Horse Showing

Speedy Horse-Showing Equipment

June 25, 2014

From bits and bats to saddles and spurs, AQHA Professional Horseman Doug Leasor shares his horse tack preferences for his speed-event horses.

Doug Leasor describes the horse tack he uses for speed events. Journal photo.

Doug Leasor describes the horse tack he uses for speed events. Journal photo.

From The American Quarter Horse Journal

AQHA Professional Horseman Doug Leasor, born and raised in Kentucky, has found his niche with Quarter Horses, even in the midst of Thoroughbred country. He got his first pony at 6, upgraded to a Quarter Horse at 12 and has had a passion for speed events ever since. Doug grew up competing in 4-H team roping and barrel racing. Now he trains and rides speed even horses.

Doug shares his equipment preferences for his speed-event horses, from bits to bats and saddles to spurs. Doug’s advice will ensure that you are prepared for your next event. Read the rest of this entry »

A Horse-Showing How-To: The Longe-Line Class

June 18, 2014

Part 2: So, you’ve decided you want to show in the longe-line class. Examine these tips for prepping a yearling to step into the show ring.

Judges inspect a yearling during a longe-line class at the All American Quarter Horse Congress. Larri Jo Starkey photo.

Judges inspect a yearling during a longe-line class at the All American Quarter Horse Congress. Larri Jo Starkey photo.

By Jet Thompson in The American Quarter Horse Journal

If you’re looking for another way to expose your yearling to the show ring, the longe-line class might be for you. Offered by the National Snaffle Bit Association (an AQHA alliance partner), the class enables both western and English prospects a chance to experience the horse-showing scene.

Before diving into the nitty gritty of the longe-line class, review Part 1 to learn the basics of the class. Read the rest of this entry »

A Horse-Showing How-To: The Longe-Line Class

June 11, 2014

In Part 1, discover a new way to expose your yearling to the horse show scene.

The purpose of showing a yearling in a longe-line class is to demonstrate the horse has the movement, manner and conformation to be competitive under saddle. Journal photo.

The purpose of showing a yearling in a longe-line class is to demonstrate the horse has the movement, manner and conformation to be competitive under saddle. Journal photo.

From The American Quarter Horse Journal

At AQHA shows, the only class offered for yearlings is halter. However, many futurities and AQHA alliance partners like the National Snaffle Bit Association offer longe-line classes, which are designed to highlight the western pleasure or English prospect.

Avid horse-show exhibitor Jet Thompson of Kearney, Nebraska, has trained and shown many successful longe-liners. Check out his fine-tuned program for taking yearlings from the pasture to the winners circle. Read the rest of this entry »

The Other Side of Horse Showing

June 4, 2014

Pamela Britton-Baer chronicles the tale of her first experience judging a horse show.

Pamela Britton-Baer stepped into the show ring once again. But this time, she was the judge.

Pamela Britton-Baer stepped into the show ring once again. But this time, she was the judge. Photo courtesy of Pamela Britton-Baer

By Pamela Britton-Baer in The American Quarter Horse Journal

Recently, someone asked me to judge a 4-H horse show.

I’ll admit, I was flattered. Being asked to judge is almost a rite of passage. Someone thought enough of my abilities that they reasoned I could judge little kids.

It brought tears to my eyes.

I said, “Yes,” of course, after making sure my day as a volunteer wasn’t against amateur status rules. Read the rest of this entry »

A Mental Guide to Horse-Showing Success

May 28, 2014

Heed these 12 tips to change your thinking before heading to your next horse show.

A positive attitude can help you ride your way into horse-showing success. Journal photo.

A positive attitude can help you ride your way into horse-showing success. Journal photo.

By Barbra Schulte in The American Quarter Horse Journal

Great coaches in any sport will tell you that getting someone to become mentally stronger is their most challenging task. Teaching physical skills is much simpler because it’s concrete. For example, your riding instructor can easily coach you on seat, leg and hand cues to switch leads. It would be much more difficult and elusive to help you gain the confidence to become an Olympic rider.

Fortunately, Dr. Jim Loehr, of LGE Performance Systems, has outlined concrete mental skills that apply to your riding, just as they would to any professional sport. Work on these 12 steps, just as your technical skills, and you’ll become a stronger horse-show competitor. Read the rest of this entry »

Eight Smart Tips for Hunter Under Saddle

May 21, 2014

Learn how to cruise the ring correctly with this horse-showing advice.

Finding your position in a hunter under saddle class is easy as long as you look to the rail says AQHA Professional Horsewoman Deanna Searles

Finding your position in a hunter under saddle class is easy, as long as you look to the rail, says AQHA Professional Horsewoman Deanna Searles. Journal photo.

By AQHA Professional Horsewoman Deanna Searles

At the 2012 AQHA Select World Championship Show, AQHA Professional Horsewoman Deanna Searles of Scottsdale, Arizona offered tricks and tips for horse showing in the hunter under saddle class. Heed these eight tricks so you can succeed in the show pen: Read the rest of this entry »

Horse-Showing Style: Chaps

May 14, 2014

Identify the dos and don’ts of picking and caring for your next set of chaps.

Choosing chaps for the horse show

Your choice in chaps can make or break the overall appearance you present to the judge at your next horse show. Journal photo.

From The American Quarter Horse Journal

In the overall picture you present to the judge, there’s one major part of your outfit that can make or break your image. Your chaps are a throwback to the cowboy days of protecting your legs from brambles, and they’ve come a long way since the era of the buckaroo. Today, your legwear helps present a smooth and polished position in the saddle.

But without proper fit or style, you’ll be putting yourself at a disadvantage before you ever get to your pattern. Read on to learn how to choose the right chaps, make sure they fit and care for your investment in the cowhide. Read the rest of this entry »

A Break From Horse Showing

May 7, 2014

In Part 2 of this series, discover six more exercises that will keep your show horse fresh and prepare him for a trail ride.

Taking your show horse for a jaunt in the great outdoors is a necessary venture that requires preparation ahead of time

Taking your show horse for a jaunt in the great outdoors is a necessary venture that requires preparation ahead of time. Journal photo.

From The American Quarter Horse Journal

Keep your show horses fresh this show season by venturing into the trails. Last week, accomplished clinician Marty Marten of Berthoud, Colorado, shared three horseback-riding obstacles that will prepare your show horse for a trail ride. Review the first three obstacles and trail-prep fundamentals in Part 1.

In Part 2, Marty offers six more obstacles that will offer your horse-showing star a break from the show ring. Read the rest of this entry »

A Break From Horse Showing

April 30, 2014

In Part 1 of this series, discover three trail-riding obstacles that will keep your show horse fresh.

Training your horse showing star for the trails starts with proper prep at home

Training your horse-showing star for the trails starts with proper prep at home. Journal photo.

From The American Quarter Horse Journal

Don’t be surprised if your world champion who glides over jumps like a gazelle in the show ring refuses to step over a log in the wide-open spaces. It’s a whole different duck.

To a horse, if it looks different, it is different. It’s crucial to keep this in mind and carefully prepare your show horse at home before hitting the trails.

“If you have a horse who’s used to a routine, like a pleasure class, and you head out to do something different, you might find out how well he is not broke,” explains Marty Marten, an accomplished horse clinician. “Surrounded by fences, you can get away with a lot of things, but it’s a new ball game out in the wide open.”

However, he believes there’s nothing better to keep a horse fresh than cattle work or trail riding. Read the rest of this entry »

Safety Tips for Horse Showing Success

April 23, 2014

Whether you’re a horse-show exhibitor or the person in charge, these smart show safety tips can help everyone stay safe at the show.

At a horse show an individuals actions can affect the performance of other exhibitors But if you take certain precautions youll be a positive addition to any horse showing event

At a horse show, an individual’s actions can affect the performance of other exhibitors. But if you take certain precautions, you’ll be a positive addition to any horse-showing event. Journal photo.

From The American Quarter Horse Journal

Although horse showing is typically a fun experience for both horses and competitors, it does not come without risks. The Journal gathered tips for exhibitors and show management to maximize the chances of a safe horse-show experience.

Advice for Exhibitors

As an exhibitor, you have an influence on how smoothly a show runs. Enlist these 11 tips so you can be an exemplary horse-show exhibitor: Read the rest of this entry »

A Horse-Showing How-To: Pleasure Driving

April 16, 2014

Hang up the saddle and try your hand at a different kind of horse sport.

To maximize your chances of a safe pleasure drive, always check that your Quarter Horse is harnessed and hooked to the cart correctly.

To maximize your chances of a safe pleasure drive, always check that your Quarter Horse is harnessed and hooked to the cart correctly. Journal photo.

From The American Quarter Horse Journal

It’s no secret that American Quarter Horses are a versatile breed. Many people think of Quarter Horses as a breed that excels in events like working cow horse and cutting, but they’re also used in dressage, over-fences classes and even pleasure driving. If you’ve considered trying the sport of pleasure driving, brush up on the basic rules and safety tips first so you can succeed in the show ring.

What is the purpose of pleasure driving anyway?

According to SHW610 of the 2014 AQHA Official Handbook, the purpose of this class is to evaluate the horse’s ability and pleasurable attitude while pulling a cart. Additionally, SHW610 offers these three standards:

Read the rest of this entry »

Supportive Horse Show Spouses

April 9, 2014

Learn how you can be a helpful horse-showing hand with these three tips from veteran show spouses.

As a horse show helper taking care of your spouse and the horses are only two parts of the equation Remember to schedule downtime for yourself too Got someone in mind who would make an excellent horse showing hand Share this story with him or her on Facebook

As a horse-show helper, taking care of your spouse and the horses are only two parts of the equation. Remember to schedule downtime for yourself, too. Journal illustration
Got someone in mind who would make an excellent horse-showing hand? Share this story with him or her on Facebook!

From The American Quarter Horse Journal

They are the backbone of the exhibitor. They are the ones who are there for the thrill of victory or the agony of defeat. They ensure that the horse is show-ring ready and the exhibitor is perfect.

They are show spouses. Always behind the scenes, show spouses are usually only recognized by their significant other for their contributions. The exhibitor gets all the glory for a win he wouldn’t necessarily have achieved without that lone person who groomed and exercised the horse and ensured that all the tack was clean and the exhibitor was spotless. Read the rest of this entry »