As the clocks go forward this month, we pose the question ‘Are you competition ready?’ Here are our top 5 tips for ensuring that you and your horse are set for the busy season ahead.
Plaits With Perfection
Practice really does make perfect, and the same applies to your turn out skills. Quarter marks and plaits are two areas you can practice at home to ensure they are up to scratch on competition day. Plaiting practice at the yard is also especially useful for horses that anticipate and get excited and agitated at the prospect of a party. By doing a few test runs, you should find your horse is a little less apprehensive enabling you to get the job done in less time and more safely!
Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow
Even if your horse isn’t hairy, you may wish to trim up his legs or pull his mane or tail. Doing these jobs over time as opposed to one big hair removal session should mean that your horse is more willing to let you near his mane and tail when it comes to plaiting or tail bandaging. Brushing your horse’s tail and mane regularly and teasing out knots will also mean you keep it in the best condition. Our Tail and Mane T-Brush features two heads: one side presents a stiff anti-bacterial comb for untangling hair, whilst the reverse side boasts anti-static and anti-bacterial bristles for the final finish. The ergonomic design and angle of the Tail and Mane T-Brush enables you to quickly & capably work between both heads, saving you valuable time and achieving maximum results with minimum effort.
A Quick Review
If it’s been a few months since you last used your competition kit, it might be worth digging it all out and checking it’s all there and all in good condition. Allow yourself some time for repairs and replacements and also be sure to check that your competition clothing still fits you and doesn’t need a dry clean.
Don’t forget to ensure that, as well as all your essentials onboard the lorry, you have packed a few items for those special finishing touches, including our kit. In its tough aluminium storage case our kit is easy to slide and store away in your tack compartment and contains everything you need to create that lasting impression as you enter the arena or ring. Write a checklist and keep it in the lorry so when you are packing it, you can cross reference before you leave home and be sure that you have remembered all those essentials.
If you need to wash your horses’ mane, then try and bathe it a couple of days before your show and ensure that you have rinsed out all the soap suds properly. Don’t apply detangler if you plan to plait – it will make it very slippery work!
Putting the time into training your horse is, of course, paramount if you really want to achieve great results in the competition arena. Whether it’s cross-country schooling, running through elements of your dressage test or practising your technique over fences. Everything you do in the build-up to your show should be giving you both confidence, and don’t forget to have some fun with your horse along the way too! Doing something different together, even if it is as simple as boxing up to hack out somewhere different or to jump if you only work on the flat. Variety really is the spice of life and will certainly help keep your horse a happy and interested athlete.
Enjoy reading this blog, then you may like to read our Behind The Scenes Photo Shoot Blog
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