If it's 4H then it's probably showmanship, it's judged on the handler, the horse is a prop. However, that prop must be presented impeccably turned out, bathed, clipped, banded, hooves polished, not a hair out of place. Posted via Mobile Device
The horse should be solidly built, clean, and well presented in a well fitted halter and appropriate lead. The handler should be neatly groomed and in appropriate attire.
The horse must show complete obedience and attention to the handler. It should walk at the shoulder on a loose shank needing to be neirher hauled or pulled. He should stop, back, and turn on the hind and fore on a loose shank. He should me mannerly with no biting, nudging, pulling, or other disrespectful contact with the handler. He should stand puietly and appropriatelt for his breed(stock-square, gaited- parked).
When being judged the handler should never be between the horse and the judge. The handler should keep ques to a minimum and look alert and happy. Posted via Mobile Device
The registry rule books will give you the nitty gritty about all the show classes. For real world experience, continue to follow this thread for input from folks that have been there. Posted via Mobile Device
Ok, just wondering. :) Complete obedience and immaculate grooming are very important in both halter and showmanship. There is actually an article in a recent Horse Illustrated that is for beginners. Ill see if I can find it for you.
The goal of Halter classes is to judge and place the conformation of the horses in the class. How a horses is built according to its breed standard (ie. Arabian Halter) or its suitability to the discipline (Dressage Sport Horse Prospects). And then are ranked in order of closest to the breed standard to the least.
The grooming aspects are ment to help enhance some parts and minimize others.
For instence you can pull a horses mane and then band it or braid it to emphasis what a nice neck it has, OR to try and "make up" or mask the bad neck it has.
In addition they are judging the movement of the horse as that is specified in the breed discription.
The exception to this, is AQHA halter horses. Those guys smoke crack and those halter horses are crazy wierd with super high pasterns, and bizare conformation ideals that would in the real world render a normal horse lame and unridable in a year.