Polishing a Showmanship Pattern
I consider showmanship my favorite class to both watch and compete in. I'm the only one at my barn who takes showmanship seriously, and while my trainer taught me the basics, I've been on my own for those little things that enhance an already good pattern.
Problem is, I'd like to go to Regionals this year in showmanship, and everyone else in my region seems to know something that I don't. So, I'm looking for little tips that separate the good from the best.
A little background: I show Arabians on the Arabian circuit in hunt attire (riding clothes, hunt bridle with reins on the neck and leading from a separate lead, with a crop).
Well... i dont do showmanship in the english circuit .I do western showmanship. But a few tricks that i have been told by my trainer who is a well known aqha judge and trainer :
1. SMILE, even if no one else in your class is.. the job in showmanship is to "sell" your perfect horse. You have to look like it is a pleasure to show and be around.
2. make it flow, but dont rush it !
3. when being inspected, check your horses feet and then check the judge.. so glance look at your horses feet and then glance at the judge at every switch you do as they walk around. It shows that your checking your horse and also paying attention to them.
4. Say thank you, or nod when they dismiss you.
5. When done with your pattern, or say you trot off as the last piece of your pattern, look back and nod at the judge, they are waiting for you to "thank them" .
6. keep your arms down . The "tray" is great, but dont hold the tray up high!
7. no matter what! bad set up, anything, SMILE and act like it is no big deal!
8. Make sure your horse is groomed and you are too
9. showsheen showsheen showsheen!!!!
10. HAVE FUN
Search Holly Hover on youtube. She has done some great videos on Showmanship and Horsemanship. She goes so far as to say that she watches the entries before they walk into the ring. Who is wiping the nose and doing last second checks? Show mom or the person showing the horse? I havent shown in YEARS, but the one thing I remember my coach telling me was to act you were being judge the entire time. You never know when the judge is going to glance your way, and you should ALWAYS be watching the judge.
Book on Amazon about Showmanship too
I just ordered it but feedback looks good.
A gal who often won showmanship was surprised she didn't win under one particular judge. Believe it or not, the judge is watching as you enter the ring and a small hesitation can be a placing killer. Riders often sit on their horses by the gate and the horse entering the ring will often hesitate at the idea of leaving his herd.
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