equestrian vaulting is a sport where participants preform a gymnastics routine on the back of a trotting horse on a leash. Vaulters compete as individuals, pairs (or pas-de-deux), and teams preforming required moves and choreographed freestyle exercises done to music.
there are six moves you always have to do: the basic seat, the flag, the mill, the scissors and the crowd pleasing stand and flank. each exercise is scored on a scale from 0–10. Horses also receive a score and are judged on the quality of their circular trot.
Some people think vaulting was first popping up in the Roman games with acrobatic displays on cantering horses. Others are all, nah fuck that the roots lie with the bull dancers of ancient Crete. either way, motherfuckers have been performing acrobatic and dance-like movements on the backs of moving horses for more than 2,000 years AT LEAST! The first known .jpg of vaulting is this stone painting, as old as 1500 BC, with Scandinavian riders doing compulsory exercises and choreographed freestyle exercises to music.
this vaulting stuff got pretty popular in the middle ages and Napoleon even created an elite group of soldiers know as Voltigeurs who were trained to do gymnastics on the asses of cavalry horses in order to advance more quickly on the battlefield.
Modern vaulting developed in post-war Germany as part of set of exercises for improving general riding. Cavalry officers introduced the art at the 1920 Olympic Games in Antwerp as “Artistic Riding,” although it was not continued in the Games. I reckon nazis did this for fun.
Vaulting is still much more popular in Europe, where it is still included in dressage training, than it is in other parts of the world, though vaulting is expanding in Australia, Brazil, Canada, and, since 1966, in the United States.
A handful of scattered competitions have been held, European Championships were first held in Ebreichsdorf, Austria in 1984, and the first FEI World Vaulting Championships were held in Bulle, Switzerland in 1986. Vaulting was included in the World Equestrian Games in Stockholm in 1990 and in all subsequent editions of the games. It was demonstrated as an art at the 1996 Atlanta Games and at the 1984 Olympic Games in Los Angeles, USA.
It has been included in the Inter Africa Cup since 2006 This year we celebrated the making of history with the first World Cup Vaulting competition, held in Leipzig on 29–30 April 2011.