New Rules, Regulations & Standards: Effective from 2023 & 2024

Horse riding

Here's Everything You Need To Know

Is your riding equipment compliant with the latest 2023 and 2024 rules and regulations? Here, you'll discover everything you need to know about the changes and new requirements when preparing to take your horse to competitions.

Ensuring your riding hats and body protectors meet the standards can be perplexing. You might be unaware of the current standard of your riding equipment, especially if it's been in use for an extended period or hasn't been required at recent events. Now is the opportune moment to check, especially if you're planning to compete this year.

During competitions, an official will examine your riding hat and, if applicable, your body protector to ensure they adhere to the safety standards mandated by the discipline in which you are participating. Some competitions may affix a small tag to your riding hat after approval, a topic we'll delve into shortly.

2023 Riding Hat Standards

Starting from January 1, 2023, riding hats complying with the safety standards PAS015:1998 and SNELL 2001 will no longer be permitted at British Eventing, British Riding Club, Pony Club, and Riding for Disabled events. British Show Jumping reviewed their riding hat standards in early 2022, resulting in the withdrawal of these standards.

Accepted Riding Hat Standards include:

  • PAS 015:2011
  • VG1 01.040 2014-12 (must also have a BSI Kitemark or Inspec IC Mark)
  • ASTM F1163 2004a or 04a onwards (must also have a SEI mark)
  • SNELL E2016
  • AS/NZS 3838 2006 onwards (must also have an SAI Global Mark)

Once an official approves your riding hat at a competition, they may attach a small tag indicating it has been checked and meets the necessary safety standards. If your hat has tags from prior events, it must be re-tagged with a new colored tag in line with the updated safety standards for 2023.

Shop all Riding Helmets Here

2024 Body Protector Rules

Starting January 1, 2024, all body protectors with a 2009 safety standard will no longer be allowed at British Eventing, British Riding Club, and Pony Club events. While you can still use a 2009 standard body protector for leisure and other activities, check with the venue to ensure it complies with the updated 2024 safety standard before attending.

The only accepted safety standard for body protectors at British Eventing, British Riding Club, and Pony Club events from 2024 onwards is the BETA 2018 label. Currently, there are no new standards in effect, and no revisions are anticipated for the existing standards.

All our available body protectors are up to the current standard. Shop All Body Protectors Here.

Hi-Viz Standards

In addition to ensuring your riding equipment complies with the latest standards, it's essential to prioritize high-visibility (Hi-Viz) gear, even in well-lit summer conditions. Visibility is crucial whether you're on roads, trails, or enjoying a daytime ride. Hi-Viz attire, such as jackets or tabards for riders and leg bands for horses, enhances visibility for motorists, pedestrians, cyclists, and even low-flying aircraft pilots. LED lights on the widest points of you and your horse further contribute to safety. Many Hi-Viz garments meet BSI-approved standards like BSEN1150 or EN1150 for leisure riders, or the professional standard EN ISO 20471 (2013). Opt for recognized standards and consider Hi-Viz accessories like hat bands, certified to BSEN 13356 (2001), to ensure maximum visibility and safety during your rides.  

Dark Coloured Breeches

Eventing Ireland has joined most fo the UK's equestrian bodies, in allowing riders to wear dark breeches in competition. These include British Riding Clubs which was among the first to relax rules on legwear colours.

BD stipulates that breeches should be predominantly of a single, solid colour, but are permitting dark-coloured contrast seats for 2024!


For the first time, this year riders can compete without spurs in international competitions! The requirement for risers to wear 'dummy' spurs has been dropped by the FEI.

Spure, and dummy spurs, were already optional across national competition in the UK.

Whip Bans

Endurance GB, the national governing body for endurance riding, has banned the use of whips and elite level. Read more here.


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