Members' Code of Conduct

The British Dressage Code of Conduct is as following:

The Disciplinary Panel and Judges Complaints Panel of British Dressage are appointed by the Board to consider complaints of misconduct or breaches of these rules or Codes of Conduct by Members and Judges and if necessary to impose appropriate penalties. In this context, misconduct is defined as failure in the observance of provision of the Memorandum or Articles of British Dressage, Code of Conduct, regulation or bye-law made by the Board or any other competent authority. Members remain subject to such provisions when participating in any event affiliated to a foreign national federation or to the FEI. The Chief Executive or Judges Complaints Panel will hear any complaint pursuant to these Rules.

In this Code of Conduct BD People and BD Person means officers, staff, BD affiliated show organisers, selectors, judges, stewards, sponsors and all other volunteers acting on behalf of British Dressage - who are all required to be Members of British Dressage; and Members means members of British Dressage in all membership categories.

Please note that where a member has a registered parent, guardian or carer they are also bound by this Code of Conduct. Any breaches of these rules or Codes of Conduct by a parent, guardian or carer associated with a member of British Dressage will result in that BD member being subject to the same disciplinary procedures, including imposing penalties or sanctions, if deemed appropriate.

No member of British Dressage shall:

a) Conduct themselves in a manner which is offensive to the public.

b) Argue, threaten, behave with incivility/contempt or use abusive language towards any BD People under any circumstance.

c) Ill-treat in any way a horse or pony under any circumstance.

d) Misuse or use excessively a whip, spur or the bit.

e) Deliberately use the action of the bit as a means of punishment and/or misuse any item of saddlery in a manner likely to cause pain or discomfort to the horse or pony.

f) Knowingly allow, or otherwise, a horse or pony for which he is responsible as owner, lessee, authorised agent, or rider to compete in any dressage competition under the influence of a prohibited substance. Such member shall be in breach of this rule if the analysis of a sample taken from the said horse or pony shows the presence in its body fluids of any quantity of any substance, which is either a prohibited substance or one of its metabolites or a substance which cannot be traced to normal and ordinary feeding and which by its nature is likely to affect the performance of the horse or pony in competition.

g) Unreasonably refuse to allow a horse or pony which has competed or is about to compete in a dressage competition to undergo any properly authorised test or examination if requested to do so by an officer of British Dressage or the show organising committee. Refusal to allow a test for a forbidden substance constitutes a violation of the prohibition on forbidden substances and as such is of equal gravity to the finding of a forbidden substance.

h) Conduct themselves in a manner which is or may be in breach of the Memorandum and Articles of Association or any rule, regulation, bylaw or Code of Conduct of British Dressage. A member shall be in breach of this rule in the event that any person who assists, represents, or acts on behalf of or in the employment of such member during the course of a show affiliated to British Dressage, to the FEI or to any foreign national federation, conducts himself in such a manner that were they a member of British Dressage they would them self be in breach of any of the provision of any rules.

i) Conduct themselves in a manner detrimental to the character and/or prejudicial to the interests of British Dressage.

j) Make, either orally or in writing, to an officer of British Dressage or of an affiliated show or a third party, a statement on any matter covered by the rules which he knows to be untrue.

k) Compete as owner or rider in a competition for which the horse or pony and the rider are not fully and properly eligible pursuant to these rules.

l) Exercise any of the rights or privileges of membership while suspended there from, nor assist represent or act on behalf of any other member of British Dressage at a show affiliated to British Dressage, to the FEI or to any foreign national federation while suspended from all rights and privileges of membership.

m) Compete as a rider in any dressage competition with a Prohibited Substance or its metabolite or mark in his/her system.

A rider, by becoming a member of British Dressage, is deemed to have agreed:

(1) To be bound and to comply strictly with the BEF (British Equestrian Federation) AntiDoping Rules for Human and Equine Athletes (without prejudice to any other antidoping rules applicable to him/her);

(2) To submit to the authority of the BEF and/or of the UK Anti-Doping

Organisation (“UKAD”) to apply, police and enforce those Rules

(3) To provide all requested assistance to the BEF and UKAD (as applicable) in the application, policing and enforcement of those rules, including (without limitation) cooperating fully with any investigation, results, management exercise, and/or proceedings being conducted pursuant to those rules in relation to any potential AntiDoping Rule Violation(s); and except where the FEI has jurisdiction over the potential

Anti-Doping Violation.

(4) To submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of any first instance tribunal convened under those rules to hear and determine charges and related issues arising under those rules;

(5) To submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of any appeal tribunal and/or Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) Panel convened under those rules and determine appeals made pursuant to those rules; and

(6) Not to bring any proceedings in any court or other forum that are inconsistent with the foregoing submission to the jurisdiction of the first instance tribunal, the appeal tribunal and CAS.

 A copy of the rules can be found on the BEF website at

If a rider has a medical condition that requires them to take any Prohibited Substance, they may be able to obtain a Therapeutic Use Exemption Certificate (TUE). Further information on TUEs can be obtained either direct from the BEF ( or by contacting British Dressage International Office

n) Unreasonably refuse to give a sample of his or her body fluids for the purpose of control of prohibited substances.

o) Allow a stallion for which he/she is responsible as owner, lessee, authorised agent, or rider to compete or be prepared to compete, in any dressage competition without taking adequate precautions to ensure other members of the public are not put at risk of injury as a result of the actions of any horse, stallion or handler. Persons handling stallions should be aware of stallion management in public places.

p) Paragraphs a, c, d, e, h, i, j, m, n, p and q of this rule shall apply in any circumstance whether or not the offence or offences occur at a BD show/run event or elsewhere.

q) Members shall not behave in a way which may be considered inappropriate to BD People. Inappropriate behaviour includes the use of foul language or acting in an intimidating or threatening way.

r) Members shall not discriminate on the grounds of race, colour, religion or belief, disability, sex, marital status, age, sexual orientation, nationality and ethnic or national origins.

s) Members shall not post inappropriate words or images on social media that can be deemed offensive, intimidating or threatening to BD People. See the BD Social Media Policy.

t) Unreasonably fail or refuse to assist the Disciplinary Panel, Judges Complaints Panel or the Chief Executive in their investigations of complaints or misconduct by members of British Dressage.

u) Having indicated his/her availability or selection for an official British national team, unreasonably fail or refuse to compete in such a team if selected.