Horse shows can be very exciting and enjoyable, especially if you prepare adequately for them. Each type of showing gives you the opportunity to demonstrate your skills, and learn something new. To ensure you have the most successful and relaxing show ever, here are some things you need to know about showing horses.
Find the Right Horse
If you’re a first-timer who wishes to compete in a horse showing, you need to find the right horse if you don’t have one already. The horse you choose doesn’t have to be well schooled or have great bloodlines. However, you and your horse need to get along well, the horse should be able to do what it is told, and you should be able to handle his training level. There are numerous good and sane horses available at every price, so finding one that is within your budget shouldn’t be a problem.
Choose The Right Discipline
If you already have a horse but has never competed in any show before, it’s important that you find a discipline that you and your partner are able to do well and enjoy. There are lots of different sports for horses, so do proper research and choose the best sport for him.
Find the Best Trainer
Even if you’ve read every book on the planet about horses, you’ll still need a good trainer to train you and your horse on riding and showing. To get the most out of your trainer, be sure to choose someone who fully understands the discipline you’ve chosen.
Find A Horse Show
Showing your horse won’t be possible if you don’t find a horse show and sign up for it. There are lots of small shows as well as open shows that allow you to compete in different classes without being penalized for having the wrong tack type. Find one and contact the organizer to get to know its details. He or she will be happy to guide you through the entire registration process. You also need to take notice of the documents needed such as insurance and find out the date and time of the showing. Be sure to send your entry fee in time with the required paperwork.
Prepare The Horse And Yourself
Grooming your horse on a daily basis is very important to keep it always looking good, increase the emotional bonding between you two, and improve the health and shine of its coat. However, final grooming is also necessary a day before the showing to make your horse presentable. Ensure the coat is well brushed, spotless and dust-free. The tail and manor should be even and tangle free. The hooves should be well-trimmed, clean and smart.
If you’re going with a personal vehicle, be sure to pack everything you’ll need the night before the show. This includes neat and appropriate clothing, clean equipment, snacks and drinks for yourself, as well as the things your horse will need (water bucket, hay, brushes, tack and other feeds). Most disciplines require that you carry a saddle, girth, saddle pad, reins and bridle. However, you may also need breast collars, double reins among others depending on your discipline, so, make sure you check your specific sport’s rulebook to know the required equipment.
The Day Of The Show
It is normal to feel a bit nervous on the day of the showing. Try to keep busy to combat the anxiety. Be sure to provide your horse with its regular feed and water before heading out. If you want to make a good impression on the judges, arrive for the showing on time.
Once you get there, take the horse off the trailer and tie it in place. Then pick your number from the secretary’s desk, get dressed and have a friend help you pin the number on. Let your horse gets used to its new surroundings by riding around the grounds for some minutes. However, be careful not to overwork or dehydrate yourself or your partner.
Finally, when the announcer calls your number, take a deep breath and enter the ring with a genuine smile on your face. Be polite to the judges and other competitors and enjoy yourself during the showing.
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