The New British Showjumping Whips & Spurs Ruling 2020

The New British Showjumping Whips & Spurs Ruling 2020

New rules for whips & spurs in British Showjumping!

British Showjumping (BS) have paved the way for promoting animal welfare with their new Whips & Spurs Ruling – *clapping hands* – effective from the 1st January 2020.

British Showjumping have set the tone for how they expect horses to be treated within the entire vicinity of their showground, and expect to see the “whip, if carried, must be held in the hand by the handle with the handle at the top”. With metal or plastic spurs being permitted – see below for spurs rules.

The new BS Whip rules are as follows:

1. The maximum length of the “Whip” is 70cm and must be no less than 45cm.
2. There must be no “binding” within 17 centimetres of the end of the “Pad”.
3. The minimum diameter for a “Shaft” is 1 centimetre and the “Shaft” should run through the entirety of the whip.
4. The overall weight of the “Whip” must not exceed 160 grams and the weight should be evenly distributed throughout the full length of the “Whip”.
5. The “Contact area”, is considered to be 2/5’s (two fifths) of the overall length of the “Whip” and must be covered with a “Pad”.
6. The “Pad” must be smooth, with no protrusion or raised surface, and be made of shock absorbing material throughout its circumference such that it gives a compression factor of at least 6mm. There is to be no wording, advertising or personalisation of any kind on the “Pad”.

The new BS Spurs rules are as follows:

1. Spurs of excessively severe design are not to be worn. Spurs must be of smooth material (metal or plastic). The end of the shank must be blunt and must point only towards the rear. Only one pair of spurs are to be worn, secured to the rider’s foot in the traditionally correct manner, with the curve of the neck of the spur directed downwards.
2. The overall length of the spur is not to exceed 4cm, measured from the back of the boot to the end of the spur, in its entirety.
3. Only Dummy, Rollerball, Impulse, Rowelled, hammerhead & Prince of Wales Spurs are allowed to be worn.
4. Rowelled spurs if worn, must have smooth rowels, with a diameter of no less than 1cm and no greater than 2cm, with a minimum width of 2mm. The rowels must sit in the vertical plane, horizontal rowels are not allowed.
5. Spurs with interchangeable/removable shanks, spurs with necks set on the inside of the heel, spurs with roughened or cutting edges, serrated spurs, with or without necks are not allowed.
6. In pony competitions, in precedence to the above, the overall length is not to exceed 2.5cm measured from the back of the riders boot. Rowelled spurs are forbidden in these competitions.
7. The misuse of spurs is an offence under Rule 82.4, but riders must also take care that the manner in which they use their spurs does not offend the public contrary to Rule 82.1.

Chief Executive for British Showjumping, commented

...our primary objectives is to ensure equine welfare is always paramount and we see the introduction of this rule as a positive way of meeting this

It is also being considered and discussed with the National Sport Committee to look into overall whips & spurs rules.

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