Thursday September 16, 2021
For National Pony Club updates and information please go to pcuk.org
HAT, BODY PROTECTORS & AIR JACKET RULES

Hat Rule 2020

 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 as of 1st January 2020 are detailed in the table below:
Hat Standard Safety Mark

PAS 015:1998 or 2011* with BSI Kitemark All activities
VG1 with BSI Kitemark All activities
Snell E2001* onwards with the official Snell label and number All activities
ASTM-F1163 2004a onwards with the SEI mark All activities
AS/NZS 3838, 2006 onwards

All activities
• For cross-country riding (over 80cm) 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) as there is research evidence that a fall onto the fixed peak can result in an over extension of
the neck backwards with the potential for serious injury.
• 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 (British Equestrian Trade Association)
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.
• For Show Jumping and Mounted Games the cover, if applicable, shall be dark blue, black or brown only.
• For Dressage, hats and hat covers must be predominately black, navy blue or a conservative dark colour
that matches the rider’s jacket for Area competitions or above. The Pony Club Hat silk is also acceptable.
• 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.
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. Also, they are
responsible for ensuring that the manufacturer’s guidelines with regard to fit and replacement are followed.

Body Protector Rule 2020

The Pony Club does not make the use of body protectors compulsory, except 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) 

For general use, the responsibility for choosing body protectors and the decision as to their use must
rest with Members and their parents. It is recommended that a rider’s body protector should not be
more than 2% of their body weight. When worn, body protectors must fit correctly, be comfortable
and must not restrict movement. BETA recommends body protectors are replaced at least every
three to five years, after which the impact absorption properties of the foam may have
started to decline.

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.

Air Jackets
If a rider chooses to wear an air jacket in Cross Country or Pony Racing, it must only be used in
addition to a normal body protector which meets the BETA 2009 Level 3 standard (purple label) or
BETA 2018 Level 3 standard (blue and black label). Parents and Members must be aware that
riders may be permitted to continue after a fall in both competition and training rides for Cross Country
and/or Pony Racing, provided the rider has been passed as fit to continue by First Aid Providers. In
the event of a fall, it must be fully deflated or removed before continuing, after which, the conventional
body protector will continue to give protection. Air jackets must not be worn under a jacket and number
bibs should be fitted loosely or with elasticised fastenings over the air jacket.