not necessarily adhering to the german training scale) and that displays type and refinement in its movement and appearance.

    Just like in dressage, there are good and bad trainers, riders, and good and bad mannered horses. You don't need to be a dressage rider to be a good rider, and your horse doesn't need to be a dressage horse to be a good horse.

    Personally I enjoy watching dressage and would love to have a go one day. However I don't believe that dressage is the be all and end all of training a horse in an english discipline, nor do I feel that a double bridle should only be allowed on an educated dressage horse, or even only on a competition horse of any nature.

    edited to add: Just came across this video of a junior competing in equitation. Check out the quality of her hands in these photos, this is how you want a kid to be carrying a curb! Soft attentive hands, a light touch on the snaffle rein, and very soft on the curb.
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2009
  3. Que Sera Sera

    Que Sera Sera Well-known Member

    Oh I should have also put a thing in about "looks" too. Unfortunately a stunningly bred QH or an appy is not going to make it in official. They are not 'type'. Sucks and I disagree with it, but its a fact of hacking.

    My comment about sway backs and club foots was aimed at the TBs and RPs that are the hacking 'type'. If you have one of these and are competing in unofficial in a double, get your backside out of there and into official.

    Our little Anglo Arab was too tiny in the front to do official, but did well in unofficial. Our TB has never competed unofficially to my knowledge, though his behaviour and topline are not consistent with being good competition in official atm, but we will get there eventually and so have no intention of competing unofficially with him.
  4. horse girl Jess

    horse girl Jess Well-known Member

    Some shows say on the program/entry that doubles aren't allowed (only ever seen this in unofficial rings), the best person to check with is the individual show's organiser.

    If you are just doing it for looks, I don't see what is wrong with that since 1) looks is all hacking is about and 2) your horse sounds educated and accepting enough to wear it while you ride it.
  5. Arnie

    Arnie Gold Member

    Personally wether it be unofficial or official if your using it just for looks then your using it for the wrong reason.

    If you want it to complete the picture (and I love that completed picture) then I'd exect the horse to be able to compete a very high level dressage test.
  6. pso

    pso Gold Member

    whats the difference between 'just for looks' and 'to complete the picture'?
  7. Lin

    Lin Well-known Member

    And I'll ask, what's the difference between "pleasure to ride" and adherence to the training scale? To me, a horse that has no rhythm and is as stiff as a board ain't much of a pleasure to ride! :)

    The training scale ain't just for dressaaaarge. ;)
  8. MPKG

    MPKG Active Member

    How many of you have actually been to a high level hack show lately?

    If you have I think you would find that the poorly educated, stiff, resistant horses are a very small minority, which might I add you get in any discipline.

    Also I only use the double for show, however he goes very well in it, doesn't resist at all so I don't think I am "using it for the wrong reasons".Just because a horse can't do travers/renvers, half pass or flying changes, that doesn't mean they aren't ready for a double.

    I think those that are on the hacky bashing band wagon should go and watch something like HOTY finals, I think you would be pleasantly surprised with the quality of the work. You could count the resistant horses/ponies on one hand (there will be 100 horses in finals). You won't find any of them doing tempi changes or passage but if they are comfortable in a double why do you care so much?
  9. Tallarook

    Tallarook Well-known Member

    My Comment: I see sooooo many people no matter what discipline dont even know how their bit or bits they are using work???? If the riders were educated they would not treat the horses the way they do. - this is in all areas of equestrian

    My other comment is - If my memory serves me well - Interschool competition each year you will find the majority of the top placings in the dressage ring - those kids are from hacky backgrounds - am i correct or am i correct????
  10. pso

    pso Gold Member

    MPKG is right- the high levels in ANY discipline are a pleasure to watch...**)Some people never aspire to do more...If they did- they would DO dressage, not hacking...horses for courses;)

    What we call a training scale...others just call training!!!!:}

    Personally- I wish doubles were optional in dressage- like they are in hacking*#)
  11. Midas

    Midas Well-known Member

    ditto to this, well said Sil!:)

    Nice youtube clip too!
  12. Tallarook

    Tallarook Well-known Member

    If someone does show horse, how does that make them not aspiring as a rider/competitor?

    I see alot of people doing dressage who dont make it past novice/elementry level, does that make them less aspiring?

    I see alot of people competing at the local pony club run ode events year after year they may make it up to c or b grade, they might just enjoy what they are doing. How does that make them a less aspiring rider?

    If you look at the horse industry, most horse owners do it because they enjoy their horses. Some of us are show horse, some dressage or eventing, and some are western. I think it would be a happier horse world if the owners and riders spent more time educating themselves about their horses and riding rather than worrying about what discipline the person next door does.
  13. MPKG

    MPKG Active Member


    Well said!
  14. Its Party Time

    Its Party Time Well-known Member

    Scorpio you are one very wise lady! **):)*
  15. Lin

    Lin Well-known Member

    Don't get your jocks in a twist, MPKG. :) I'm commenting on Sil's comment above where she said that hacking is not like dressage where the horse is judged on looks and being a pleasure to ride, not adherence to the german training scale.

    Just trying to point out that the training scale is relevant to all disciplines, not just dressage. We're all striving for a horse with good rhythm and suppleness and one that goes forward into whatever contact you ask for. So the training of a hack, dressage horse, showjumper, western pleasure, reiner whatever should be along similar lines!
  16. MPKG

    MPKG Active Member

    Obviously people will have there own opinions but I really don't think this one is justified, as I said before, I would encourage you or any one else to go to HOTY, 5th September at SEC and see just how much quality this state has to offer.
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2009
  17. princeton

    princeton Well-known Member

    Hmmm...I knew I was doing something wrong.....:p

    I completely use a double just for looks. Why else would I use it? Its certainly not to assist in gaining the correct frame or increasing engagement or collection or any of the reasons it might be used in dressage....none of which I claim to know because I dont compete at that level.

    My horse goes the same in a halter and lead as it does in a double.....its completely for 'look'.

    I dont really agree with the 'naughty but stunning' horses winning. Certainly the shows I have been to compliency and willingness and trainablility have been part of the winning equation.

    Maybe I have been going to the wrong shows?

    I couldnt care less if an unofficial horse is in a dble bridle....I dont really care what others do with their horses. :)

    Some horses will never be official standard, their confirmation and paces dont magically change after a year in unofficial.
    I dont know many official horses that have gone unofficial first unless their rider has had good reason.

    I love these threads...... makes me realise how little I know about riding because I 'hack' :D
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2009
  18. princeton

    princeton Well-known Member

    Completely agree with this.
  19. MPKG

    MPKG Active Member

    PMSL, I think my IQ dropped 20 points when I started hacking as well lol.

    Well said Princeton.
  20. RPS

    RPS Well-known Member

    Well said, shame more people don't realise this

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