What to wear in the Dressage Arena
Trotting down the centreline for your first dressage test is one of the scariest and most exciting moments in your riding career. You've trained hard to make sure your horse is ready, you've learnt your test, you're ready to go right? Well making sure you look the part and are wearing the right dressage riding clothing is important because the overall look of you and your horse as a combination does contribute to your overall score in the collective marks. Here we take a look at what you need to look your best in the dressage arena!
While it may seem crazy to wear white around our at times grubby horses it is tradition to wear white or light coloured breeches or tights in the dressage arena. According to the EA rule book the seat may be a dark colour like our Zara white with grey seat breeches.
At QJ we have a range of white Competition Breeches from our Lauren Breeches to our Hannah High Waisted Breeches or even our white and beige Competition Riding Tights. That means you can find your favourite breech or tight that you love to ride in at home and chances are we'll have a competition pair to match.
QJ Ambassador and Grand Prix rider Megan Bryant loves her Hannah High Waisted competition breeches.
I love the Hannah high waisted white breeches for competition. I love the higher waist for competition which ensures my show shirt remains tucked in to give an overall polished look. The fake front pockets are also a great feature for a slim lined look on the horse, no extra material for the pockets that never sits quite right. Plus a great full seat silicon for helping with that sitting trot in the arena.
Keeping with the white theme you will want to wear a white show shirt which either sits underneath your jacket or on days when the hot weather policy is enforced will be on show in the arena. Ideally you want a shirt that is super breathable and won't restrict you when you're riding.
We have a huge range of QJ Show Shirts to choose from. The Grace Show Shirt features a very pretty lace feature across the shoulders or the the Sally Frill Show Shirt has a standout frill around the collar for added appeal. You can even choose to buck the traditional white trend with the Jane Traditional Show Shirt which features a navy lower half to help you stay clean and white upper half for that perfect competition look beneath your jacket.
Many riders choose to pair their shirt with a Stock. There are a variety of stocks available but the most popular is a pre tied stock like the below. These attach around your neck conveniently with velcro and feature a bit of bling to jazz up your outfit.
Your competition jacket is really the icing on the cake and something you will love slipping on at your competitions. Our QJ Competition Jackets are made from a super breathable and four way stretch fabric meaning you'll be comfortable when you hit the arena.
Up to Advanced level riders can wear a jacket that is either a solid colour or a very faint or tweed pattern. Unlike showjumping bright colours are not permitted to be worn in the dressage arena which is why most riders stick to the traditional black or navy colour way. However accents such as piping and matching colour sections on collars and/or pocket flaps of a different colour to the coat are permitted.
When riders reach Advanced level they are able to choose to wear either Dressage Tails or a short competition jacket however at this level and above the coat must be a solid colour and not patterned or a tweed.
Want some help deciding what QJ Riding Wear pieces are the perfect fit for you? Get in touch with us and we'd love to help deck you out in your competition outfit!