Equitation for pentathalon

I realize that jumping is easier & more objective to judge than equitation, but after the pentathalon disasters, why don’t they lower the fence height & do an equitation course?
It would force them to spend some time on this aspect of their sport to develop some basic competency rather than just clinging like a burr & hoping they get around on a prayer.
Not to mention that it would be alot easier on the horses involved.


It’s subjective and currently, this sport has no subjective angle to it.


There is already change in process. New welfare rules and training for coaches, with greater emphasis on riding skills, lower fences and shorter course for Paris 2024.


This is great news. How did you find out about it?

1 Like

Now I suppose we wait and see if they put their money where their mouth is.


Horse & Hound, reported this week. The entire Modern Pentathlon will only take 90 minutes so something has to change for Paris 2024.

Per person?
I mean, that is not even possible I do not think.
It probably takes that long to get thru all the swimming with so many competitors.
It certainly takes that long to get thru the horse part.

Wow. If they keep the same five disciplines, that seems impossible, unless the swimming and running are changed to sprints. I will be interested to see what the powers that be ultimately decide.

1 Like

The swimming is only 200 meters to begin with; it doesn’t really take very long.

So I agree - 90 minutes per person?

How long does the fencing take? I would think that would take far longer than the swimming.

1 Like

Just that many people doing anything is going to take more than 90 minutes.

If it is a total time of all sports added up, per person, not counting down time or logistics time associated with stuff like picking the horses, etc… that is different.

Don’t think it’s possible, the running and shooting was 30mins at least alone.

I’ll explain how it works in the ‘new format’.

BTW, it’s PENTATHLON not pentathalon. Don’t know why COTH can’t get that right. It’d be like Dressausage or Huntars or Eventating. Respect, please.

The fencing is held the day before. All competition fence each other in round robin.

Next day starts with riding. You warm up and ride the showjumping course. Similar to now.

Then you have an utterly pointless and stupid fencing ‘bonus’ round. This is mainly a time-waster in which you have to change from riding clothes to fencing clothes and fence for a few points that mean absolutely nothing. Most athletes will fence for 45 - 90 seconds total. It takes far longer to make the clothing change.

Then you swim 200m. There’s supposed to be a portable pool on hand, which is a boondoggle of an expense for organizers. A portable pool for 20 minutes use is not a good ROI and a dealbreaker for venues hoping to host a World Cup or Championship.

Then the laser run. I don’t think distances have been agreed on yet. Similar to before.

The difference at the World Cup/Championships level is that there’ll be riding in the qualifying/semi-final rounds, which I think is a good thing. It helps eliminate the mindset of trying to get to the final in a semi with no riding and then just trying to cling to the horse and get around. It means that you can’t make a final without having a full set of pentathlon skills, which wasn’t the case before.

This format will be tested out this year at the WC level. Will be interesting and probably something of a sh*tshow at first. One thing to note is that the athletes will have to spend a considerable amount of that 90 minutes changing clothes and warming up. Assuming that the athletes won’t be changing out in the open, this will not be terribly exciting for the spectators. (Most of the spectators are friends and family anyway.)

But please realize that pentathlon has made some brilliant adaptations in the past. The laser run - combined running and shooting - is so much better than the old static shoot and meaningless run. All the events in one day is better than the events over 5 days. This new format is promising because there’s opportunity for all athletes to ride and that can’t help but change the standard to value riding.


LOL wasted energy being upset by that. It’s not really a lack of respect. People say “tri-ath-alon” too, so they think it is spelled that way. And why wouldn’t they? They don’t compete in the events, so they don’t notice.

But I really like Dressausage.


People spell all kinds of things wrong all the time. (Me, I spell things wrong all the time.) Respect has nothing to do with it.


Perhaps when PENTATHLON starts respecting the animals it abuses on the regular, COTH might start giving a rat’s about how to spell it. Respect, please.

And to put a finer point on it, I’m damned sure that COTH knows how to spell it. You’re being a jerk towards one person for a spelling error, for Pate’s sake.


Wow. That’s quite uncalled for. I remember when people on the forum had a sense of humor.

Is ‘for Pate’s sake’ another spelling error? Or did you maybe mean ‘pâté’?

Really thin-skinned humorless types on this forum these days. No one even bothers to comment on the substance of what I’m saying - everyone just piles on my meant-with-humor comment about the persistent yet irritating misspelling of pentathlon.


Pate - Pete JOKE!!! But, yes, there are really thin-skinned humourless types on the forum these days who wouldn’t get such silliness.

The only thing not called for was having a temper tantrum over a particular poster’s spelling error. That was rude.

No-one bothers to comment on your blethering because the sport has been shown to be a disaster in the riding component and all we’re hearing is a 20-something boy (and not just you, the whole UIPM) yelling “I can SAVE it!” as they are already breaking a collarbone falling off their minibike.

Not one of us is saying ditch the entire sport. We’re not even (yet) saying to ditch the horse component altogether, but pathetic attempts to say oh, it’s going to change for Paris because, um … <small things that won’t actually fix anything in the gigantic way they need to be fixed> isn’t quite cutting it.

If the running and shooting can be brought into the present day for the sake of making it more interesting, then surely the horse component can be launched into the present day where horse welfare comes first and foremost instead of not even an afterthought and those very afterthought rules are not even enforced.


I didn’t have a temper tantrum. You’re the one creating drama.

I don’t think you understand that I’ve been advocating for horse welfare and rider safety from within the sport of modern pentathlon for YEARS.

At the Pan Am Games in 2015, I insisted that we not allow riders to remount after horse falls and institute other safety measures. This was counter to UIPM rules. The UIPM didn’t like it but as organizers, we insisted. @Jealoushe was there and can tell you all about it.

I wrote rule changes for horse/rider welfare and they were submitted on behalf of an NF. This is the recognized process for changing rules, as with USEF or FEI. One minor change passed, all the important ones, like about horse falls, basically got no support from the member federations.

In May of this year, I started a one-person Instagram campaign to try to prevent another Olympic debacle. Over 300,000 people have watched and shared my videos.

So please don’t yell at me about horse abuse in the sport. I don’t abuse horses. Neither do the vast majority of pentathletes. The rules are abusive to the horses and punitive to the athletes. And, as I’ve been saying for years, this needs to change.


And yet, you and all the pentathletes that don’t abuse horses continue to support all 5 components of the sport.

It’s 2021, massive outrage is required whether you like or not. Let my posts and the other outraged posters posts aggravate you to the point of figuring out something that will get substantial changes made.

Crazy ideas that might have substance and cause meaningful change:

  • unite horse owners in host countries to boycott the loan of horses
  • unite athletes to boycott the horse component at key events coming up in the near future
  • approach the press with the story of how the UIPM refuses to make changes to their abusive rules

Thank you. That was very interesting and informative. Maybe MP should be looking at the success of the Triathlon discipline in the Olympics since that also involves very speedy changes of clothing during a competition. There is no particular requirement to have riders wear traditional costume when leggings, safe footwear and a helmet would do the job.