I’m pissed, about several things right now. So, I simply had to write about it. The world of equestrian sucks, it just does. Two Danish reporters have filmed some riders during their training at the olympics, three riders using Roll Kur. They are now being sued by the Olympic commission because they have put that video on YouTube. It’s tough being a journalist when you get sued for digging up dirt, which I guess is their job. A journalists job has always been to reveal the truth, but not when it comes to top riders using Roll Kur.
I can already feel myself getting carried away, I guess I’d better explain Roll Kur for those of you who don’t know what it is. Roll Kur is when you make the horse put its mouth on its chest. It’s also called hyperflexion, you over stretch the horse’ neck and makes it held its head in this unnatural manner. One of the most famous riders Anky Van Grunsven uses Roll Kur and even holds clinics where she teaches others to ride that like that.
Here’s an example:
It really isn’t pretty. Here’s a link to a Danish page where Roll Kur is discussed, if you watch the video you see Anky talking about her use of hyperflexion in english.
I’m glad to see this being debated in the Danish media, because it was long overdue. Those difficult competitions are no longer on the premise of the horse, and that is simply horrifying. It was supposed to be fun for both horse and rider, but for some reason it always goes wrong when business and pleasure get’s mixed together. And it is a business, a huge business where horses a sold for crazy amounts of money, so of course they have to win competitions no matter the methods.
In the article it also said that the FEI, federation equestrian internationale can’t do anything about the use of Roll Kur. It’s expensive to have competitions so in order to sell enough tickets they need the top-riders to appear. The top-riders who use Roll Kur will only appear if the judges don’t judge against Roll Kur. Well, doesn’t that just make your blood boil? So, we can’t stop this animal cruelty because then we couldn’t sell tickets. Sigh.
Now, I’ll calm myself. Not everybody at the Olympics where using Roll Kur, there are riders whose horses are trained well and are using themselves correctly. But, the silver medal went to someone who does. Not, sure what to say about that other than, unacceptable.
Of course I can see the problem the FEI is in, if they strike down hard on Roll Kur, that might kill the sport. But, I think that they should try. Try to eliminate everybody who doesn’t treat and train their horse properly and see what happens. Hopefully, you’ll see a better competitions and if it makes nobody compete.. Yeah well.. Then people are just stupid..
That was my first issue. Now, on to just how dumb people are in Denmark apparently. At the site of the article there’s a debate regarding Roll Kur, whether or not it’s animal cruelty, I was actually looking forward to reading other people’s opinions, but sadly most was writing by idiots. People who knows nothing about the topic, I believe in the freedom of speech so of course they have the right to write their opinion, but boy it was a tough read.
I will not go through it all, because for example it starts with a girl writing something, then the following comment attacks her spelling. Sigh. But, there was one statement that made me mad, a guy who wrote that the entire equestrian world was all about animal cruelty. Because no matter how you do it, you still force the horse to do things. So, dressage, show jumping, horsemanship, everything was cruel. That makes me mad, I have spent years making my horse happy. She loved trips to the forest, she loved show jumping and she loved me..
I hate it, when people attack people like me. Us who owns horses because we simply love the animal, not to make money on them, not to force them into competition, we just love horses. We are many in Denmark who treat our horses like they were our children. Doing everything in our power to make sure they live a happy life. I hate it when someone attack us. Well, that guys point of view was that every training of any animal was cruel, we should simply let them be. Yeah well, I really hope that he doesn’t own a dog or something, because an untrained dog can be a very dangerous dog. The same for horses.
Does this look like a sad horse?
I was just about to write that Natural Horsemanship never could be cruel to the animal, but I know that it can. Everything can be cruel if it isn’t done correctly. There are many around the world who doesn’t treat their animals correctly, scary many. But, don’t forget that we also are some who does everything in our power to make sure that our animals are happy. In my experience a well-trained animal is a happy animal. Dogs for example, most of them need some boundaries otherwise they go crazy, I’ve seen many examples of it and some has ended violently. Horses are huge animals who can be very dangerous if they aren’t trained properly. I will not write about other kinds of animals, because I only know about dogs and horses.
So, I guess my point is that we should be kind to our animals. They do their best to make us happy constantly, so at least we owe them to do our best. My old dog Spot was a Border Collie and he was my best friend when I was a kid, he would have jumped through fire for me, how many people would do that? When he died my horse Lise slowly became my best friend. We had a rough start, she had many skeletons in her closet and was a very nervous horse. But, after a few years of patience she became the most trusting horse I could ever imagine.. A friendship between a human and an animal can be so strong and beautiful, I’m feel sad for those who doesn’t treat their animal properly because they are missing out on a lot.