As we storm towards the end of the year and into October, have you renewed your British Riding Club membership yet? Or perhaps you’re still deciding whether to join your local riding club? Here’s why you should get involved...

1. On your doorstep

With more than 500 riding clubs situated around Britain you are certain to find a club for you and your horse without having to travel too far.

2. It won’t break the bank

While joining affiliated bodies can be costly, especially if you want to participate in more than one discipline, British Riding Clubs offer membership from around £30 annually.

3. Move out of your comfort zone

Joining a riding club gives you access to a whole host of different disciplines from showjumping, dressage and eventing to activities you perhaps haven’t had the opportunity to try previously including endurance and style jumping.

4. Save the pennies

Membership offers discounted training sessions run by your local riding club and often discounted entry fees for local competitions allowing you to train and compete as much as you like.

5. Grants are available

Furthermore your local area representative can apply for two fantastic Area Training Grants every year benefiting riding clubs and members in the area. These grants previously have been used for training clinics, demo evenings and team building days.

6. Get in the competition zone

With a variety of Area Qualifiers across the country you and your team might be aiming for the British Riding Clubs Teams of Three Showjumping with the exciting final being held at the Royal International Horse Show at Hickstead. And for the really ambitious there is the European CIC** Championships. The British team is selected from members of British Riding Clubs and last year we saw team Britain take team silver and individual gold at Helvoit in the Netherlands. With the next European CIC** Championships being held in Belgium in 2017… could your riding club be putting you forward?

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7. Access to top trainers

For those of you perhaps just starting out in your competition career and wanting to give cross-country a go then how about the World Class Grass Roots Cross-Country Training? It aims to give grass root riders access to some of the countries best trainers including Ben Hobday, Harry Meade and Karen Dixon to name just a few. And what’s more, sessions cost from £25 to £35 offering fantastic value for money.

8. Stay involved — without getting on a horse

Perhaps competing isn’t on your agenda and you just want to enjoy the sport from the ground. There is also the British Riding Club Volunteers’ Club offering a huge range of benefits and rewards for those much appreciated volunteers to help out at the British Riding Club events and championships.

Don’t miss the full report from the Verdo Horse Bedding British Riding Clubs Dressage to Music Championships in the 13 October issue of Horse & Hound magazine