Sunday December 4, 2022
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Hat & Body protector rules 2022

Hat Rules 2022

It is mandatory for all Members to wear a protective helmet at all times when mounted with a chinstrap fastened and adjusted so as to prevent movement of the hat in the event of a fall. This rule defines the quality of manufacture that is required. The individual Sports also have additional requirements with regard to colour and type. It is strongly recommended that second-hand hats are not purchased.
The hat standards accepted are detailed in the table below:






In order to ensure riders are wearing the most up to date riding hats, please note that from the 1st January 2023, the following hat standards will no longer be accepted, due to the age of hats made to these standards:
1. PAS O15 1998
2. SNELL 2001
To manage this change, a new colour of hat tag will be required for all BE, PC and BRC activities from 1st January 2023.
• For cross country riding (80cm and over) including Eventing, Tetrathlon, Horse Trials, Pony Racing (whether it be tests, rallies, competition or training) and Mounted Games competitions, a jockey skull cap must be worn with no fixed peak, peak type
extensions or noticeable protuberances above the eyes or to the front, and should have an even round or elliptical shape with a smooth or slightly abrasive surface, having no peak or peak type extensions. Noticeable protuberances above the eyes or to the front not greater than 5mm, smooth and rounded in nature are permitted. A removable hat cover with a light flexible peak may be used if required.
• It is strongly recommended that a jockey skull cap is worn for cross country riding over lower fences (less than 80cm).
• No recording device is permitted (e.g. hat cameras) as they may have a negative effect on the performance of the hat in the event of a fall.
• The fit of the hat and the adjustment of the harness are as crucial as the quality. Members are advised to try several makes to find the best fit. The hat should not move on the head when the head is tipped forward. Most helmet manufacturers recommend you visit a qualified BETA fitter.
• Hats must be replaced after a severe impact as subsequent protection will be significantly reduced. Hats deteriorate with age and should be replaced after three to five years depending upon the amount of use.
• Hats must be worn at all times (including at prize-giving) when mounted with a chinstrap fastened and adjusted so as to prevent movement of the hat in the event of a fall.
• The Official Steward/Organiser may, at his discretion, eliminate a competitor riding in the area of the competition without a hat or with the chinstrap unfastened or with a hat that does not comply with these standards.

Hat Checks and Tagging
The Pony Club and its Branches and Centres will appoint Officials, who are familiar with The Pony Club hat rule, to carry out hat checks and tag each hat that complies with the requirements set out in the hat rule with an aquamarine Pony Club hat tag. Hats fitted with an aquamarine Pony Club, British Eventing (BE) or British Riding Club (BRC) hat tag will not need to be checked on subsequent occasions. However, The Pony Club reserves the right to randomly spot check any hat regardless of whether it is already tagged.
Pony Club (aquamarine) hat tags are only available to purchase from The Pony Club Shop. Tagging indicates that a hat meets the accepted standards. No check of the fit and condition of the hat is implied. It is considered to be the responsibility of the Member’s parent(s)/guardian(s) to ensure that their hat complies with the required standards and is tagged before they go to any Pony Club event. They are also responsible for ensuring that the manufacturer’s guidelines with regard to fit and replacement are followed.


Body Protector Rules 2022


Body protectors are compulsory for all Cross Country riding and Pony Racing whether it be training or competing. If a Body protector is worn for any Pony Club activity it must meet BETA 2009 Level 3 standard (purple label) or BETA 2018 Level 3 standard (blue and black label).

BETA 2009 Level 3 (purple label) body protectors will continue to be accepted at Pony Club competitions until 1st December 2024.

BETA 2009 Level 3 (purple label) body protectors will continue to be accepted at Pony Club competitions until 31st December 2024.
Riders who choose to use the Woof Wear Body Cage EXO must lodge a key with the Event Organiser when they collect their number.

Flu vaccination rules:

Did you know? It is now compulsory for all ponies and horses entering any competitions at Area Level and Above, to produce a valid equine passport and vaccination record, which must:

  • must accompany the Horse to all Events
  • must be available for inspection
  • must be produced on request at any other time during the Event

Failure to comply with these requirements is a breach of the Vaccination Rule and the Horse will only be allowed to compete at the PC Steward’s discretion.

No Horse may take part in a PC Event (which includes entering competition stables) unless it has a current vaccination against equine influenza. For more details, please read the Pony Club rules with care!

General safety:

Stirrups – please make sure that stirrups are the correct width for footwear being worn: they must be large enough to allow about 1/4″ (7mm) at each side of the rider’s foot. (The Manual of Horsemanship) Please check this when you buy new boots – bigger sizes are wider!

Stitching on stirrup leather (buckle end) and the fold where the stirrup hangs from – check for wear and weak stitching!

Girth straps on the saddle – replace when worn! 

Girth – check for any weak stitching or wear

No earrings, necklaces, bracelets – that includes the boys!