Show ponies are ponygirls or ponyboys who are trained to compete in shows. While often considered synonymous with dressage ponies, show ponies actually encompass a broader group including ponies shown in hand, dressage ponies, eventing ponies, and more. In ponyplay, a show pony is either:
Show ponies are usually taught the various gaits and how to perform them gracefully. Dressage leaning show ponies are also taught dressage such as piaffe, passage and the various tempi. They may also be taught dancing routines and some types of exaggerated gaits for aesthetic and entertainment value.
Show pony tack can be very elaborate and colorful, with fancy plumes and harnesses. A show pony is almost akin to showing a horse in hand or in hunters. The pony's conformation, presentation, and quality of gaits are all factors that are judged for a show pony. Show ponies can be either two legged or four legged ponies, and their gaits, movements and tack will be chosen accordingly. Four legged show ponies can emulate more accurately a horse's natural gaits; this is especially true for the canter since a three beat gait is impossible to truly reproduce with only two legs. Of course, a two legged pony can probably jump a course better, or at least higher, than a four legged pony, so it is completely dependent upon what the pony is trying to achieve as a show pony.
Show ponies can also benefit from a good exercise regimen, but I would especially recommend one for those ponies who compete in any jumping events.