What is American Hobby Horse? 


Hobby Horse_800x450_Fall

Welcome to American Hobby Horse at Tryon International Equestrian Center! Hobby horsing is the “safe, fun and affordable way to ride horses” and we want you to learn more about this exciting addition to competition during our fall season!

What is hobby horse? 

Competitive hobby horsing originates in Finland and has more than 10,000 active participants. Competitions have been seen repeatedly on mainstream media outlets and social media platforms, even earning coverage from networks and programs on ESPN and ABC, and in publications like The Wall Street Journal.

Riders participating in competitive hobby horsing – a toy consisting of a stick with a model horse head – perform and mimic the movements and technicality of horseback riding in the disciplines of show jumping and dressage, then translate that to their stick horse, where judges will mark and score their rounds. For participants competing in show jumping, courses are set with tricky combinations and patterns, similar to the show jumping competitions seen at TIEC throughout the year.

When are hobby horse competitions happening? 

The Fall Turf Tour Series competition will take place on Saturday, October 7th & Saturday, October 14th.  The championship competition will be held on Sunday, October 22nd, on the Derby Field.

Where are hobby horse competitions happening? 

Hobby horse competitions will be held in the front green space next to the General Store for our Fall “Turf Tour Series.” Rider check-in will begin at 5:00 p.m. and competition will begin at 5:30 p.m for the regular Saturday competitions. The Sunday Championship will begin at 11:30 a.m.

Where can I purchase a hobby horse? 

The General Store at TIEC will be carrying an assortment of hobby horses, which will be available for purchase throughout the duration of the fall.

What fence heights or divisions will be offered at TIEC? 

Divisions will be designated by age at various jump heights:

*Children may compete in all of the height levels within their age division. If there are more than 12 entries in a class we will split into 2 classes.

Are there any specific rules or regulations for participants? 

Riders must complete the entire course with their hobby horse and will incur one fault for every rail knocked down during their time on course. Results will be based on the time in which the rider completes the course, with the fastest rider taking first place. The top eight places will be awarded ribbons for each division at the conclusion of competition. Participants should wear comfortable, athletic attire and running shoes or tennis shoes.

How will placings be determined? 

The top eight combinations for each class designation will have the opportunity to qualify for the championship competition on Sunday, October 22, and points will be kept and recorded as follows:

1st place = 10 points
2nd place = 6 points
3rd place = 5 points
4th place = 4 points
5th place = 3 points
6th place = 2 points
7th place = 1 points
8th place = 0.5 points

Are there special awards or prizes? 

Special awards will be given each week to the Best Hobby Horse and the Best Turned Out Rider. These awards will be based upon the unique style of the horse and the rider’s outfits and chosen by the announcer.

Where can I sign up to compete? 

Please fill out the form below to register for competition. Entries MUST be in by 2 p.m. on the day of competition in order to participate. 

Where do I get more information?

For more information about hobby horse, please contact hobbyhorse@tryon.com.


Hobby Horse Registration

Fill out the following information to register as a competitor for the Hobby Horse Series at Tryon International Equestrian Center! Hobby Horses will be available for sale at The General Store throughout the duration of the series!