Show Ring Skills – Applying Quarter Marks

Show Ring Skills – Applying Quarter Marks

With competition season just around the corner we’ve been learning all about the ultimate show ring skill… applying quarter marks!

In essence quarter marks are about creating an illusion. Usually seen in the show ring or dressage arena they’re used to show off  your horses muscle tone and conformation (while detracting from any flaws).

Creating The Correct Look For Your Horse

Hunter Types and Riding Horses – Chosen to flatter their free and forward movements the quarter marks applied to hunter and riding horses are big and bold just like the horses themselves. Patterns are generally kept plain and simple to avoid looking cluttered.

Ponies and Hacks – The quarter marks chosen for for ponies and hacks are generally more artistic. Some choose to use elaborate stencils depicting shapes or flags while others go for the traditional V shaped checker-board type pattern.

What You’ll Need

How are they applied?

Quarter marks are almost always a final touch. They should be the very last thing you do before heading into the show ring. The key to creating perfect quarter marks every time is to ensure that your horses is super clean. All quarter marks start by dampen their coat. To do this submerge a dense body brush in a bucket of water and shake off the excess. Starting at the top of the rump brush the hair so that it faces towards your horses tail, following the direction of hair growth. To smooth the hair spray with coat gloss and then use your hand to remove any tracks left by the bristles of the brush.

Vertical Marks and Sharks Teeth

vertical quarter marks
  1. Using the quarter marking comb make vertical lines down your horses quarters stopping just above the hip. Each mark should be approximately 1cm apart.
  2. Underneath the quarter marks you can apply sharks teeth. To do this position the brush mid quarter and brush in an upwards ark towards your horses tail. After one stroke from the same point brush down diagonally then repeat the process.  
  3. Once you’ve completed this on both sides of your horse run the brush down their spine to ensure that the marks are straight and even.
  4. From the top of the dock run the brush down the in a straight line to create the illusion of better muscle tone.
  5. Complete the look with Sparkle spray.

V-shaped Checker-board

Checker-board quarter marks
  1. Using the quarter marking comb make a short vertical lines down the rump between 2-3cm in length. To get the spacing even use your comb to measure the distance between each line.
  2. When you’ve completed the fist row use this as a guide to complete the second, third and so on.
  3. Once you’ve complete this on both sides of your horse run the brush down their spine to ensure that the marks are straight and even.
  4. From the top of the dock run the brush down the in a straight line to create the illusion of better muscle tone.
  5. Complete the look with Sparkle spray.

From everyone here at Naylors we’d like to wish you the very best of luck this show season! We hope that you have found this information useful. If you have any further questions please leave a comment or give our customer service team a call.


More articles that may interest you

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *