Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Popular Horse Show Classes

Showing is something I love to do! I know when I first started showing horses I had no idea what the classes entailed or what type of riding I would be doing in them. I will share with you what the popular ones you will find mean and what you can expect before you enter the show ring.

1. Halter/Showmanship
Halter and showmanship are a little different from the other ones I will be mentioning later in this post, but they both are very popular and will be at almost every show you attend. Halter is for displaying your horse’s build, coloring, how well it stands, and its confirmation. The goal is to have your horse looking its best, while standing perfectly square as the judge walks around and examines the horse with you leading on the ground. Showmanship is very similar, but instead you’re leading the horse in a pattern and having it move in sync with you.

2. Jumping
This class is self-explanatory. You are riding in English attire and tack for this class and the judge evaluates how well you get through the jumping course without knocking any jumps down.

3. Barrel Racing
This class is also well known and very popular in rodeos and western shows. This is a speed event where it is very important to get around all three barrels in the shortest amount of time.  

4. Dressage
A form of English riding where the goal is to go through a pattern and with a lot of speed and direction changes, but using as little number of verbal cues and very smooth transitions between each change.

5. Trail
Trail is very much like going through an obstacle course, except that you are riding the horse. You will be asked to do tasks such as open a mail box, maneuver through a gate, walk over poles, etc. This is a very good class to move up to if you want your horse to be less spooky and listen to directions.

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