Manage your showday and stable like a pro: tips from a CSI5* groom

If I’m honest with myself, I must admit that I’m not the most organized person when I comes to my stables. When I leave for a show, I usually have to pack everything in the morning which usually means that I forget the most essential things.

That’s we I asked a CSI5* groom how she manages everything and she gave me some pretty useful tips that were too good not to share with you..

For competitions

  • I always make a list of the stuff I need to take, in order not to forget anything. I literally put everything on it such as blankets, buckets, saddle pads and the passport of the horses.
  • Plan your trip in advance, especially if the competition is further away. For example: if you are going to a big tour in Spain or Portugal, it’s important to determine in advance where you will stop. I always calculate more time than is actually necessary for the trip itself: things can always go wrong or traffic jams when you’re driving in day time, …
  • I always keep a bucket nearby so I can always stop to give the horses some water. If they don’t want to drink in the truck, you can put some carrots or apples in the water. That usually helps.
  • If you go to competitions often, it might be a good idea to keep everything in its own place in the truck, so you don’t always have to unload everything between competitions and then reload.
  • Stick to your home pattern: feed the horses at the same time, get them out of the stable just as often, … Don’t start changing the horses’ routine!
  • I always drive at night to competitions that are further away, especially if I need to pass through Germany or France and pass some major cities This way you can avoid the heat as well in summer months.

At home

  • I always use a whiteboard with all days of the week and the names of the horses on it. This way you can easily plan your day. I always write down the the farrier has been at the stable, when they have been dewormed, when they had their vaccinations, … You can also use an app such as Equicity for that but I prefer to do it the old fashioned way.
  • Make sure you have organized closets at home. All saddle pads together, blankets sorted by size and thickness, … This way you won’t lose time looking for the stuff you need
  • I always have a first aid kit for both rider and horse in the stable. Small or large accidents can always happen. For the horses you should always have isobetadine soap, fat wrap, neocutigenol, scissors, alus spray and a thermometer. This way you can always do something before the vet arrives.