The TREC: equestrian hiking in a competition mode!

9 February 2023

The TREC, what is this equestrian discipline?


All riders know the classic olympics disciplines. We all have already practiced dressage, jumping or three-day eventing. But have you already tried the TREC?

The TREC event originated in France as a sport designed to test the skills of trekking guides working in the equestrian tourism industry. These skills include the ability to navigate a mapped route, manage the pace and safely maneuver obstacles that may be encountered during a ride or extended trail ride. The TREC is an equestrian discipline composed of three tests : Orienteering (POR), Trail Obstacle Courses (PTV) and Control of Paces (COP).

The name TREC is the acronym for the french name: “Techniques de Randonnée Équestre de Compétition”. In english it’s translates to “Equestrian Trail Riding Competition”.

The disciplines, a equestrian trail sport

  1. The Orienteering test or POR can be passed in team or single. It depends on the level of the competition. You will take a map with a route, a compass and you will see where the wind takes you.  Don’t forget your horse, it’s the most important part of the journey! Take something to eat because hiking can last a little. You can go for a 2 to 5 hours ride of 40km sometimes.You will have to respect a specific speed, will meet check points and sometimes little surprises.
  2. Then, the rider passes a second test : the Trail Obstacle Courses or PTV. He will have to do many different exercices. You can do some dressage, jump crosscountry obstacles or do some ethology : handling abilities, tree trunks and immobilities will be yours! The PTV is a test that requires rigor, calm and speed. Hurry, you are timed!
  3. You will end the day by the Control of Paces or COP . Everyone sits deeply in his saddle and tries to have the slowest canter (for the go) and the quickest walking pace (for the return). Be careful not to break in pace when your horse will see its friends.

Why practicing TREC?

Becoming versatile

You’ll have understand it, the TREC is an equestrian discipline which is extremely complete. It is the perfect match for nature lovers and versatile riders. You must not only be a good rider, you must have all the qualities that you may imagine: responsiveness, calm endurance and many others. You will have to be a multifunction and multidiscipline rider. Get ready to galop looking back at your teammates, a map in the hand; then one hour later, going through a U-shaped alley and jumping a one meter hedge.


Building a strong relationship with your horse

The TREC will bring you and your horse many benefits. You will develop your self-confidence and your trust in your horse. But the mutual trust is the most important one. This discipline will build strong links between the two of you. The TREC also desensitizes horses and learns them to be more relaxed towards daily hazards.

Therefore, ethology and horse foot work will make win some places on the podium and building a strong and balanced connection. Don’t forget that “trust is the invisible cement that leads a team to win“.

Recommended equipment:


  • Headlamp or Flashlight
  • Weather Appropriate Clothing
  • Cloth Soaked in Insect Repellent in Plastic Bag
  • Food and Water
  • Whistle
  • Multi-Tool
  • Compressed Sponge
  • Duct Tape
  • Personal (Epi-pen & Sunscreen)

The perfect TREC outfit

Gallops trough the fields are only waiting for you! What are you waiting for to have a try? You don’t miss of anything!

Oh Yes, how to forget this? You need THE perfect outfit to go into the woods.

Here is the Horse Pilot selection for your best trekkings.

What’s best than a X-Taylor horse riding trousers with an Essential Jacket to pace up and down the long wooded and craggy paths?


Equestrian Pants X-Taylor


We had a thought for you and your competition days. For the freezing mornings, start by wearing a warm Fahrenheit jacket. Getting out of the truck and between your tests, change it for a Long Raintech jacket that will keep you dry. There is nothing worst than finishing your competitions days completely soaked.

Equestrian jacket Horse Pilot
Finally, we finish the day with a heated E-Kelvin: sleeveless down jacket that will warm you after this long day.

Equestrian jacket E-Kelvin

You just have to try the TREC now that you have the perfect survival kit to start hiking!

See you soon to discover new disciplines and outfits that fit with them. 😊