Walk-Trot Classes: A Good Place to Start

Walk-Trot Classes: A Good Place to Start

It doesn't matter if you're a kid or and adult, riding a green horse or a seasoned pro, AQHA walk-trot classes are a good place to start.

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Walk-trot classes just might be the right place for you if you’re just getting started in AQHA competition or starting a partnership with a new horse.

AQHA Walk-Trot Classes

Walk-trot is offered for both youth (18 and under) and amateur (19 and over) classes. At their discretion, show management may offer the following walk-trot classes:

  • Western pleasure
  • Horsemanship
  • Trail
  • Hunter under saddle
  • Hunt seat equitation

Walk-Trot Eligibility

To compete in walk-trot classes, an exhibitor must be Level 1 eligible in that particular class. Learn more about level eligibility.

More to Know About AQHA Walk-Trot Classes

  • An exhibitor may earn any number of points and continue in the walk-trot or progress to the Rookie level in their respective class at their own pace. Walk-trot points do not affect exhibitor or horse eligibility in any level or division.
  • Walk-trot classes can only be held as an all-age class (amateur or youth) and cannot be split out into youth age groups or Select. 
  • Only one horse/rider combination is allowed per walk-trot class. 
  • If a rider is entered into a walk/trot class that rider cannot show in the corresponding loping/cantering class at that show. However, that combination can switch back and forth between the different shows.
  • No horse may cross enter walk-trot western pleasure and ranch riding or walk-trot western pleasure and Versatility Ranch Horse ranch riding at the same show, regardless of division.
  • No horse may cross enter walk-trot trail and ranch trail or walk/trot trail and VRH ranch trail at the same show regardless of division.
  • There is no year-end high-point and it is not a world show class. 
  • Walk-trot points do not count for performance halter qualification. 
  • The same rules apply in walk-trot classes as apply in the corresponding class, except loping/cantering is prohibited in both pattern and rail work. 

A Walk-Trot Success Story

Misty Hobbs of Canyon, Texas, has been around horses most of her life. But when the amateur found a green mare, Ask My Age, and was excited to start showing 2019, she knew walk-trot classes were the safe fit for them. 

Walk-trot classes are enticing because not every horse or rider or horse-and-rider team can handle the pressure of three gaits.

"For me, it was awesome because if there wasn't walk-trot, we probably wouldn't have show this year, because we're just not ready for all three gaits," the amateur exhibitor noted. "These classes give people a really nice place to start and it allows us to get comfortable in the show pen and not have a lot of things to think about at once."