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LPC: What is Polo? : Players

Description of a Polo Players

"The horse is the first blamed but always the last at fault"

Polo is enjoyed by all ages, primarily because the horse provides the strength and endurance.

Contrary to what a spectator might think, regarding hitting, the most important skill for a polo player is horsemanship.

The rules allow a wide range of speed and skill to coexist in the same game. This allows a new player to be participate in games with minimal impact, so long as the rules are understood. It also allows a rich patron, with limited skills and training, to finance a high-goal team of pros, and be on that team.

A frustration recognized by most beginners is the realization of how much work is needed to develope hitting skills and the amount of experience needed to understand 'the play'. If a weekend training schedule is followed it could take months before the skills necessary to safely participate in a game are developed.

Ask any polo player, it may be addictive, it may stress the relations of family and friends, you may never make it past one-goal, it may send you to the poor house, but polo is worth it.

Players are ranked by a handicap measured in a goal rating, -2 goals on the low end, 10 goals on the high end. Many factors are used in determining a rating a short list is provided below with no particular priority.

It is so rare to reach or exceed a 5-goal rating that the USPA honors those who have by publishing their names in the Yearbook. Only 240 players have reach a rating of 7-goals or better in the 100 year history of the USPA. Only 42 players have ever reached the rating of 10-goals in the USA.

(stats made in 1995)

Most players are content to pursue a rating of 2 or 3 goals. Four 2 goalers would make an 8-goal team, an 8-goal game can be a spectacular game for spectators and players alike. The US Open, which is the superbowl of polo is a 22-26 goal game. A 40 goal game is rarely assembled in the US, maybe 4 time in the last thirty years(?).