If you find yourself stressing out at horse shows, you are not alone! While having some nervous feelings before a show is normal, make sure that you take extra measures to reduce any unnecessary worries.

1) Several days before your show, make sure that all of your tack is accounted for and prepared to be placed in your trailer.

2) Arrive early to ensure there’s plenty of time to warm up before your first class.

3) If you are in a class with a pattern, be sure to visualize it. I compete in a variety of disciplines that require patterns, and I always block out some time to sit by the arena and choose visual markers before my class begins.

4) Speaking of patterns, repeating a pattern out loud to your trainer or friend is a great way to help you memorize it.

5) Do not forget to eat! This may sound obvious, but it is important to not forget to fuel your body.

6) Don’t take everything so seriously! The greatest trainers of all time have made rookie mistakes at horse shows. It is important to be able to remain positive and laugh throughout the day, no matter how you score.

7) Last but not least, focus on the outcome that you want. Don’t weigh yourself down with thoughts of your horse spooking or misbehaving; if you’re focused on your horse making a mistake, it’s more likely to happen anyways.