River Bend

Quiz Questions

Newsletter Quiz Questions

Each month in our members’ newsletter, we will include one Quiz Question for our members holding D, C & B certifications. 

January 2018:

D Question: List the major headings for your Horse Health and Maintenance Record Book.

D Answer: Your Horse Health and Maintenance Record Book should contain sections of the following: General Information about your horse and you (including any equine insurance), a photo or description of your horse and current Coggins. General Horse information should include the following areas: vital signs at rest, routine immunizations, deworming schedules, shoeing, feeding schedules and changes, medications, and dentistry records. All costs associated with these areas should be included in the record book. Conditioning and Activity schedules should be included as well. Extra Veterinarian visits, feed, and boarding expenses should be included too. Last an Income and Cost summary section should be included. USPC Website under members section Standards of Proficiency, Test Sheets, and Flow Charts.

C Question: What is Parallel Leading and Parallel Longeing and why would you do this?

C Answer: Parallel leading is an important step in teaching a pony to longe. Before he can learn to work at the end of a 30 ft. longe line, he must learn to obey moving forward, stop obey voice commands when he is several feet away from you.This procedure develops into a parallel longeing ( when you are 6 to 10 ft. away from him), which prepares the pony for actual longeing (when you are pivoting with your horse traveling around you on a 20-meter circle). USPC Manual of Horsemanship C Level pg 284.

B Question: In the USPC Advanced Horsemanship Manual ( HB-A) it asked: "What is good teaching?" List the nine aspects given in the manual and indicate which one you think is the most important one to show an examiner.

B Answer: Safety first! know your subject, be a model, discipline & respect, be interested in your students, be fair, honest & positive, break the material down into simple learning steps, use variety to keep lessons interesting and set ground rules. Above all though put safety first of rider and horse or pony.USPC Advanced Horsemanship Manual HB-A Levels. pgs 291-294.


October 2017:

D Question:  Describe the penalties for being late for a formal inspection at a USPC rally.

C Question:  What is the standard size of a Polocross field?

B Question:  You are the barn manager at a ten-stall event barn.  One of the horses in your neighbor’s barn has just been diagnosed with a highly communicable disease which is transmitted through the air but can be carried on clothing (although humans are not susceptible).  Describe any policies and procedures you would put in place until your vet gives everyone the green light to go back to business as usual.

D Answer:  5 points plus 1 point for each minute you are late checking in for a formal inspection, up to 40 points total.  [USPC Horse Management Handbook-2017, Appendix H-5a USPC Horse Management Turnout Inspection]

C Answer:  The standard size of the Polocrosse field shall be: 

Length . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .160 yards 

Width . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 60 yards 

Goal scoring area . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  30 yards 

Midfield . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .100 yards 

Radius of Goal Semi-Circle . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 yards

[USPC Handbook and Rules for Polocrosse Competition-2017, Article 12 page 11]

B Answer:  This really did happen in Virginia Region a few years ago.  We even canceled out CT because we didn’t want to put any horses in danger of being exposed.  Any horse who left their barn was not allowed back until the quarantine was lifted.  New horses were not allowed to come into any barns.  People were required to dip the bottoms of their shoes in a Clorox bath and to change clothes if they came from another barn.  Once you left your barn, you were asked to wash your clothes before returning or going to another facility.  Any infected horses have quarantined away from all other horses and people were required to wear disposable “scrubs” when working with those horses.  Anything airborne can be carried from horse to horse on a person’s clothing.  [Dawn Bellinger’s personal experience]


September 2017:

D Question:  What is “weaving” and is it a desirable trait?

C Question:  List the suggested distances for one-stride and two-stride combinations for large horses; large ponies, small and short-stride horses; and, small to medium ponies.

B Question:  Describe a properly built stall floor.


D Answer:  Weaving is when the pony sways from side to side, swinging his head and shifting from one foot to the other.  This habit is usually seen in nervous ponies.  A stall screen with a U-shape lets the pony look out but makes it hard for him to weave.  It is not a desirable trait and thus labeled as a “vice.”  [USPC Manual of Horsemanship: D Level, p. 195]

C answer:

one stride combinations:  Horse-18' to 20'; large pony-17' to 18'; medium pony-15' to 17'; small pony-14' to 16' 

Two stride combinations:  Horse-34' to 36'; large pony-33' to 34'; medium pony-30' to 32'; small pony-29' to 30' [USPC Manual of Horsemanship: C level, pages 64 and 81]

B Answer:  Dig floor down and fill with a 24” layer of rock (about 1 ½ to 2” diameter), then a 12” layer of ¾” crushed stone. Top with a 6” layer of “blue stone,” decomposed limestone, or road base.  Sand, limestone or dirt floors can be kept level by installing a stall floor grid, which prevents horses from digging holes.  [USPC Manual of Horsemanship: B, HA, A Levels, p. 559]


August 2017:

D Question:  Describe “Unauthorized Assistance” during a pony club show jumping competition.  What are the exceptions to this rule?

C Question:  In a USPC Eventing competition, can you be penalized for a willful delay on cross-country?  If so, how is it determined and what is the penalty?

B Question:  How do you calculate Optimum Time for a cross-country course?


D Answer:  Any intervention by a third party during the course of a round, whether solicited or not, with the object of helping a competitor or the competitor’s horse, is considered to be unauthorized assistance.

B. Handing anything, which has been dropped during his/her round to a mounted competitor, constitutes unauthorized assistance and the competitor will be eliminated.  Handing protective headgear and/or spectacles to a rider is not considered unauthorized assistance.

[USPC Handbook & Rules for Show Jumping 2017, Article 57, p. 25]

C Answer:  Willful Delay (BN, Novice, Training) . . . . . . . . . . . .20 penalties (between last fence and finish line)  [USPC Handbook & Rules For Eventing Competition 2017, Article 31, page 16]

B Answer:  The distance divided by the designated speed gives the optimum time [USPC Handbook & Rules For Eventing Competition 2017, Article 26, page 12]


July 2017:

D Question:  List all required information on a stall card.

C Question:  During a USPC Eventing competition, what should the Stable Manager bring to the Vet Box area?

B Question:  How can you tell if your horse is dehydrated and what are some things you can do to help him?


D Answer:  Rider’s Name, Rating, Competition Number, and Emergency Contact Information; Mount’s Name, Age, Sex, Height, Temperature, Pulse, and Respiration (at rest), Allergies, Vices, Picture or Physical Description, Medications, Supplements,  Neutraceuticals, and/or Loose Salt; Chaperone’s Name and Emergency Contact Information; Owner of Mount’s Name, Phone Number, and Emergency Contact Information; Veterinarian’s Name and Phone Number; Farrier’s Name and Phone Number; and, Insurance Name, Phone Number, Policy Name & Number, and any required Pre-Authorization.  [[USPC Web Site/USPC Horse Management Handbook-Rules for Rallies, Appendix E-1 Stall Card Template]

C Answer:  Have these things available and set up BEFORE your first competitor comes off the Cross Country course!  1. halters for the horses on your team;  2. a tarp or blanket (preferably something waterproof) on which to place the tack until it can be carried back to the barn after your last competitor comes off the Cross Country course. Put your equipment AWAY from the area where the horses come off course and away from the Vet Box per se, so that your team s tack does not get stepped on;  3.  sweat scrapers;  4.  sponges;  and, 5.  small buckets for water so the horses can drink and larger buckets to fill your sponge buckets from the community large bucket.   [USPC Web Site/Handbook and Rules for Eventing Competition-2017, Article 30 Vet Check After Cross Country ]

B Answer:  Horses deal with excessive heat in a different way than humans.  Signs that your horse may be suffering include loss of appetite, change in behavior and seems to be very tired.  Their heart rate may rise and they may pant.  Taking their temperature with a rectal thermometer is a good way to gauge if they are seriously overheated.  The pinch test is an accurate way to tell if your horse is dehydrated.  Pinch a fold of skin on their neck.  If the skin stays pulled up, your horse is dehydrated and needs water and perhaps electrolytes immediately.  On a well-hydrated horse, the skin pulls back instantly.  A good way to cool a horse quickly is to soak them in cool to cold water, then immediately scrape it off and soak them again.  But, get that water off fast.  It will heat up and act like a hot blanket.  Resoak and then scrape until you notice that the water you are scraping off is no longer hot.   [USPC Web Site/ Handbook and Rules for Eventing Competition-2017, Article 30 Vet Check After Cross Country]


June 2017:

D, C & B Question:  List the Felt Pin Back Colors for USPC Membership.


D, C & B Answer:  D Yellow; C1-2 Green; C+ Pink; HB Brown; C3 White; H Lavender; B Red; H-A Orange; A Royal Blue (Specialty ratings use the same colors as traditional ratings.)  [USPC Web Site/Forms page; Pin Back Colors for USPC Membership]


May 2017:

D Question:  Describe how to measure the height of a pony and the height definitions for horses and small, medium and large ponies.  
C Question:  What is Beet Pulp and why would you feed it to your horse?
B Question:  Your horse is rubbing all the hair off his tail on the stall door and on the rails in the field.  What should you suspect and how can you check it?


D Answer:  The size of a pony is measured in “hands,” from the ground to the withers.  One hand equals 4 inches.  A horse measuring stick is used for measuring.  With the pony standing on level ground, measure from the ground to the highest point of the withers, making sure that the measuring arm is level.  In this country, a horse measures over 14 hands and 2 inches, written as 14.2 hands.  A pony measures less than 14.2 when it is mature.  There are small ponies (up to 12.2 hands), medium ponies (from 12.2 to 13.2 hands), and large ponies (13.2 to 14.2 hands).  A pony is not a baby horse.  [USPC Manual of Horsemanship: D Level, p. 249]
C Answer:  Beet pulp is a by-product of processed sugar beets.  It may be used as a form of roughage, especially for horses with heaves or allergies.  It usually is shredded or made into pellets.  Beet pulp is more digestible than hay but bulkier than grain.  The calcium content of beet pulp is higher than that of Timothy hay but less than that of alfalfa.  Beet pulp is very low in phosphorous and B vitamins and contains no carotene or vitamin D. Dry beet pulp swells as it absorbs water or saliva.  It must always be fed wet; eating dry beet pulp may cause choking. Beet pulp should be soaked in water for 2 hours or overnight (up to 10 hours). [USPC Manual of Horsemanship: C Level, p. 171]  
B Answer:  While some horses just like to rub, if he’s rubbing off the hair, you should suspect and check for a couple of things.  1) Does he have a bad case of dandruff?  Dandruff can cause many horses severe itching.  Use a dandruff shampoo every day for a few days, making sure you rinse the tail thoroughly.  You can also use baby oil or tea tree oil soaked into the tailbone, leave overnight and wash thoroughly for a few days.  Getting rid of dandruff can be tricky and some horses are sensitive to certain products.  Make sure the irritation isn’t caused by your using too many harsh products.  2) Does he have bots?  Although bots don’t generally lay their eggs in the tail, practically speaking, you can find them anywhere and will need to remove them.  If you are having a problem with your horse getting reinfected with botflies, you should be sure his paddock area is clean from manure as much as possible.  3) Does he have pinworms?  Pinworms lay their eggs on the skin outside the anus, forming a grey and yellow mass.  A simple fecal test will confirm. (Tapeworms are the only worms that frequently don’t show up in a fecal test.) Panacur is the only dewormer effective against pinworms so you should make sure that you schedule includes this.   The presence of pinworms suggests that the overall deworming program is ineffective and should be reviewed.  4) Does he have ticks?  This is a common problem with pasture kept horses during the height of the summer when the grass is tall and the ticks are hungry.  If you find one, you are sure to find others so check him over very carefully.  Some horses are allergic to products such as Equispot so test your horse if you're not sure before using.  Some people don't think it helps, while others have had good luck with it.  [Dr. Hope McKalip, Little Fox Equine]


April 2017:

D, C & B Question: Write the Pony Club Pledge.


D, C & B Answer: As a member of the United States Pony Club, I stand for the best in sportsmanship as well as in horsemanship. I shall compete for the enjoyment of the game well played and take winning or losing in stride, remembering that without good manners and good temper, sport loses its cause for being. I shall endeavor to maintain the best tradition of the ancient and noble skill of horsemanship, always treating my horse with the consideration due to a partner. [USPC Web Site/Forms page; USPC Pledge]

February 2017:

D Question: Describe a properly fitted snaffle bit and any requirements for use of particular snaffle bits.

C Question: Define impulsion?

B Question: What is a Driving Hold? When would you use it and why?


D Answer: All bits should be about a ¼ inch wider than your pony’s mouth. They must be smooth and comfortable, with no rough or rusty spots. They should not pinch or rub the pony’s lips. A snaffle bit must rest high in the pony’s mouth so he cannot get his tongue over it. A properly fitted snaffle should make one or two gentle wrinkles at the corners of his lips, like a smile. If you use a “full-cheek snaffle,” you should use keepers on the upper cheeks so that the pony cannot catch the upper cheek of the bit on something and cause an accident.   [USPC Manual of Horsemanship: D Level, p.268]

C Answer: Impulsion is energy. It comes from the pony’s desire to go forward. Without impulsion, you cannot have free forward movement or good jumping. Impulsion is not speeding or wild, runaway energy. If impulsion isn’t under control, it is of no use and can even be dangerous. Check your pony’s impulsion by squeezing your legs briefly as you trot or canter. He should respond by increasing his stride right away. If he feels lazy or sticky, you may need to use a leg-cluck-stick lesson to remind him to go forward when you ask him to. [USPC Manual of Horsemanship: C Level, p. 74]

B Answer: A Driving Hold for Automatic Release is a special way of holding the reins, which can help you follow the balancing gestures of the horse’s head and neck more accurately, and develop a better automatic release when jumping on contact. The rein comes into the hand between the thumb and first finger, with the end of the rein coming out of the little finger. Keep your wrists straight and allow the horse to stretch your arms and elbows forward as his neck and head stretch out and down over a jump. The driving hold is not as effective as a normal rein hold in controlling the horse on the approach, but it is an excellent exercise for advanced riders. [USPC Manual of Horsemanship: B, HA, A Level, p. 97]

January 2017:

D Question: List the ten required items in a team’s utility kit for a pony club competition.

C Question: What is the C-1 Standard for Riding in the Open?

B Question: How many USPC Scholarships are currently offered and when is the application deadline? What is the highest paying scholarship for?


D Answer: A team’s utility kit has the following ten required items: hammer, nails, screwdriver, pliers, scissors, jackknife (capable of cutting rope), leather punch, thumbtacks, duct tape, 2 Pony Club pins. [USPC Web Site; Equipment Checklist]

C Answer: Ride safely with control in a group, on a suitable mount, at the walk, trot, and canter. C-1 speed should not exceed 325 meters per minute to 350 meters per minute. Discuss and demonstrate riding safely over varied terrain, incorporating as many of the following elements as local conditions allow: hills, small/shallow ditches, low banks, flat open areas and shallow streams. Ride over five to seven cross-country obstacles at the appropriate speed (240-350 meters per minute). The majority of fences should be set at, but not exceed, 2’9”. Discuss performance with Examiner giving reasons for any disobedience.

B Answer: USPC currently offers 6 scholarships although many colleges offer pony clubbers scholarships as well. Applications are due March 31st. The Anson W.H. Taylor Memorial Scholarship offers the highest paying scholarship of $1500 awarded to the Pony Club member who has been active with and committed to efforts on behalf of land conservation.

December 2016:

D Question:  What is an “independent seat” and why would you want one?

C Question:  Describe the four foreleg conformation faults (from the side view).


D Answer:  An “independent seat” means that you can ride without using your hands for balance or to hold on.  Without an independent seat, you will get bounced around, and you may grab the reins to keep your balance.  Bouncy, unbalanced riders, tight, tense riders and riders who grab the reins for balance are hard on their ponies, even though they don’t mean to be.  To develop an independent seat, you must get used to riding in good balance and position and let your body go with your pony as he moves.   This takes practice, but it helps you ride better.  [USPC Manual of Horsemanship: D Level, p.50-51]

C Answer:  1) Standing Under Leg set too far back; most of the leg is behind the plumb line.  This puts the horse’s balance too far forward. 2) Camped Out in Front: Leg set out in front; most of the leg is [in front] of the plumb line. This puts more strain on the legs.  3) Over at the Knee: Knee is slightly bent, putting the lower leg too far back.  4) Back at the Knee (Calf Knee): Knee has a slight backward bend, with cannon bone slanting forward.  This puts extra stress on tendons and fetlock joints, and especially on the bones of the knee (carpal bones).  It may lead to bone chips or fractures of the carpal bones when the horse is worked at speed, over fences, or when he is fatigued. [USPC Manual of Horsemanship: C Level, pp.324-325]

November 2016:

D Question: In Show Jumping, red and white flags are used to mark the start, finish, and direction of an obstacle to be jumped. At all times and in all areas of the competition, the flags are to be passed through with which color on which side of the horse & rider?

C Question: During a USPC Show Jumping competition, who can make an inquiry or protest, when and in what order?


D Answer: 1. Entirely red flags (front and back of flags) and entirely white flags must be used to mark the following on the course;

The start line;

The side limits of the obstacles;

Compulsory turning points;

The finish line;

Obstacles used in the Schooling Area.

The flags must be placed so that competitors leave the red flags on their right and the white flags on their left. Competitors must pass all flags correctly, under all circumstances.

When flagging oxers, flags must be placed on the back standards and may be placed on both front and back standards, if enough flags are available.

If a flag limiting an obstacle is knocked down in a refusal, it must be replaced before the obstacle is jumped. The clock must be stopped while the flag is replaced and the penalty of 4 seconds applies according to the procedure laid down in Article 60, Time Penalties.

[USPC Handbook & Rules for Show Jumping 2008, Article 40, p. 15]

C Answer: In team competitions, only the Team Captain may make an inquiry or protest concerning penalties affecting their team. In individual competitions, only the competitor involved may make an inquiry or protest. No protest may be made without first having made an inquiry. Inquiries and protests must be made within a reasonable time of the occurring incident, but no later than 30 minutes after posting announcement of the applicable scores. Inquiries about perceived irregularities or incorrect scoring in the competition are to be directed to the Steward. In the event there is disagreement with the decision of the Steward, a protest may be made, in writing, to the Ground Jury. The decision of the Ground Jury may be appealed to the Appeal Committee, whose determination is final. Inquiries concerning Horse Management are to be directed to the Chief Horse Management Judge. In the event there is disagreement with the decision of the Chief Horse Management Judge, a protest may be made, in writing, to the Steward, with subsequent appeals to the Ground Jury and Appeal Committee, whose decision is final. In the case of questioning the qualifications of either riders or horses, such questions must be raised before the start of a competition. Inquiries or protests against the qualification of another team or competitor, after the start of the competition, will under no circumstances be allowed. Inquiries and protests are to be made in a polite and courteous manner; abuse of the procedures or rude behavior may be penalized, up to and including disqualification. [USPC Handbook & Rules for Show Jumping 2008, Article 21, p. 7]

October 2016:

D Question: Describe each of the four gaits (walk, trot, canter & gallop). Include details about the order of hooves hitting the ground during each gait, any moments of suspension and the average speed in miles per hour for each gait.

C Question: List the parts of the horse’s digestive tract in order as food passes through. Include the parts of the Large Intestine.


D Answer: Walk: 4 beats, no suspension, about 4 miles per hour – right hind, right front, left hind, left front. Trot: 2 beats, a moment of suspension, about 6 miles per hour – left front and right hind together, a moment of suspension, right front and left hind together, a moment of suspension. Canter: 3 beats, a moment of suspension, about 8 miles per hour – right hind, left hind and right front together, left front pushing off, a moment of suspension. Gallop: 4 beats, a moment of suspension, about 15 miles per hour – right hind, left hind, right front, left front pushing off, a moment of suspension. [USPC Manual of Horsemanship: D Level, pp.236-239]

C Answer: Food enters the horse through the mouth and proceeds through the body in the following parts: the Pharynx, the Esophagus, the Stomach, the Small Intestine, and the Large Intestine (Cecum, Large Colon, Small Colon, Rectum). It takes about 72 hours (three days) for food to pass all the way through the digestive tract and to be completely digested. Digestion can be affected by exercise and by excitement. This is why a pony should not be worked hard right after being fed. [USPC Manual of Horsemanship: C Level, pp. 185-187]