The bridge is a Working Equitation obstacle that horses and riders may be required to navigate during the Ease of Handling and/or Speed trials. This obstacle can be used at all levels.
This obstacle may be used up to twice on the same course if used in opposite directions.
The bridge should be made of wood and be soundly built in order to safely accommodate the weight of a horse and rider.
According to the Working Equitation Rules, the bridge must be at least 1.5 meters (5 feet) wide, and at least 4 meters (13 feet) long. The minimum height at the center of the bridge is 20 centimeters (8 inches). If side rails are used, they should be between 91 cm – 1.2 meters (3-4 feet) in height.
Execution – The bridge must be crossed at a walk in the Ease of Handling phase for all levels. The bridge may be crossed in both directions provided that there is one obstacle in between the first and second crossing.
EASE OF HANDLING
When the wooden bridge is included as an obstacle on the Ease of Handling course, the competitor should cross the bridge at a walk. Trotting or cantering over the bridge will be scored negatively.
Horses and riders should approach the bridge straight, without hesitation. They should transition to a walk before ascending the bridge. When scoring this obstacle, the judge will consider the quality of the transitions, the quality of the walk over the bridge, and the overall harmony and confidence exhibited by the horse and rider.
The wooden bridge may also be used during the Speed trial. When this is the case, competitors may cross the bridge at any speed. It also acceptable for the horse and rider to leap onto and off of the bridge, provided they cross the bridge in its entirety.
For complete details about this obstacle and its requirements, reference the U.S. Working Equitation Rules, here.
Last update 12/31/2018