It has been said that “preparation is the key to success” and at PulseVet, we could not agree more. There can be a lot of nervous anticipation for new riders preparing for their upcoming horseshow because it is very hard to know what to expect. To give your horse and yourself the best experience in the ring there are a variety of things you can do to prepare ahead of time. Additionally, there are many things we recommend you do once you are at the show that can help set you up for success in the ring.

Tips to Prepare for the Horseshow Ahead of Time

In anticipation of your first horseshow, you will be preparing in a variety of ways. You will be gathering what you need to bring, you will be training, and your horse will be training. We highly recommend that you utilize a checklist to ensure that you gather all of the necessary paperwork for the horseshow. Additionally, a checklist will help you remember all tack and equipment for both you and your horse. A checklist is a great way to help you be certain that you have remembered every last detail. You and your horse will likely undergo rigorous training in anticipation of your horseshow. But, training typically tapers slightly before the show to give you and your horse a chance to rest up. This is important because over-training before an event can lead to an unfortunate injury or pain.

Further, at PulseVet, we recommend shock wave treatment for maintenance of your horse. Shock wave therapy can be used while training your horse to help maintain their peak physical state. Additionally, shock wave can be used to treat and prevent injuries that could hinder your horse’s performance in the show ring. Using shock wave as part of your horse’s maintenance program while training can help maintain specific areas of concern. This will help you know your horse is ready to give you its best performance. Now, start visualizing your success at the upcoming horseshoe!

Tips for Success Once You Have Arrived at the Horseshow

Once you have arrived at the horseshow, keep practicing that visualization! Mental preparedness does not stop once you have arrived at the horseshow; visualize exactly how you want your round to go. Next, it is grooming time. Both you and your horse need to be well-groomed for your moment in the ring. We recommend that you be prepared with a rag for last minute touchups so that you both look your best. A horseshow is a competition and just like any competition, it is important to be well-hydrated. This is particularly true in warm-weather climates. Offer your horse water frequently so that they are cool and hydrated before their performance.

Before competition, warm your horse up appropriately but do not overdue it. Now is not the time for training, save your horse’s energy for the big show. Consider lunging your horse to get out energy and help your horse have the right demeanor when entering the ring. And, do not forget one of the most important things – have fun! A horse show is a competition but it is also a chance for you and your horse to strengthen your relationship. This will allow you and your horse to learn and improve for future competition.

After the Horseshow

Once you leave the ring and the competition has ended, caring for your horse does not stop. There are still a few things you can do to ensure a positive horseshow experience for you and your horse. First, do not forget to cool your horse down thoroughly. Additionally, throughout your entire stay at the horseshow it is important to provide your horse with a comfortable physical experience. A comfortable experience includes proper bedding and wrapped legs after competition. Finally, one of the most beneficial things you can do for your horse after competition is use shock wave therapy to maintain ideal physical comfort, allow your horse to feel their best and address any soundness issues.