Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Northern California
Since pulling the mane is not an option, and I don't have any ideas other than the scallop braid, a running braid (or french braid), or a web or net braid, I would actually suggest not braiding.
If the mane is not ungodly long, having the horses mane free can come in handy as a "oh crap" grab strap. If the horse has a really long mane, this could prevent an issue with getting tangled up in the reins and/or your hands.
For Dressage the scallop braid would probably be your best bet. For cross country and show jumping, I would leave upbraided (if its allowed) or perhaps start a web braid and let the rest of the mane lay naturally (see picture below) That way, the mane is out of the way and if your horse has a thin mane...this should be completely doable.
"Horses are the best medicine for the soul"