Stay Safe

Ride & Road

It is important to take precautions in order to stay safe when riding on the roads. Riders should never go out unaccompanied on the roads unless they are fully proficient and confident. High visibility gear should always been worn and a hard hat is a legal requirement for children under 14 years old. It’s a good idea for anyone over 14 years old to wear one too!

The BHS operate a Riding and Road Safety test for riders over 12 years old. The test can be taken at many riding schools so it is not necessary to have your own pony. It is broken down into three parts, a theory test, a simulated road route which is done in an enclosed space such as a field or manége and the final stage is a road route which allows you to demonstrate to the examiner what you have learnt about dealing with the hazards of the road.

Riding in a school or field

Hard hats should be worn to protect your head if you fall off. It is best to wear sturdy shoes to protect toes in case your horse steps on you and body protectors are also an excellent idea to prevent injury. You should never be put on a horse that you feel you are not competent enough to ride. If this is the case speak to your instructor about riding a horse more suited to your abilities.

Never feel pushed into doing something for example jumping a fence that you are worried about. It is much better to do things in your own time, and far more enjoyable too!

Welfare & Safeguarding

The protection of children, young people and vulnerable adults while participating in equestrian sport is of the utmost importance, with participants able to enjoy horse riding in a fun and safe environment whilst being protected from harm.

The BEF and the BEF Member Bodies place the highest priority on safety and enjoyment. The BEF recognise that it has a duty of care towards children within the horse industry; the BEF is responsible for encouraging its member bodies to adhere to safety and welfare legislation.

The BEF has collated guidelines to assist you in understanding the standards you should expect from affiliated riding schools, centres, coaches and shows.

Download the BEF’s leaflet on Information and Guidance for Children in Equestrian Sport

> Find out more about safeguarding on the BEF website - visit

Information regarding the BEF Child Protection policy can be located in Annex B of the BEF Rules, which can be found here, entitled ‘Working with children and vulnerable adults and their protection’.

Copies of specific guidelines can be purchased from the British Horse Society

Are you worried about something?

Please don’t hesitate to get in contact with a Welfare Officer from the respective BEF Member Body if you have a concern you wish to discuss.

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