Ready to Get Back Into the Show Ring?

Ready to Get Back Into the Show Ring?

With the country slowly reawakening, the horse world is following suit. With shows, clinics, riding lessons and all the fun stuff canceled, COVID-19 blanketed the equine industry with a tightly knitted sheet of isolation and slowed time down to snail pace. 

Quarantine- a sweet deal if you’re more of an animal person anyways. Good thing a barn full of horses doesn’t count towards your group gathering limit, so if you were an essential worker at a barn- lucky you!

Finally, things are starting to look more normal, lessons are starting back up, clinics are being scheduled and (our favorite) horse shows are commencing! 

There are already a slew of rated, regional and local shows coming up in the next few short weeks. The anticipation is even greater this year than any other. Even though many competitions were canceled from local shows to international competitions, the horse world is prevailing and coming back with strong excitement.

Just a short list of events to attend or live stream to get your horse show fix in: 

ESP June Equitation Day #1, Wellington- June3rd
Texas Shoot Out, Tyler, TX- June 3rd-7th
Mid States Spring, Iowa- June 3rd-7th
World Equestrian Summer I- June 8th-12th
Aiken Summer Classic I- June 10th-14th
Region 9 AHA Sport Horse & Championship Show- June 16th-20th
Ocala Western Dressage Series IV, Ocala- June 20th-21st
State College Classic, State College, PA- June 24th-28th
Camp Fox Lea Summer Series, June 26th- August 4th


This year, there are no excuses: with quarantine, our whole industry coming to a halt and more down time than we all knew what to do with, being ultra-ready for our first summer 2020 show is a must. This is what we’ve all been waiting for after all whether you’re a competitor, owner, groom or just like to go watch; horse shows are a source of entertainment and a chance to show off all of the hard work and training! 

Every show, there is usually something that is forgotten, an extra pair of sneakers, the wrong saddle pad, a hairnet, your horse’s health cert papers (!!) etc.. With all of this time we had to prepare, don’t waste it! Not missing any important equipment or items makes the rest of the show day/weekend less stressful. 

Making a solid horse show checklist will be a huge step in arriving calmly, prepared and having everything go smoothly. There are lots of items to remember, and a bunch you always wish you had thought of! Some people’s show agenda is super simple and only includes the essentials for a minimalistic approach and less stress when planning and some people’s checklists look like a tack shop’s inventory spreadsheet. Whichever side of the spectrum you land on, here is a healthy list for all riders:


  • coggins/ health certificate
  • Required membership information (for rider and horse)
  • Horse’s registration papers (copies)
  • Rule book of governing body

Nutrition (for your horse AND you!) 

Too often riders forget that their own nutrition is just as important as their horse’s. Usually, we chug a large coffee from dunkin and maybe scarf down a sugary donut  after the schooling ring. Dehydration and an empty stomach can easily lead to a deficit of concentration and energy, two things that become dangerous to lack while mounted on a 1,200lb animal.

  • Hay
  • Water
  • Buckets (at least 2- 1 for drinking water and another for bathing)
  • Flavoring and/ or electrolytes
  • Grain (the usual type, brand and amounts)


  • Horse halter and lead
  • Saddle
  • Bridle
  • Extra horse bits (if necessary)
  • Saddle pad(s)
  • Boots (like Majyk Equipe)
  • Girth 
  • Leather hole punch
  • Leather cleaning kit
    • Rags
    • Toothbrush
    • Leather cleaner
    • Leather conditioner
    • Tack sponge
    • Stirrup iron polish
  • Crop and/ or whip (dressage and/ or lunge) if necessary)


  • Grooming supply box and its contents
    • Hard brush
    • Soft brush
    • Hoof pick
    • Horse coat conditioner (such as Carr & Day & Martin)
    • Hoof polish
    • Baby powder
    • Baby oil
    • Mane and tail comb
  • Horse razor and small travel clippers for touch ups


  • Bedding (if needed)
  • Sponge
  • Fly sheet or scrim
  • Fly spray
  • Extra braiding materials and tools (you know those buggers never stay)

First Aid

  • Iodine scrub
  • Gauze
  • Scissors 
  • Thermometer
  • Abscess kit- diaper, duct tape, hoof packing
  • Bute


  • Show coat
  • Riding breeches
  • Show shirt
  • Tall Boots
  • Show helmet (with hair nets and hair ties)
  • Belt 
  • Gloves


  • Extra pair of breeches and riding shirt for schooling before classes start
  • Extra change of clothes to go cheer on your barn mates
  • Extra change of footwear for bathing, grooming, walking the course, etc. 
  • Cash for food stand (and tipping grooms if necessary)
  • Sunscreen
  • Shoe string to tie number to jacket
  • Small box for storing and transporting ribbons

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