Governing body allows dark breeches in competition, in ‘important and significant’ change

  • Riders are now allowed to wear black or navy breeches in British Riding Clubs (BRC) competition, in an “important and significant” move.

    The national organisation, which represents more than 28,000 people, is changing its rules across all disciplines with immediate effect, and it expects that other governing bodies may soon follow suit.

    “White, cream and beige are still accepted but the addition of black and navy as permitted colours is intended to help female competitors feel more comfortable and confident to perform at their highest level while they are on their periods,” a BRC spokesman said.

    It follows a US Equestrian rule change last year that allowed dark breeches to be worn in dressage, to give riders “more choices and flexibility, and making the dress code more welcoming to many riders, including those new to the sport”.

    Head of British Riding Clubs Rachael Hollely-Thompson said: “As an equitable organisation that exists to support its membership, changing the rules around the colour of breeches to be worn in competitions is an important and significant move as more sports look to adapt to be more relevant and more inclusive.

    “We expect more equine organisations to follow suit on this change over the coming months especially as the movement gathers momentum across all sports with people like Judy Murray and the Manchester City women’s football team championing the cause to ditch mandatory white sportswear.”

    • What do you think of this decision; should others follow suit? Send your thoughts to hhletters@futurenet.com, including your name, and nearest town and county, for possible inclusion on our letters page.

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