What's the best advice you have for my first show? - The Horse Forum
  • 1 Post By Idlepastures
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 7 Old 10-02-2011, 08:55 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Arizona, US
Posts: 48
• Horses: 1
What's the best advice you have for my first show?

I've never competed out of all the years I have ridden. Nope not one single time. Now I have the opportunity after working my butt off and it's a bittersweet moment. Obviously I want to do my best!

What's the best advice you could possibly give anyone on their first show?
What do you believe will help me succeed?

Thank you everyone!
laughing is offline  
Sponsored Links
post #2 of 7 Old 10-02-2011, 08:59 PM
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Eastern Ontario
Posts: 1,166
• Horses: 3
Always smile, don't look like you're in pain, because the judges will place you accordingly!
BornToRun is offline  
post #3 of 7 Old 10-02-2011, 09:00 PM
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Central Texas
Posts: 436
• Horses: 4
Smile, wide, like you have the biggest secret to keep.

Have fun, like you're skipping school, and don't want to get caught.

No matter where you place, firmly believe you did your best, and you can only get better. Do not beat yourself up for placing 2nd or last. Someone wins, someone looses, and the good losers only become better people.

Oh, and find something special, that means something to you (my horse has a cross on his saddle that my dad bought for me. It was a necklace charm. And I also have a small coin that says 'daughter' on it, and its in a small jewelry pouch with the cross.) and carry it with you.
tinyliny likes this.

~*~Never approach a bull from the front, a horse from the rear or a fool from any direction. - Cowboy saying~*~
Idlepastures is offline  
post #4 of 7 Old 10-02-2011, 09:27 PM
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: waynesboro GA
Posts: 496
• Horses: 3
Relaxe dont think about the judge or the fact you are competing. Just pretend you are in a lesson. Have fun.

live for the moment.
raywonk is offline  
post #5 of 7 Old 10-02-2011, 10:36 PM
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Connecticut
Posts: 8,157
• Horses: 0
Have fun...plain and simple.

You just have to see your distance...you don't have to like it.
MyBoyPuck is offline  
post #6 of 7 Old 10-03-2011, 12:31 AM
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Good Ol' USA
Posts: 185
• Horses: 2
Don't freak out when the judge looks at you! If your horse acts up or you mess up just keep smiling, you never the know the judge may have missed it if he wasn't looking at you. Relax and try not to be too nervous because your horse will sense your uneasiness and react to it. JUST HAVE FUN!!! Good luck :)
stingerscricket is offline  
post #7 of 7 Old 10-03-2011, 01:05 AM
Green Broke
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Queensland, Australia.
Posts: 4,488
• Horses: 1
I remember two years ago when I competed at my first show. No one can really tell you how to prepare for your first show. I can suggest that you compete at a lower level than you do train at home. This makes it a lot less scary and confronting for you and your horse - if you jump, the jumps seem loads bigger when you go out for the first time or everyone seems so much better than you.

Try and stay relaxed and make your goals for the day to be small - even if you make your goal just to have fun. Is it your horses first time competing as well? If so, he's going to be nervous as well. Try and keep yourself more relaxed so that your horse thinks 'There's nothing to be worried about, I can feel my owner being relaxed on my back!!'. Calm rider = Calm horse = A lot more fun. Just remember, it's your first show. Don't expect to go out and have a performance. Don't expect too much from yourself or your horse. We all make mistakes, specially at our first shows. I got eliminated at my second jump in one of my first show jumping rounds..

Be organised with your packing - write lists, tick things off. The worst thing is arriving and discovering you haven't packed something important. My coach told me a story about how one of her students ended up forgetting their helmet. I wrote list after list and packed everything. Though, at the same time - be careful not to over pack. I had my car and trailer packed two days before, trailer filled with feed the day before and everything ready to just load my horse into the trailer the next day.

Arrive early - it is better to be early than running late. The worst thing you can do is not have time to warm up your horse correctly and then have him stiff or being jumpy at things which they wouldn't have been if they were warmed up correctly and allowed to adjust to their environment. If you need to, hop on and lunge your horse before you get on and ride. Better for your horse to get their nerves out before you jump on.

Check out where you will be competing - know where you need to be and at what time. Have a look at what the grounds look like - are they wet, really dry, deep? Knowing the ground your about to ride on helps so much. If your doing jumping, your usually allowed to walk the course, use this to your advantage. Look around the ring - is there anything your horse could spook at? One show I went to, there was a giant jumping castle beside the show ring. I spent an hour standing beside it with my horse before the scary colors and children were not a problem too him.

Make sure your horse is clean - before show day. I've seen people washing muddy horses the day of the show. I stable, rug and wrap legs the night before. I don't want to have to be rushing around getting a massive chunk out of his mane. If you have to plait or braid and your not use to it - do it the night before, you will be shocked to find out how long it will take if you mess up and have to redo it.

Make sure you give your horse water. Egh, it frustrates me. I go to shows and see horses which don't have ANY water around them. I make sure my horse has a bucket filled with fresh water. If your horse is fussy about the water it drinks, consider taking a tank from home OR add products such as Poweraid to it.

- Here's a little tip. Bring a friend. I cannot express how good this is for you. I am lucky enough to have a groom with me at all my shows. Therefore, just before I get on to warm up. I'm not having to worry about making sure my horse isn't causing trouble when I have to leave him to get changed into my show gear, if I need to make a last minute trip to watch the show ring - I can leave my horse with my groom to be walked around and relaxed. It's so much less stressful to have someone else to give you a hand.

FINALLY - Don't expect the world. Don't expect to win, you end up disappointed. Ask little goals from your horse, that you are sure you can compete. Go out and have fun, goodluck. Also, don't be intimidated by the judges, I'm sure they've seen a lot worse than anything you could mess up :)

Sir Success. Eventer.
2000 - 2013,

Last edited by ChingazMyBoy; 10-03-2011 at 01:09 AM.
ChingazMyBoy is offline  

Quick Reply

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the The Horse Forum forums, you must first register.

Already have a Horse Forum account?
Members are allowed only one account per person at the Horse Forum, so if you've made an account here in the past you'll need to continue using that account. Please do not create a new account or you may lose access to the Horse Forum. If you need help recovering your existing account, please Contact Us. We'll be glad to help!

New to the Horse Forum?
Please choose a username you will be satisfied with using for the duration of your membership at the Horse Forum. We do not change members' usernames upon request because that would make it difficult for everyone to keep track of who is who on the forum. For that reason, please do not incorporate your horse's name into your username so that you are not stuck with a username related to a horse you may no longer have some day, or use any other username you may no longer identify with or care for in the future.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.

Old Thread Warning
This thread is more than 90 days old. When a thread is this old, it is often better to start a new thread rather than post to it. However, If you feel you have something of value to add to this particular thread, you can do so by checking the box below before submitting your post.

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
First Show- Need Advice, Tips, Etc! Cinder Horse Grooming 4 05-14-2011 08:59 AM
show advice :) Rodeo Pro Horse Grooming 11 12-05-2010 01:21 PM
First Show - Could do with some advice. (: Smarby Horse Showmanship 2 05-27-2010 04:18 AM
First Show Advice. ChingazMyBoy Horse Shows 13 10-25-2009 08:52 AM
H/J Show advice 3days3ways English Riding 6 07-06-2008 09:04 PM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome