Horse Fall..

TeamWazz

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Was at my first ever event yesterday (an unofficial ODE) which was probably a bit more than I should have bitten off! Big course with plenty of technical stuff which in hindsight I wouldn't have done if I'd known how big it was. Unfortunately due to bad jockey skills getting very nervous at a hanging log over a massive ditch I fell off in the cross country and was taken to A&E as a precaution.

X-rays came back fine as did CT scans, nothing sinister or dangerous. All I have today is a bit of a headache (similar to that of banging my head against a door or something - nothing severely painful just annoying!) which is passing as the day goes on. Winnie, my horse, beached himself on the log but only has a few superficial grazes. Physio is checking him tomorrow but wasn't stiff or sore today whatsoever and trotted up sound. Completely happy in himself acting totally in character.

What I am asking however, is that I have entered our first BE level event this Saturday and wanted advice on whether it is too soon? I am keen, haven't lost any confidence, and feel well enough to do it. It's a much smaller, easier course with only one double and nothing technical. Horse is always very bold, super fit, and the course I've entered is famous for being nice and gentle to get into BE with.

Is it madness to be doing it? I have talked to my mum about it and she says to go with my gut instinct (which is to do it as our next is a BE100 at a fairly infamous 100 level - more like novice - course!) but I wanted to check what anyone else has done, and what they would suggest.
 

Molly'sMama

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Hi!
I would say to make sure you feel good on the day, and good when you practise in between. If you feel bad at any point ,even off during the dressage, pull out. Not worth getting hurt or losing confidence, particularly not at your first.

Trusting your gut is always a good way to go. I had a bad fall, bruised my hip muscle to the point of not walking for three days, but ,despite not really wanting to, got back on a week later . Horse knew I wasn't happy and ditched me again.
The moral is ; don't put your pride over your safety. Nothing wrong with giving it a go, but also nothing wrong with bowing out if things start slipping/you feel overfaced.
Good luck!
 

TarrSteps

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What does your instructor think? That is, after all, what you pay for. If you are both okay, your doctor is happy with you competing, jumping goes well this week (including an XC school) and the course is a) easier than the last one and b) well within your skill set and you know your mistake was just a glitch, then it's not an insane idea.

But do I have this wrong, for your third event ever, presumably for both you and the horse, you're doing a top end 100 course even though you will have, at best one completion and you felt your problems last time out were because of a riding error caused by nerves? No offence but on paper that sounds a recipe for disaster!
 

suzi

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If you are feeling well and the horse is well and training goes well this week then I would probably go to the event being prepared (as always) to withdraw / retire if things don't feel right or if you have any hesitations.

What height was the unaffiliated and what height is the one this weekend?

Based on what you have said I would have concerns about being prepared enough for the 100 course you have entered and would probably be looking to transfer to a lower level / easier course for another confidence giving run.
 

TeamWazz

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The one I fell off at was a decent 100 height but with much more technical stuff than I have even seen at a 100 before. If I had known what the course was like before going I would not have done it. For example, the third fence on course was a log pile, stride to a big drop with a hedge on top, then a stride to a skinny)
Fall was a complete blip completely due to me.

The one this weekend is a BE90 well known as a nice and easy BE90. All single fences that we have jumped before in training. Have watched it being jumped before and nothing at it phases me! My gut instinct is to do this one. I think we are both fine for it and I truly think the fall was a blip.

And the BE100 after isn't for a month - nothing before that and provided XC schooling goes well in the interim I was going to step up because the horse has been up to BE100 before. I will obviously see how this run goes but he's been schooled over Novice XC fences with me! You are right though and I think I might stick at 90 for that run as well!
 

gunnergundog

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All I have today is a bit of a headache (similar to that of banging my head against a door or something - nothing severely painful just annoying!) which is passing as the day goes on.

Sounds like concussion to me, so I would say NO.

I would also want to take my horse cross country schooling to check he hasn't lost any confidence before putting him in a competition environment again as you are both new to it.

Finally, what level were you competing at and what was the mistake that you made that led to the accident? Being aware of what went wrong is the first step to ensuring it doesn't happen again in my opinion. Do you have any video footage?

OK....just seen your post above, cross-posted, but would still say no and get more experience schooling and at 90 - even 80 if necessary.
 
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showpony

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If it was me Id be airing on the side of caution & taking it easy for the next few days & head out somewhere for a confidence giving schooling session for you both.
 

Goldenstar

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I think I would be certainly thinking along the lines of XC schooling with a trainer before competing again.
If the horse has lost a bit of confidence you can't deal with it at an event and you risk causing a much bigger set back.
 

Lolo

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Where's the ODE you're heading to after this one?

After a fall, unless you're very established (not the horse, but the rider), I would avoid doing a tricky course. You can't rebuild foundations easily. My sister is currently spending her summer doing 90cm ODEs on her little horse who would probably do a 1m event happily. But it's not worth the potential for error right now.
 

Archangel

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I would say no. I have had a major prang and felt OK only to be caught out by delayed shock and keeled over. Never underestimate a head injury even if you don't black out, your brain has had a bit of a rattle in its holder (!) and it doesn't much like that.
 

STRIKER

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You know what went wrong you were nervous, which would have relayed to the horse, you have fallen off, you are still in one piece, falling off goes with the sport, sorry i am from the old school where you got back on and went for it, because you only get better by keeping trying, dont be nervous, think positive, what happened yesterday is history its gone, you will do better next time
 

PorkChop

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I would go for a xc school with your instructor and the fact that you are dropping down a level at this weekend's event it should be a nice confidence giving outing. However if your headache does not ease then please rest, your body is telling you it has not healed and I would not be advising doing an event if this were the case.
 

montanna

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I think I would be certainly thinking along the lines of XC schooling with a trainer before competing again.
If the horse has lost a bit of confidence you can't deal with it at an event and you risk causing a much bigger set back.

This. Confidence is the easiest thing to lose and the hardest thing to get back. Don't risk yours or your horses.

There will always be another competition. Book a lesson with your XC trainer at a schooling venue and have a blast :) take the pressure off, it's meant to be fun!
 

smja

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What is your horse like at comps? You said he's been up to 100 before - you need to take into consideration how long ago it was, what his ability is like, how much input he needs from his rider, and whether he's been worried by the stop/fall.

I wouldn't underestimate the gap between a gentle 90 and a stiff 100 - my second event was a fairly technical 90 (relatively big corner, skinny-ditch-skinny, step up to jump, double) and we flew round clear inside the time. My third event was a reasonably tough 100. Horse is bold, loves jumping...got overexcited, took a bit more of a hold than usual (had to be caught by my sister at the end, I couldn't pull up) and inexperienced me didn't ride through it or know enough to call it a day. We did get round, but it scared me. It took me over a year to regain the xc confidence I lost that day.
 

Bantry

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Unfortunately due to bad jockey skills getting very nervous at a hanging log over a massive ditch I fell off in the cross country and was taken to A&E as a precaution.


What I am asking however, is that I have entered our first BE level event this Saturday and wanted advice on whether it is too soon? I am keen, haven't lost any confidence, and feel well enough to do it. It's a much smaller, easier course with only one double and nothing technical. Horse is always very bold, super fit, and the course I've entered is famous for being nice and gentle to get into BE with.

Is it madness to be doing it? I have talked to my mum about it and she says to go with my gut instinct (which is to do it as our next is a BE100 at a fairly infamous 100 level - more like novice - course!) but I wanted to check what anyone else has done, and what they would suggest.

Yes its probably madness and definitely too soon. Nerves made you make a very dangerous error on a 100 course so I'd be saying do at least 2 or 3 90 courses before you go back to 100. I also think a xc schooling session with your instructor over a 90 course should be your next outing before going to an event. Try and pick somewhere that you haven't been before so that there's a challenge of jumping somewhere unfamiliar
 
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