Horse Showing

Making Horse Shows Fun for Kids

May 4, 2016

How to help youth succeed in the horse-showing ring while having a great time.

Nothing goes together better than kids and horses. Journal photo

Showing horses is more than just placings. Teaching kids how to win and lose is all a part of the passion that drives them to keep going. Journal photo

By AQHA Professional Horseman Tom McBeath with Jody Reynolds

AQHA Professional Horseman Tom McBeath of Union, Mississippi, makes sure that showing is both fun and educational for youth. He sees to it that his youth riders get the most out of their horse show experiences, because he believes firmly in the benefits of youth showing. It builds character, confidence, leadership, responsibility, persistence and countless other life skills. Tom offers some tips on how to help kids succeed in their show ring endeavors. Read the rest of this entry »

Clipping For Success

April 20, 2016

A successful ride in the horse-show ring starts with a clean and comfortable horse.

clipping your horses bridle path

Randy Jacobs can guide you on how to slough off that winter coat for a great impression in the show ring, and your horse’s overall comfort. Photo by Christine Hamilton.

From AQHA Corporate Partner, Farnam.

A hundred years ago when horses were routinely used for work, a horse in winter was expected to have a fuzzy coat. It might take longer to cool him out after working, but that was simply part of a horseman’s duties.

Today, there are more horses in America than ever before and their primary use is recreation and sport – not work. When a winter coat interferes with work or detracts from appearance, out come the clippers. Keeping horses clipped and blanketed—or blanketing to prevent a winter coat from growing in the first place—is common. Read the rest of this entry »

Looking Leggy

April 6, 2016

Follow these horse-showing tips to set your halter horse’s front legs just right.

AQHA Professional Horsewoman Kathy Smallwood demonstrates the “walking while trotting” technique at the AQHA World Championship Show. Journal photo.

AQHA Professional Horsewoman Kathy Smallwood modifies her strategies based on each horse’s conformation individually. Journal photo.

From The American Quarter Horse Journal

AQHA Professional Horsewoman Kathy Smallwood of Pilot Point, Texas, says to stand up your halter horse based on his conformation as an individual.

Honestly appraising your horse’s assets and faults will help you do a better job of positioning him so that he looks his best to the judge. Here’s how to set the front legs: Read the rest of this entry »

Practice Makes Perfect

March 23, 2016

Want to fine-tune your horse and yourself before the big event? Put on a practice horse show!

Training horses requires durable and comfortable boots. Journal photo

Calm those pre-horse-show jitters and go into the ring with confidence by practicing before hand. Journal photo

From The American Quarter Horse Journal, with contributions from Kristin Syverson

It can be tough, especially in this economy, to afford all the big-time shows you want.

To get the most for your money, you probably want to find a way to fine-tune your performance before you hit the circuit. If you need a chance to knock off your winter rust, head to a practice show. Read the rest of this entry »

Penny Wise

March 2, 2016

Tips to keep your horse-showing costs from breaking the bank.

aqha world show jumping

Get the most bang for your showing buck with these tips form the American Quarter Horse Journal. KC Montgomery Photo

From The American Quarter Horse Journal

The Shows

When a trainer takes a group of youths or amateurs to a big show, very little time is spent in the hotel room, so bunking together is a painless way to save money, says AQHA Professional Horsewoman Nancy Cahill. “We’re very communal.” Read the rest of this entry »

Nervous? Me?

February 17, 2016

Tips for managing your pre-horse showing jitters.

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Tips from “America’s Horse” give you a leg-up to success in the show ring despite your nerves. Photo courtesy of the American Quarter Horse Journal.

From America’s Horse

The amount of pressure you perform best under varies from person to person.

When your nervousness exceeds your optimum levels, you lose focus and your skills suffer. Here are a few ways to manage that anxiety you feel before an event. Read the rest of this entry »

Meet Your Equestrian Fitness Goals

February 3, 2016

Reach your New Year’s resolution of becoming a stronger rider.

Have you vowed that 2016 is the year you become a better, stronger, more-fit rider? AQHA and The American Quarter Horse Journal have you covered with great tips for achieving your New Year’s resolutions.

With AQHA’s excellent resources from the industry’s finest equestrian fitness experts, you can conquer your 2016 riding goals.

Take a look at our great resources for better fitness, in and out of the saddle.

Read the rest of this entry »

Avoid Back to the Saddle Soreness

January 20, 2016

Perform these exercises to stay in horse-showing shape, even when you can’t ride your horse.

By Emily J. Harrington with The American Quarter Horse Association

showing1In some places, the winter weather becomes so inclement that horse owners are unable to ride for weeks, maybe months, so how do you stay in shape when you’re unable to ride?

AQHA world champion and certified professional trainer Emily Harrington of Aubrey, Texas, explains what riders should focus on when staying in shape during the off-season.

Read the rest of this entry »

Groom to Win for the Horse-Showing Ring

January 6, 2016

These tips will give your horse the ultimate show-ring shine.

Use these tips to have your horse looking sleek and shiny no matter what your discipline. Journal photo

Use these tips to have your horse looking sleek and shiny no matter what your discipline. Journal photo

From AQHA Corporate Partner Farnam with contributions from Kristin Syverson

Want to prove you are a serious competitor? Then enter the ring with a serious shine. Not only does meticulous grooming demonstrate good horsemanship, but it also creates a lasting impression in the judge’s mind. Set yourself apart from the crowd with these tips.

Manage That Mane

To shorten your horse’s mane, do not cut it with scissors. The proper way to shorten is by pulling and thinning the mane by hand. Horses are not as sensitive about this as humans. However, if too many hairs are jerked out at once, the horse will become irritated. Read the rest of this entry »

Horse-Showing Goals for the New Year

December 7, 2015

We asked you to tell us your horse-showing goals for the new year. Here’s what you had to say.

Whether your ambitions are big or small, setting goals for you and your horse is a great way to start the upcoming show season. Photo courtesy of Tagxego

Whether your ambitions are big or small, setting goals for you and your horse is a great way to start the upcoming show season. Photo courtesy of Tagxego

From The American Quarter Horse Journal

The turn of the year means a new show season is approaching. While many see the New Year as a chance to start fresh, it can actually be an opportunity to continue growing and build off the hard work you put in last year.

Setting goals is a fantastic way to look ahead to the end of 2015 and envision where you would like to see yourself and your horse. Maybe you really Read the rest of this entry »

Backing Your Horse Like a Champ

November 18, 2015

Ask your horse to back up lightly and willingly with the halter for a positive horse-showing experience.

Margaret Bellville and GPF Legal Version perform the backing portion of their showmanship pattern at the Bayer Select AQHA World Championship Show.

Margaret Bellville and GPF Legal Version perform the backing portion of their showmanship pattern at the 2008 Select World Championship Show.

Backing your horse is a common maneuver in showmanship classes, so it’s important to do it correctly and seemingly effortlessly.

AQHA’s Fundamentals of Horsemanship books offer this advice. Read the rest of this entry »

It’s Showtime!

November 4, 2015

Tips for looking your personal best in the horse-showing arena.

A polished appearance can help you show off your horse.

A polished appearance can help you show off your horse.

Although judges are looking for the best horses and horsemen in a class, a polished and professional look completes a fine performance in the show ring like good china completes a gourmet meal.

AQHA Professional Horseman Holly Hover; Bobbi Pullin, wife of AQHA Professional Horseman Doug Pullin; and exhibitor Natalie Unger, a cosmetologist by trade, give their advice help you look your best the next time you step into the ring. Read the rest of this entry »