PonyApp Pro-Tips with Grand Prix Show Jumper Quentin Judge
Just like professional athletes in any sport, you have to learn from past experiences and consistently be inspecting your own performances to improve your game. When it comes to riding horses, it’s no different.
Football players watch game tapes. Golfers review videos of their swings. For equestrians, there are countless ways you can learn from your own rides by re-watching your rounds and finding specific things you can improve on for next time — regardless of the results of a class.
Whether you are an Olympic-level rider or just starting out, it is important to make sure you are just as much mentally up for the challenge as you and your horse are physically prepared to jump the next course.
We sat down with 5* Grand Prix rider and Double H Farm trainer Quentin Judge to learn a bit more about what type of mental preparation it takes to be a top rider in the sport.
The “Pre-Ride Mental Prep”
Before a big class, do you have a routine to mentally prepare? If so, can you tell us a bit about it?
“I try to vizualize what I want my round to look like, and then think critically about riding a calm, confident round and not worry about the result.” — Quentin Judge
Before a big class I try to find a few minutes to myself to set goals and focus on what I am trying to accomplish in that day.
For me, I often put too much emphasis on a “big” class and find myself riding with too much pressure because of it, so if anything, my end goal for bigger classes is to ride them as positively as I do walking into smaller classes.
The “Post-Ride and Analyze”
After competing, is there anything you do that helps you to learn from your round?
“Recording my rounds to be able to reference them to see what we did well and what we need to work on is a critical part of our routine.” — Quentin Judge