Exactly how high are the courses?

Exactly how high are the courses?

The requirements for the jumping courses varies by level and discipline. Complete information on requirements is in the Awards Program Guidelines, but we have put the information here as well.

Combined Test Divisions Descriptions

The following are the descriptions of the course allowances for combined tests. Horse Trials should follow USEA guidelines, Eventing Derbies are recommended – but not required – to follow these course descriptions.

No combinations are allowed for these divisions. Allowable obstacles include:

  • Pre-mini amoeba: poles on the ground
  • Mini amoeba: 12” cross rails
  • Pre-amoeba: 18” cross rails
  • Amoeba: 18” cross rails and verticals
  • Pre-Starter (formerly Tadpole): 2’ cross rails, verticals and oxers
  • Starter (formerly Pollywog): 2’3” verticals and oxers 

The heights and combinations for the remaining divisions follow exactly USEA rules.

Beginner Novice: 

Show jumping is 9 to 11 obstacles at a speed of 300 mpm (meters per minute), with max height 2’7”. (The jumping course should be inviting and straightforward, preferably with lines of six strides or more and may include one double of two strides which may include only one oxer.)


Show jumping is 9 to 11 obstacles at a speed of 320 mpm, with max height 2’11”.

(The jumping course should be inviting and straightforward, preferably with lines of six strides or more and shall include only one or two doubles a double of two strides, which may include only one oxer. Each combination may include only one oxer.)


Show jumping is 10 to 12 obstacles at a speed of 325 mpm, with max height 3’3”. 

(The jumping course must include either (i) two doubles; or (ii) simple triple combination in the second part of the course with only one oxer. If the oxer is at the “b” or “c” parts of any combination it should be set on two strides. The course should introduce simple technical questions with some related jumps on five strides or more. If a liverpool is used, it must be built as a vertical over the center of the liverpool tray and a straightforward alternative jump must be offered.)


Show jumping is 11 to 13 obstacles at 350 mpm, with max height 3’7”. (Shall include two doubles, or a double and a triple combination, it should be more technical than the Training Level and may require lengthening or shortening of stride.)

Combinations Allowed in Stadium

Anything less than 6 strides (84 feet) is considered a combination. A combination set at 35 feet (two strides) is legal for levels Beginner Novice and higher. Per USEA rules, Beginner Novice and Novice may have one double combination, Training may have either two doubles or one triple. Levels below Beginner Novice that are considered Eventing tests, like Starter, and SEDA-specific divisions, which are not regulated in any way by the USEA (including Pre-Starter) may have a distance of four strides but will not be counted as A B combinations. Further, the lowest divisions, those below Pre-Starter will consist of single fences with distances no shorter than five strides in between.

What is Considered An Oxer

Our rules for Beginner Novice and above follow that of USEA  Pages 3 and 4.

In going with these same principles, those jumping 2’3 can have a top spread of 2’6” and base spread of 3’. Those jumping 2’ can have a 2’3” top spread and a 2’9” base spread.

However, the current cross country course that is relatively permanent on the Lagniappe property does not include anything below the Pre-Starter level, therefore the cross country course at the lowest level does include fences with the following natural shapes: oxers, hogsbacks, and verticals.

Lower Levels and Solid Cross Country Fences 

This is an issue specific to Eventing Derbies as all true combined training divisions that we have are no lower than Pre-Starter, so our divisions do not have the issue of being cross rail- and vertical-restricted. This is something anyone organizing the Derbies needs to work out.

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