Dressage tournament: How to prepare properly

Participate in a dressage competition with your own horse? If the preparations go well, a successful participation is possible. We have compiled some tips and tricks for you on the subject of preparation for a dressage tournament - so that you can start the tournament relaxed.

This equipment belongs to the dressage tournament

On the day of all days, you as a rider should be one thing above all: relaxed. Because your mood affects the mood of your horse. The better prepared you are on the day of the show, the more relaxed you and your horse will remain. Ideally, the utensils for the tournament should be packed the day before. But what does actually belong on the packing list for a dressage tournament?

- Saddle, rope, halter, snaffle, saddle blanket, lunge - and depending on the weather, a transport blanket, fly blanket and/or sweat blanket.

- riding clothes, boots, change of shoes

- Snacks for rider and horse, water bucket, hay net, feed

- Head numbers and horse passport, as well as your own identification card

- grooming kit

- Show case, which holds mane comb, mane rubbers, mane spray, wet wipes, hoof oil, and other handy utensils.

Ideally, this packing list can be worked through the day before so that there is not too much excitement on the actual day of the show. It is also important to clean the riding equipment thoroughly and check it for damage.

The foundation for a relaxed, healthy and beautiful horse is not usually laid the day before the show, but in the 365 days leading up to it. If you regularly and conscientiously take care of the best possible nutrition and care of your horse, you should only have to deal with the final details on the day of the dressage competition.

Preparing for a dressage competition: The care

On the day of the dressage competition, rider and horse should shine, not only in terms of ability, but also in terms of appearance. And grooming for the big day doesn't just start on the day of the show, but much earlier. After all, a shiny coat doesn't happen overnight. Still, there are a few tricks to making your horse's coat look extra pretty on show day:

- If possible, do not wash your horse's coat on the day of the dressage show. This is because the natural shine of the coat will be lost. If you absolutely want to clean your horse more deeply shortly before the tournament, postpone the washing cycle to a few days before the tournament. This way, the coat has time to regrease and shines beautifully on the day of the tournament.

- There are some care products on the market that make rider and horse shine exceptionally well on tournament day. However, a cleaning with the conventional care utensils is also not to be neglected, after all, the dust in the coat should give way before the tournament.

- Mane and tail should also not be neglected and perhaps be coiffed the day before.

But the preparations for a dressage competition include not only grooming sessions, but also mental resilience.

How to stay calm

On show day - even with the best preparation - things can get hectic. Mostly because many people and horses come together around the tournament itself and the organization does not always run smoothly.

Accordingly, it is advisable to make the most important preparations the day before. This includes finding the ideal travel route to the show and creating a realistic schedule that also leaves room for unforeseen incidents. The earlier you arrive at the show site with your horse, the more time there is to familiarize yourself with the conditions on site and get into a relaxed mood.

It is best not to go to the show alone, but to be accompanied by an experienced one. This way there is always a helping hand ready to take care of the queuing at the entry point or to scout out the local conditions.