It’s April, and many regions have already kicked off their first shows of the year! Here are five of my personal show season must haves!
1. Shapley’s Show Touch-Up Spray
Anyone who has a horse with lots of chrome, like me, knows the struggle of keeping their legs and other white spots perfectly immaculate before heading into the ring. This stuff is perfect for covering up small stains or blemishes, and it also comes in a variety of horse coat colors!
2. Hanging grooming caddy
These are great for keeping all of your grooming supplies organized and in one convenient spot. You can hang them outside your horse’s stall, in your trailer tack room, or wherever you may need it!
3. Misting fans
It gets hot at horse shows, that’s no secret. These fans are small, light, and perfect for cooling off a bit before you go into the ring, or even if you’re just hanging out at your stalls.
4. Stall guards
A stall guard is a great way to let your horse get some air at a show. Some horses get easily bored being in their stall almost 24/7, and like being able to look out at all the sights and sounds.
5. A good attitude!
This is always a show season must have! Sometimes things don’t go as planned, but it’s important to remember to pick yourself back up afterwards and keep trying! Remember that while horse shows are often stressful, you’re at the show because you love your horses and love competing – everything will be worth it in the end!
With the warm weather coming this is the perfect time to get your tack room reorganized and looking fresh for the summer!
Step 1:Clean out that room out! Anything that has gone outdated or unused for a while get rid of it. Everyone is guilty of keeping what they don’t need or use but in order to use your tack room efficiently those old, unused items need to go.
Step 2:Reuse old shelves to store grooming aids. By using shelves you will be able to optimize space and also create a more clean look. Labelling where each person’s brushes go can also be helpful!
Step 3: Use a blanket rack for your saddle pads. Most people tend to store their saddle pad on their saddle. This works fine except for the fact that the sweat and salt from your horse can be damaging to the leather of your saddle. By storing your saddle pads on a different rack you can help keep your saddle in prime condition.
Step 4: Add some clear, plastic drawers in your tack room to store miscellaneous supplies such as first aid or fly spray. Keeping miscellaneous items all together will help you later on when you go to look for those items. Labelling the drawers will also be beneficial.
Step 5: Put that whiteboard to use. Getting a whiteboard for your tack room will help everyone know the chores that need to be done, lessons for the week, or even which horses are turned out together. These are easy to use and very underrated when trying to stay organized!
About the Author Savanna DeMott is the AHYA Vice President
People have strong opinions about winter – they either love it or they hate it. Whether you’re a snow lover, or whether you despise when the temperature drops anywhere below sixty degrees, most equestrians can agree that winter weather brings a host of nuisances with it. Shorter days, fewer horse shows, icy water buckets and troughs, and of course – dealing with the cold! Here are some tips to keep you and your equines warm and toasty through the rest of the winter months.
Warm water – Consider investing in heated water buckets or de-icers. Having warm water in the winter rather than icy cold water can encourage horses to drink more, ensuring that they stay hydrated and healthy. Plus, it means less time for you to spend breaking up the ice in your horse’s trough or buckets!
Dress in layers – This can apply both to humans and horses! Blankets, neck warmers, and fleece-lined slinkies help protect our ponies from the cold. For us humans, thick socks, gloves, sweatshirts, coats, and hats are all important – putting on a pair of leggings or long johns underneath your pants can help keep you insulated as well!
Hand and foot warmers – These are small heat packs that can go in your boots or gloves! They are usually cheap and easy to find at the supermarket, and they are great for helping keep the feeling in your fingers in toes!
Bit warmers – No horse wants to put a piece of metal in its mouth when the metal is freezing cold. Electric bit warmers exist, or you can even use the hand and foot warmers mentioned above to warm up your bit before your ride.
Do chores during the day – Try to get as much work done as possible during daylight hours when temperatures are higher.
Having a warm drink on hand for yourself such as coffee or hot chocolate isn’t a bad idea either! And if all else fails – go snuggle your horse, and remember that spring is only a few months away!
About the Author Caroline Elik is the Region 11 Youth Director