Horse Trials Guidelines

These guidelines are aimed at students who want to compete in USEA recognized horse trials, but are also recommended for students who are competing at the lower levels of eventing. Recognized horse trials require a large commitment of time and energy from both riders and parents. Those requirements increase as the levels get higher. These are strong recommendations for your and your horse’s safety and well being. You cannot be over prepared. If you have any questions ask Ms K. or Ms M.


  1. Ride an average of at least five days per week.
  2. Be fit enough to walk your cross country course and then ride in the event. You can’t be too fit.
    1. Ride at least 10 minutes each ride in 2pt
    2. Ride at least 10 minutes each ride without stirrups


1. Ridden at least 5 days per week (Can include lesson rides). This should include the following:

    1. Dressage at least one day on your own. This does not mean practice tests. It means practice circles, transitions, bending, keeping the horse on the bit etc.
    2. Ride one day around the field doing set work
      1. Three five minute trot sets with 3 minute walks in between
      2. Three two minute canter sets with 3 minute walks in between
      3. If the ground is hard, then do the sets in the big outdoor
    3. Walk around the field as much as possible. Use it as a warm up and or cool out for your basic ride or lesson. The more time you spend out there the more comfortable you and your horse will be cross country.
    4. Do as much of your riding as possible in the big outdoor as it simulates the show/ cross country situation much more than the smaller arenas. The horses will be more focused at the shows if you can get it right in the big outdoor.
    5. Studs should be put in for set work. At least hind studs in for all lessons. Don’t be lazy. The more you put your studs in, the better you get at it. Also stud holes that are used regularly are easier to put studs in.  This will save you time at the events.