I Am In Love With Online Horse Shows
Yes, it’s true. I am in love with online horse shows. I get to compete in different classes, and have the chance to place in different classes. Most of the benefits of a “real” horse show without the headache and expense of getting my horses to a show ground.
What Is An Online Horse Show?
Have you ever heard of an online horse show? If not, that’s ok. I hadn’t either until I was doing a google search about 4 months ago, and then I found them. Once I entered my first show, I was hooked. It takes my 2 favorite past times, horses and photography and blends them into one!
It is very simple to compete. You find a show, I like The Mane Show and Horse Shows Online, look over the show class list and decide which classes to enter. Then you simply take the photos and upload them to the show. Once the show secretary gets all the classes you have entered together, they will send you an invoice for your entry fees.
Then you just sit back, and wait for the results to come in and see if you placed in any of the classes. Some shows offer rosettes through 8th place while others have placings through 10th. It just depends on the show.
And if you are fortunate enough to win a rosette (or as I like to call them, ribbons) they will mail them out to you. The shows that I have found have been in Great Britain, so it does take a while for the rosettes to arrive, but trust me, it is worth the wait!
I have written another article more in depth which you can find here.
The Benefits Of Online Horse Shows
Beside the advantages that I have discussed before, I thought I would share a few more with you.
Spending Time With Your Horse
This is by far one of the biggest advantages I have found. By participating in online shows, I spend a lot more time with my horses. Yes, I always spend time with my horses because they live with me. But by planning to be in a show, I spend more time pampering and grooming my horses as well as planning what type of photos I want to enter.
I used to spend about 30 minutes a day with my boys, and I always had an excuse of why I couldn’t ride. Now I find myself putting my horse time first.
Improving Your Riding
You want to look good in your photos right? And to do that, you need to practice. Even just seeing what you look like while riding in a photo can help your riding. Do you slouch your shoulders? Are you looking down? How are your hands? And what about your heels? These little things are hard to recognize while you are riding, but if you capture a photo it makes it a lot easier to think about the next time you ride.
Improving Your Photography
I now always have my camera with me when I am out in the barn. You never know when you might get the perfect photo. In fact, I am a little angry with myself right now because I missed a great photo opportunity while I was cleaning the barn this afternoon.
But by having my camera with me (usually) I have more opportunities to capture more photos. And the more photos you take the better photographer you will become.
I also find myself studying the photos that win the classes, so I know how to improve my own photos, and to see what the judges are looking for. For example, the last show I entered with The Mane Show I sent in photos that I thought were good, without taking into consideration what the judges were looking for. And guess what? I didn’t place in a single class.
But I have been studying the winners, and I think I know what I can do better for July. And that’s what showing is all about right? Getting better!
Something New And Different To Do With Your Horse
You can only walk down the same trail so often. And there are only so many different directions you can move in your arena. But if you have a goal in mind, like 5 different photos of your horse in his pasture, you start doing something different. And different is good! It’s fun to do different things with your horse, and maybe even get a rosette for doing it.
I have had so much fun with these shows, and it has given me a new and different approach to the time I spend with my horses.
Even though it isn’t in your face real life competition like you would get at a show you travel too, these classes still offer plenty of competition. There are some incredible moments that have been captured in every class I have entered so far. And it makes it a challenge to place in a class. I think that is one of the reasons I get so excited when I do place!
And I’m not going to lie, I did jump up and down and dance a little (ok a lot) when I was looking at the latest show, and I got first place in a class! I have never won first place, ever. So I was a little excited to see my photo was chosen as the first place winner.
I love having goals. It helps me feel I have accomplished something. And these horse shows help me to set goal, and then work through the process of getting better so I can achieve the goals I have set for myself. I am proud of what I have been able to accomplish thus far, and I cannot wait to see how I have progressed through the end of the year. The next 6 months could be really exciting!
My next goal is to participate in a video class. Hopefully, this will happen this month. Well, that is a goal I have set for myself, we will see if I can get it done.
How about you? Have you ever wanted to compete in a horse show, but were unable to, for whatever reason? If you have, please consider doing an online show. I think you will find it fun, while allowing you to spend some real quality time with your horse as you set out to achieve your goal.
Who knows, maybe we will be competing against each other in a class! If that’s the case, I wish you the best of luck, and hope you achieve your goals. Until next time, stay passionate, and enjoy your ride!