Even though the summer season is drawing to a close the winter season is just beginning! All over the country showjumping and dressage competitions are held all through the winter months. I have put together a list of equipment I can’t be without, in no particular order!
Alan Davies Grooming Kit – Each of these brushes plays a huge part in getting my horses coat soft, shiny and gleaming for the show ring. These have been well used all summer and in the winter the super soft sheepskin brush ‘Polisher’ and my favourite ‘Mr Glossy’ are perfect for a clipped horse.
- Haukeschmidt gloves – These gloves are fantastic for competition, they are close contact without feeling constrictive. The quality is second to none and after going through a number of Roekl gloves I would highly recommend these as an alternative.
- Thermatex Rug – These are an expensive investment but a worthy investment! I could not imagine getting through a winter without one of these! There is nothing on the market, as far as I know that has the same wicking technology and drying effects. You can use it in the lorry as a show rug, or a stable rug they are great for post exercise when it gets a little colder as they remove the sweat quickly so your horse is able to dry and be comfortable as quickly as possible.
- NAF Warming Wash – This is a light liquid that you can add when sponging down and gives the horse a slight warming sensation. It also smells great, and leaves the coat feeling smooth and shiny.
- HAAS Cleaning Cloth – These cloths are amazing for hot clothing, which past September is generally what we have to do instead of bathing. They are soft, durable and easy to clean and a bargain at £3.75! They are much more effective than a simple towel or cloth and really help to bring the dirt out.
- Absorbine Super Shine Hoof Paint – This hoof paint is incredible. It is long lasting so you don’t need to reapply throughout the day and leaves your horses hoofs sparkling. However do not put it on whilst in competition wear as if you are using the black paint it stains!
- Supreme Products Hot Oil – This is great for hot clothing, and lasts for a really long time. Only a couple of squirts for each time and it leaves the coat clean and sparkly. Great for shows if you have no time to bath or it is too cold.
- Thread & Needle – For beautiful plaits every time you need a waxy thread the same colour as your horses’ mane, and a needle. The needle needs to have a large eye and a blunt end so you don’t accidently poke your horses’ neck! Practice makes perfect, and sewn plaits look fantastic!
- Coconut Oil – Ok so this one is more for the Autumn months as in the winter it is impossible to get it soft enough in -5 degrees! But this is great for putting on muzzle and around eyes to make them shine, the do have to be really clean prior to this or it just lifts the dirt up! This is also god to put on thinning manes.
- Thin V-Neck Thermal Top – This is great to pop under your competition shirt. Doesn’t matter what brand and long as they are long sleeved and have a v neck so don’t show up under your shirt you are good to go! This will keep you warm around the show ground and whilst warming your horse up.
Most of these bits you can get from the Eqclusive website, this is just a guide of things that help me get my boy looking his best for competition over the winter months. But all have been tried and tested by me over the years and these are the bits that have stuck and work the best in my opinion.