prep for first halter show class
theres a local show coming in the beginning June and i would like to go. i have a 8year old 16hh reg'd buckskin quarter horse. hes a real looker. i have never been to a show before let alone a halter class. neither has tigger. what do i do to train tigger for the ring? what sort of things do you do when showing your horse. do i really have to crop his mane because hes a QH? personally i don't like cropped manes... any tips for the ring? what about dress codes? do i have to buy a show halter? he has a nice turquoise blue one that is very nice on him. what about show names? what is a show name anyway lol:) i don't care about being first but would really love to go to it because its like the only show in my area for well a fair while so yeah. and grooming... do i have to clip a bridle path? or do all that fancy shampoo shine stuff to him? what are the rules like if he whinnies to another horse is that bad? lol sorry guys im an amateur. if you could give me any answers and tips that would be awesome:)
what do i do to train tigger for the ring?
Make sure he will stand and set up with his feet squared. Setting up is something you will want to work on ahead of time. You will also have to work on trotting in hand.
what sort of things do you do when showing your horse.
In halter you walk to the judge and when the judge moves out of the way you begin to trot and you will trot around a cone then go line up head to tail and set your horse up. Once you are set up the judge will individually inspect each horse and judge them on there conformation.
do i really have to crop his mane because hes a QH?
I would just do a running braid in his maine. Halter is judging the horses conformation so you want the judge to be able to see your horses neck.
what about dress codes?
For a local show I would just say hat, jeans, boots and long sleeve button down shirt. It doesnt have to be fancy just neat and clean.
do i have to buy a show halter?
I would buy a leather halter and lead. You dont need one with all the silver but leather halters look sharp and neat.
what about show names?
If your horse is registered go with the name on his registration papers. If not then just go with Tigger.
grooming... do i have to clip a bridle path?
yes. clip his muzzle, bridle path and the long hairs around his eyes. You also want to clip the feathers off of his legs. Idealy you want to clean out his ears too but thats not a big deal for a local show.
or do all that fancy shampoo shine stuff to him?
I would give him a bath but it doesnt have to be anything fancy.
if he winnies is that bad?
Halter is judged on the horses conformation, not his behavior. I have seen horses rear up in halter at AQHA shows and still win the class. Although the less behavior problems in the ring the better.
Around here you need to do quarters during inspection...not sure if that is typical outside of showmanship but it's something I had a hard time learning
Prepping for Halter..
Halter is definately a class about presentation and confirmation. Idealy, its supposed to be based on the correct confirmational charactoristics of the horse. Body porportion, stature, weight, shapes and so on.. Now, in the Halter class shows, you are competing against others who have confirmationaly correct horses. It then comes down to presentation when all else is equal. Judges will notice preperation time put into each of the competitors when all else is equal.
Things to keep in mind when wanting to go that extra step in gaining an advantage:
Halters: Yes, a leather halter is going to be required, now one with silver.. I would absolutely. We all know its about the confirmation of the horse, but the idea behind silver, chrome, gold laced halters, is to "bring forward" the head charactoristics of the horse. You want to present an already exsisting wonderful head. Correct jaw structure, nose path, eye set, and mouth correctiveness. If your horses head is not that typical baby doll look, you may want to change the color of the halter, or use less chrome on the face. Is there validity behind this? For all those QH people out there, read up on the famous horse Impressive. He has set foundations for the perfect halter horse. Did you know he lost many halter competitions in his first few years? What changed and made him a winner? It was the halter he was shown in. Impressive was already a wonderfully confirmationally correct horse, but for some reason, judges looked on when he stepped up. The owner switched to an Arabian halter with a darker leather, and Impressive started winning.
Bathing/Prepping: No, you do not have to go out and buy expensive and mindless shampoos and dress formulas. There are some good products for a reasonably low price out there. There are also neat little tips and tricks you can pick up on that you may already have to help bring luster to that coat, polish the whites and make a sharper body image of your halter horse! You will however, want to consider items such as hoof polishes and body shine sprays. You do want that horse to really have a nice appearance!
Mane/Tail: I am not sure what term it was you used, but in many, and I do say many, halter classes, you will end up cutting the mane and "banding" it. The idea behind it is to display the horses neck. Banding is when you have a series of small rubber bands and the mane is collected and rubber banded together in small quarter inch segments, then laid over to one side and cut. In most classes I have participated in, the mane is about 2" long after you cut it. This is the one area to showing I hate. Some of my Wild Haired monsters have some freakish hair long after the show.. little mohawks! LOL!
Fitting: This is something many new halter showmen/women are not aware of. Fitting a halter horse is key to helping enhance your horses appearance and in exhibitting their features in an intensified mannor. Now, be careful with fitting as you will find that if you start climbing the Halter show ladder, that some will use muscle enhancers. I personally stay away from them, and go as natural as possible. But there are exercises and feeds that can make a huge difference!
Show Clothes: In Halter, there is some chrome you may want to wear. use balance. Remember, dress professional for winning, but dont go overboard where the judges eyes are on you and not your horse. I happen to raise a lot of blue eyed babies, so my attire will have blue laced through out it. This draws attention to my horses blue eyes. Theres a little trick! LOL!
Enjoy Halter showing, learn as much as you can from others!
Well I use to lease a really looky pony. If your pony is moving around and not wanting to stand in place bring something that your horse will pay attention to. I brought a lik it and put it in my hand and that distracted my pony from everything else that is "scary" in the ring. For prep when ever i show in halter classes I ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS bodyclip my ponies. Make sure you clip the chinny chin hairs and the muzle. I always use a bridle in halter classes but there are some exceptions. I show my ponies at A shows so I wear the typical show outfit you would wear in english. My long boots and breeches are all clean and polished. My show jack and my show shirt have been ironed and dry cleaned and my helmet is a velvet GPA. Also never forget your leather gloves.
When you are looking for that extra shine on the halter horses, it comes from the inside out. This means good feed and lots of grooming. I dont mean swiping a brush across your horse. We groom for about 20 minutes a day, using a lot of elbow grease. If you do this to your horse he will already have the coat of a seal and need very little of the shine enhancers. We always use good quality, well fitting halters. That is my biggest pet peeve with my clients or students, when the halters dont fit correctly. Also if you really want to be competitive you will need to cut and band his mane. I have heard a lot of people, not just the kids, complain on how they place in a particular class. If you go and really watch the people who are winning you will see that other than the crazy judge we have all gotten a time or two, the ones winning are the ones that put a lot of time and effort in the classes they show in.
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