Showmanship Basics

Learn the fundamentals of showmanship so your next pattern is perfect.

text size

Showmanship is all about poise. In fact, according to the AQHA Official Handbook of Rules and Regulations, “showmanship is designed to evaluate the exhibitor’s ability to execute, in concert with a well-groomed and conditioned horse, a set of maneuvers prescribed by the judge with precision and smoothness while exhibiting poise and confidence, and maintaining a balanced, functional and fundamentally correct body position.”

With more than 25 years' worth of experience, AQHA Professional Horseman Brad Kearns knows a thing or two about the key ingredients to make a winning showmanship performance. Even top-flight teams start with basics and refer back to them whenever a hitch comes up in their training program. In Showmanship Basics, Brad shares his recipe for a foundation that can help you turn in a perfect pattern.

In this valuable ebook, Brad explains:

  • The basics of the quarter system, the established method for inspecting and showing horses at halter
  • How to get your horse sparkling clean and outfitted in a well-fitting leather halter
  • How to attain the correct positions beside your horse
  • The many maneuvers judges can call for in a showmanship pattern
  • How to practice a pattern at home
  • How to streamline your routine for quickness and accuracy
  • And more tips for gaining an edge on other showmanship competitors

In Showmanship Basics, Brad explains why showmanship is the perfect event for people who can’t afford an expensive horse.

“Showmanship is a class where you can be on a limited budget, work hard and be competitive even at the national level,” he said. “The class isn’t judged on who has the most expensive outfit or fanciest halter. The AQHA rulebook calls for you to be neatly attired and your horse to be well-groomed.”

Submit the form below to download the Showmanship Basics e-book.


November-December 2023

  • Creek Plantation takes the AQHA Best Remuda Award.

  • Top Deck left a line that fills the Hall of Fame.

  • With culinary projects and a performance-horse breeding program in addition to traditional ranching enterprises, the XIT Ranch is finding its way in a new century.

Current Issue