River Bend


Member CertificationThe USPC Standards are divided into separate levels to provide a progressive program in both horse management skills and riding skills.  Through an examination, a member is initially  tested at a certain level and then moves up one level at a time.

Examinations, (also called certificates or testings) are like a lesson, with the examiner sometimes providing advice and guidance. The examiner will give directions, following the written standard, and the candidate will behave as though taking a lesson.  There may be another person with the examiner, making notes as the testing progresses.

If taking a D1 or D2 rating, wear a shirt with a collar (polo shirt), riding pants (with a belt if the pants have belt loops), and riding or paddock boots.  The candidate’s hair should be neatly confined (tied back or braided).  Half chaps are acceptable, full chaps are not acceptable.  Candidate, pony, and all equipment should be very clean.  The candidate will bring the pony to the examiner, tacked up, and be ready to ride, with helmet in place. The examiner will evaluate the member, the pony, and the tack for cleanliness, proper fit of equipment, and suitability. The examiner will sometimes ask questions about horse management and knowledge at this time.  Then the candidate will mount the pony and proceed with the testing as directed by the examiner.

On the day of the testing, candidates should arrive early, well before the starting time.  This gives you time to do extra brushing or wiping off, if necessary.  Remember, the examiner is evaluating the candidate, not the pony. Candidates should be respectful, just as they would be to any instructor.  Candidates should relax, keep breathing, and smile.  If there is a question, candidates need to be polite but speak up.  If you make a mistake, ask to do it over.  If you fall off, get up and get back on the pony.  Mistakes and falls happen to everyone and don’t mean you have not met a particular standard.  A positive attitude always helps.

When the candidate has met the standard, he/she will receive a certificate.  This indicates that on the day of the testing, the candidate was able to perform all of the necessary riding requirements and met horse management expectations at the correct level. The member was well prepared and well turned out. When a candidate has met all but a few sections of the standards, the examiner may give the candidate an opportunity to retake those sections, This is especially true when the sections are horse management or knowledge sections.

Visit our Forms & Links page to download our Testing Application.