If you watch enough horses jump enough jumps, it’s possible to get quite adept at seeing what’s coming down the pike from a few strides out. Possible outcomes: a clear jump, a refusal, a runout, a rider fall, or a horse fall … what do you think happens next?
A new study involving Nottingham Trent University and co-funded by An Eventful Life asks that question of survey participants. The survey involves a random series of videos of riders approaching cross country jumps, with the ending cut off. The survey-taker is asked to predict the outcome, after which they are shown the full video clip. At the end, the survey-taker is given a score according to how many outcomes they correctly predicted. I’m not sure that all the riders in the videos would agree, but for the survey-takers, it’s a pretty fascinating experiment!
Even better, the study is aimed at improving eventing safety. It utilizes An Eventful Life’s vast video footage of international and grass roots eventing competitions in the UK, Australia and New Zealand as background data for their research. The researchers hope to evaluate the factors that contribute to successful jump clearance and apply their findings in coaching scenarios and to influence improved jump design.
Can you help? Whether you’re an amateur or professional rider, coach, enthusiast, supporter or never even ridden at all, your feedback could be valuable. You do need to be over 18, have reasonable internet connection and 20-25 minutes to spare. You will also be asked to answer some questions regarding your age, gender, eventing experience and occupation.