Eventing in Ponyplay


Eventing ponies (also sometimes referred to as 3 day, or combined training) are trained in multiple disciplines to show off their versatility. The pony must be trained in the following three disciplines:

  1. Dressage - performed in an arena, dressage focuses on displaying the fluidity and willingness of a pony at each of the gaits in addition to (depending on the level of the test) more advanced movements.
  2. Show Jumping - a jumping course is setup in a standard arena, and the pony must navigate the jumps in a pre-determined order.
  3. Cross Country - a "cross country" (i.e. not confined to an arena) course that the pony must follow. The terrain is more difficult to navigate (there may be shallow ponds, mud, etc.), and there are obstacles (typically more natural looking than standard arena jumps) along the pony's path that the pony must jump.

Eventing, aside from being incredibly fun, also showcases a pony's capability in multiple disciplines and requires endurance on the part of the pony and rider. The training of a eventing pony is essentially split into training individually for each of the three components (usually on separate days) and requires both pony and trainer to seamlessly switch between galloping through muddy trails and jumping logs to performing a polished collected canter.

For shows, the pony and rider are turned out according the typical rules of the particular discipline (e.g. for the dressage portion, the rider is dressed in standard dressage show clothing, and for for cross country pretty much anything goes).

The practicalities of training a human pony to event can make this discipline especially difficult due mostly to the large space requirements for a cross country course (and the time to properly equip the course with obstacles) and the requirement that the trainer run alongside the pony (or trust the pony to complete the course by himself) over a long distance.