Horse Showing

Valley Ridge Farm
Horse Showing and Coaching

Competition in horse shows is a wonderful way to exhibit all of the hard work you and your horse have put into your training, as well as meeting and enjoying the company of great people. We offer professional training, show coaching, and comprehensive horsemanship programs at Valley Ridge Farm. If you are approaching your first show, you may have some concerns during this exciting time or you may feel a bit intimidated. It is important to remember that even the most experienced riders were once beginners, too.

If you are interested in learning more about training and showing, please contact Valley Ridge Farm at: 304-864-2267.

Showing In the Western PA and USEF A-Rated Circuits

Valley Ridge Farm shows in the local Western Pennsylvania Circuit, as well as the United States Equestrian Foundation’s A-rated Circuit showing in Ohio, Pennsylvania, Kentucky, Maryland, Virginia and Ocala, Florida.

How to Prepare For and Have a Rewarding Show Experience

The best way to alleviate concerns and be ready for your show is to be as prepared as possible. Review the following information to have the most rewarding show experience.

“When should my horse and I be ready?”

You and your horse should be completely ready two classes ahead of your class, depending on how much warm up your horse needs. (You should ask before the day starts).

Remember, classes are often cancelled during the day. Listen to the announcements and adjust your preparations accordingly.

“What do I do to get my horse ready?”

In a nutshell, wash your horse and clean your tack the night before your classes. After schooling, wipe tack again. Before your class, spot clean, brush your horse, and detangle the mane and tail, groom completely – no dirt or stains, polish their feet, tack them up, and make sure you remembered to dress yourself (know where your number is), warm up your horse and win the class! What could be easier?

-Always keep in mind that your horse is a living being. He has needs. Give him plenty of quiet time and make sure he always has fresh water. Check on him to be sure he is eating his hay and grain. This way he will be ready to perform for you.

-If you are one of the younger riders, you will have a groom or helper to get your horse ready. Once you arrive at the horse show you will find your group and trainer and find out where and when you need to get ready. There is a lot of waiting that will happen as the show can go faster or slower than anticipated.

– Bring a chair, drinks and snacks. There is usually a food vendor, but it always nice to have your own stuff.

– Bring a check or credit card with you. All fees are due the day of the show.

“How am I expected to behave at shows?”

You are a representative of Valley Ridge Farm, Inc., and as such, you are expected to refrain from loud, disruptive, and/or offensive behavior. This means no horseplay, no profanity, no fighting, no temper tantrums, no arguing, etc. You are expected to say please and thank you. You will treat your horse, your parents, your friends, your trainer, and your groom with respect.

-Do not take out your frustration on your horse. Riders of Valley Ridge Farm will not be seen abusing their horses! You will not jerk on your horse’s mouth or beat him with your crop. Pat your horse after every ride with a smile on your face. This shows all other exhibitors that excellent horse people train at Valley Ridge Farm.

Please review the “Basic Show Etiquette” page.

Remember: Grooms are brought to shows to assist you with certain tasks so you will have plenty of energy to show your horse. Treat them with respect.

What to Pack For the Show

Packing for the School Horses

You are required to pack your own trunk for the show.

If you are sharing your horse with another person, keep in mind that you will both be working out of the same trunk. You need to have room in your trunk for all of these items.

1. Saddle that you ride in (must be clean)
2. Girth, Bridle and/or Martingale (clean), boots if needed
3. Lead rope, leather halter and extra nylon halter
4. Two schooling Pads (clean)
5. One Show Pad (clean)
6. Bounce Pad or Riser, if needed
7. Curry comb, brushes, hoof pick, towels and rags
8. Cooler and/or anti-sweat sheet, stable blanket if cool outside
9. Treats for your horse

It is MANDATORY that all your equipment be in your trunk at all times. It is DANGEROUS if stuff is left lying around and it also looks bad!!

Packing for the Rider

1. Show Clothes (coat, breeches/jods, shirt, belt, socks, and gloves) in a hang up garment bag
2. Boots (cleaned and polished)
3. Boot Polish (if your boots need a touch up)
4. Rain coat and hat cover
5. Black show crop/spurs (if needed)
6. Hair nets, Bobbie pins and hair bands
7. Polo shirts for schooling and half chaps
8. Extra show clothes, if you have them, in case you get dirty.
9. Tide stick, Band-Aids, Neosporin, hand sanitizer

Remember: We are here to take pride in ourselves and our animals!!!