Dressage Judges Education System

Learner Judges at all levels should create a Learners Activity Sheet for tests shadow judged as well as keep an up to date and signed log book. *

It is recommended that Learners keep all shadow judged test sheets should ZANEF request these for submission upon a request for progression.

All sit-ins and shadow judging must be done in person, at graded events.

Learners have to engage with the Judge at the end of each day of the event for assessment and discussion, prior to test sheets being handed out to competitors.

The Judge/ PGJ will assess the tests and give feedback in person, at the event. The Judge/PGJ will add comments and sign the log book.

Candidates must be a minimum 18 years of age.

To progress from their current to the next level, candidates must complete the following:

FEI Campus:

  1. Foundation Course for Dressage Officials
  2. Horse Welfare
  3. Competition Manipulation
  4. What is the FEI
  5. Horsemanship Study

FEI Group IX Academy

Modules available and applicable to the Judges current or next progression level.

(New candidates need to register through ZANEF Dressage Representative)

 To retain status as a Dressage Judge qualified through the ZANEF Education System, past and current, all Judges are required to:

  • Judge at a minimum 3 graded events with a minimum of 60 ridden tests per event, per year.
  • Complete FEI Campus and FEI Group IX Academy courses within the same year.

 In the event that a Judge was unable to do so, they may resume their judging duties the following year, at a level below the last graded event judged by themselves, then follow the Education System set out below to progress to the next Level.

Training Level Judge

  • Shadow judge 20 tests under minimum of 2 separate qualified Judges.
  • 20 Tests have to be within 5% of qualified Judges.
  • Written exam / multiple choice / 30 mins max on Dressage Rules. **
  • Peer review meeting to discuss and agree qualification.
  • ZANEF Technical Committee will send a qualifying letter to ZANEF to EXCOM approval.

Progression to:

First Level Judge

  • Shadow judge 25 tests under minimum of 2 separate qualified Judges.
  • 25 Tests have to be within 5% of qualified Judges.
  • Written exam / multiple choice / 30 mins max on Dressage Rules. **
  • Judge no less than 60 Training Level tests in graded competitions (in a minimum of 3 months) prior to request for progression to Second Level.
  • ZANEF Technical Committee will send a qualifying letter to ZANEF for EXCOM approval.

Second Level

  • Shadow judge 30 tests under minimum of 2 separate qualified Judges.
  • 30 Tests have to be within 5% of qualified Judges.
  • Written exam / multiple choice / 30 mins max on Dressage Rules. **
  • Judge no less than 60 First Level tests in graded competitions in a minimum of 6 months before requesting progression.
  • ZANEF Technical Committee will send a qualifying letter to ZANEF for EXCOM approval.

Third Level

  • Shadow judge 35 tests under minimum of 2 separate qualified Judges.
  • 35 Tests have to be within 5% of qualified Judges with positive feedback from PGJ.
  • Written exam / multiple choice / 30 mins max on Dressage Rules. **
  • Judge no less than 60 Second Level tests in graded competitions in a minimum of 6 months before requesting progression.
  • Must have ridden Third Level with minimum score of 60%. Records to be provided by the candidate.
  • ZANEF Technical Committee will send a qualifying letter to ZANEF for EXCOM approval.

Fourth Level, Prix St Georges and above

  • Shadow judge 35 tests under minimum of 2 separate qualified Judges.
  • 35 Tests have to be within 5% of qualified Judges.
  • Recommended a minimum of 12 months of judging graded prior to request for progression.
  • Have ridden to Fourth Level or PSG Grade. Records to be provided by the candidate.
  • ZANEF Technical Committee will send a qualifying letter to ZANEF for EXCOM approval.

*Log Book to detail dates of shows, number of tests, level of tests shadowed, signed off by Judge.

**Dressage Rules are inclusive of ZANEF, DSA and FEI Rules relating to your grade.