According to top dressage rider Sarah Higgins, it's the preparation you do before a show that can see you scoring higher dressage marks and being in the ribbons. She says that planning ahead, getting yourself organised and doing the right work with your horse will help you achieve success.

1. Plan Ahead

Sit down one month before your show and plan your build-up. This will include lessons, training at home and booking in visits from the farrier and physio etc. 

2. Know your test

Avoid a last minute panic by learning your test well in advance. This doesn't mean over-riding the test, but being familiar with what you'll need to do and practising the separate movements.

3. Get your kit sorted

Think about what clothing and kit you'll need and have it ready. Make sure it's clean and always try any new items before the big day - you could pull a gleaming pair of riding boots out of their packaging to find you can't use your leg properly in them!

For more great tips on boosting your dressage scores, see the May issue of Horse magazine, which is on sale now!

Also in this issue are must-read tips for keeping your horse at a healthy weight and avoiding laminitis, three great ways to improve your horse's suppleness and handy hints for anyone going cross-country this season.