Floppy, loose show number
When you sign in at the horse show, you receive a number. Some shows will give you 1, and it is placed on your back or bridle. Other shows give you 2, and you put them on either side of your pad. If the show number has a design around the edge or a lot of white space around the number, cut it down to a nice tidy size. Then, attach it with safety pins on the sides, instead of top and bottom. This will keep the number down where the judge can see it. There are also pads that have a space for your number.
Stuff Stuck In The Mane Or Tail
Grooming is a big part of going to a horse show, so don’t let your hard work be wasted by not thoroughly grooming the tail. Handpick any shavings, hay or grass stuck in there. Then a good brush through will get the small stuff. In a class like Showmanship, having shavings in the tail can affect your placings!
Ill Fitting Show Halter
This can go for any piece of tack, but I most commonly see show halters that don’t fit. Poorly fitted halter makes your horse’s head look longer than it should, and will give you less control. If the halter is adjusted all the way up and it is still too big, you will need to get a smaller halter before the next show. Always use the strap keepers to make everything secure and tidy.
Hat Keeps Falling Off
If your hat will not stay on during your class due to fit, slick hair or the wind, you need to pin it! Use a bobby pin and slide it in between the liner band and the hat material and then catch some hair in the other side of the pin.
If your hairstyle won’t hold bobby pins then you can use double sided tape, on the liner band to help stick it to your head, or spray some hair spray on the inside and put it on before it dries.
Bit Attached Wrong
Bits can be confusing. And if you put your usual bit on a show bridle and are not sure how to attach it, look for help! Having your bit attached wrong could be a serious safety concern, and it isn’t going to work properly. You can always look up a youtube video or ask someone at the show for help.
Not Being Ready For Your Class
It is not the responsibility of the show management or judge to hold the show up if you are not ready to go. Get to the show in plenty of time, and be ready at the gate for your class. If you are not going to make it, or you are deciding to scratch your class, go tell someone at the gate, so they aren’t calling your name or holding the gate needlessly.
At some competitions, what your hair looks like doesn’t really matter. However, if you are showing in classes like Showmanship, Horsemanship, Western Pleasure, Equitation, Hunter Under Saddle or Hunter Over Fences, you want to have your hair tidy. Each class has their preferred look, but the important part is that it isn’t sticking out everywhere and not covering your show number.