Ridden TREC – Water Crossing

© Kim Stoddard


A natural body of water with sloping edges, flagged at the entrance and exit. As far as possible, the entrance / exit to the water must not have any distinct edges.

– Length: 4 m minimum
– Width: 3 to 5 m
– Depth of Water: 0.50 to 1 m approx.


To walk through the water, showing the willingness and boldness of the horse in forward movement and the correct rider aids.

Scoring This Obstacle

See also: Ridden Obstacles / Scoring

Effectiveness Faults (E Score) -3 per incident

BEFORE the obstacle:

– Running Out
– Error of Course Corrected
– Stepping Back
– Refusal
– Circling

IN the obstacle:

– Break of Gait
– Walk is Mandatory

Style Faults (S Score) -1 per incident.

– Irregular Forward Motion
– Incorrect Rider Position, Not Over the Stirrups and Light
– Loss of Balance of the Horse or the Rider
– Incorrect Rider Aids
– Horse Moving Sideways
– Rider Not Looking Forward
– Rider Interfering With Horse’s Balance

Penalties (P Score)

– Brutality (-5)
– Dangerous Riding (-5)
– Fall of Horse or Rider (Rider Excused)
– Leaving The Obstacle (-10)

Get The Score!

Rate these performances to test your knowledge of TREC Rules and Scoring.

Ridden TREC Obstacles / Scoring

Images © T. Thomas, K. Stoddard

– Scroll to the bottom of the page for Judge’s Scorecard –

Mini Clinic – Tips for Success

Preparation / Introduction

Accustom your horse to getting it’s feet wet and take advantage of opportunities to practice whenever they arise.

Avoid entering any body of water if you cannot see the bottom – unless you are sure that the footing is safe and that there are no hidden dangers.

Make it a habit to walk your horse through water crossings before stopping to let them drink or play. You don’t want to inadvertently teach your horse to automatically stop at water crossings.


Keep your eyes on the exit flags and ride with intention!

Trouble Shooting 

Horses learn from other horses. If your horse is reluctant to get its feet wet, try getting help from other riders with calm seasoned horses. Ask one to lead and one to follow encouraging from behind, and /or create a sandwich with one horse on either side and your horse in the middle.

Ridden TREC Obstacle Gallery

Next: Hedge













A. E Score: X / S Score: X / Total Score: 0*

B. E Score: X / S Score: X / Total: 0*

C. E Score: 4 Break of Gait / S Score: 0 / Total: 4

D. E score: 7 / S Score: 3 / Total: 10

*Walk is Mandatory