Reining is designed to show the athletic ability of ranch-type horses in the confines of a show arena. Contestants are required to run one of 10 approved patterns, divided into seven or eight manoeuvres, including small slow circles, large fast circles, flying lead changes, 360 degree spins and what is generally considered the signature move of the reining horse, the sliding stop.
Reining, which became an FEI discipline in 2000, originated from moves that a cattle horse makes in performing its duties and was first recognised as a sport in 1949 by the American Quarter Horse Association (AQHA).
Competitions take place within an arena where markers are used to enable riders to better follow pattern proportions. To allow top performance and ensure the soundness of competing horses, special footing made of a clay base with a combination of sand and silt as a loose topping is required.
Although part of a sporting lifestyle closely linked to the spirit of the Wild West, Reining is growing in popularity around the world. Despite the seemingly relaxed attitude of both horse and rider and the loose reins typically used, Reining demands high levels of concentration and riding skills with smoothness, finesse, attitude, quickness and authority all being closely watched.
The FEI Education & Officials Department have recently published explainer videos for the major FEI Reining 2021 Rule changes.
These videos are mainly aimed at Officials and Athletes who are required to be up-to-date with the different rules. For the wider audience these videos will serve a rather informative purpose, providing a deeper understanding of our sport. The goal of these short videos is to highlight the most impactful rule changes and their rationale in each discipline, as well as more general regulations including the Equine Anti-Doping Controlled Medication Regulations and the Anti-Doping Rules for Human Athletes which underwent a full review in 2020.
Here are the direct links to the below listed videos on FEI Campus by clicking on the relevant name: