Founded in 1966, the National Reining Horse Association (NRHA) is an organization dedicated to the promotion of the reining horse. It serves as the standard setting body for the sport of Reining worldwide. Check out our Historical Milestones and Growth Statistics.
NRHA MISSION STATEMENT:
Title: This organization is incorporated under the laws of the State of Oklahoma and shall be known as the National Reining Horse Association, and shall at all times be operated as a not for profit association in accordance with the laws of the State of Oklahoma and the United States of America.
Objective: To promote and encourage development of and public interest in agriculture and ranching through the promotion of public Reining Horse Shows; the development of suitable and proper standards of performance and judging intended to govern all Reining Horse Contests sponsored and approved by the National Reining Horse Association; to encourage the development and breeding of better Reining Horses; and to develop and disseminate informational material deemed desirable to provide contestants and spectators a better understanding of a proper performance of the Reining Horse in the show arena.
The National Reining Horse Association, the international governing body for the sport of reining, is a nonprofit association dedicated to promoting and encouraging the development of and public interest in the sport of reining. The focus is on developing and maintaining suitable standards of performance and judging and in providing a fun filled, family-oriented atmosphere.
WHAT IS REINING?
Reining is a judged event designed to show the athletic ability of a ranch type horse within the confines of a show arena. In NRHA competition, contestants are required to run one of ten approved patterns, included in the NRHA Handbook.
Each pattern includes small slow circles, large fast circles, flying lead changes, roll backs over the hocks, 360 degree spins done in place, and exciting sliding stops that are the hallmark of the reining horse.
The NRHA Judging System is recognized as the leading format for judging an equine event that combines technical and stylistic elements coupled with consideration of "degree of difficulty". Many segments of the equine judging discipline have openly embraced the NRHA Judging System.
THE REINING ESCALATION
NRHA has flourished over the past 10 years. From 1997-2007, NRHA grew over 40% to over 15,000 members and from 265 NRHA approved shows to 700. In 1997, a total of 1.3 million dollars were paid out in NRHA competition and in 2006 NRHA paid out over 10 million dollars in competition purses.
The NRHA Executive Board has aligned with other world wide equine associations to accomplish common goals and to move the sport of Reining into the international arena. Gaining acceptance as the first Western Discipline of the United States Equestrian Team (USET) marked an important milestone in the history of Reining, the western horse, and the NRHA.