10 Best Horse Breeds For Showjumping: Top International Breeds

Thinking of advancing your showjumping career to a more professional level? You may need to get a new horse to take you there so you can jump higher, move up in levels, and become that legend you dream of becoming. But what horse breeds are the best for showjumping? These are the 10 best breeds in the world to be used for showjumping.

10 Best Showjumping Breeds Worldwide:

1. Hanoverian

HeightRoughly 16.2 hands high
WeightAround 1,400 pounds (635 Kilograms)
Acceptable Coat ColorsBlack, Bay, Grey, and Chestnut
Country of OriginGermany

The Hanoverian is one of my favorite showjumping horses. This is not only because are they beautiful, but they also have the natural jumping ability in them to take you to incredibly high levels in this industry. There are even some Hanoverians that have made it to the Olympics!

The Hanoverian is a German breed of horse that falls into the warmblood category. This horse breed is capable of clearing jumps of over 6 feet high!

In 1992, the Hanoverian breed alone took home 13 medals! This makes them one of the most decorated breeds in the Olympic games.

These quality horses are often exported to different countries from Germany because of the great demand for such talented horses.

2. Oldenburg

HeightBetween 16.2 and 17.2 hands high
WeightBetween 1,500 and 1,700 pounds (680 to 770 Kilograms)
Acceptable Coat ColorsBay, Black, Chestnut, & Gray
Country of OriginGermany

Like the Hanoverian, the Oldenburg is also a German horse breed known for its success in the show jumping industry. These horses are capable of competing in a number of different disciplines, but one of the main things they are known for is their ability to jump.

Jumping is what made the Oldenburg famous. With many of these horses competing at really high levels, many people soon began to desire this breed.

There are several of these horses who have made it to the Olympics and Grand Prix levels of competition and jumping.

The natural jump that these horses have is one of the things that makes them so popular.

This breed of horse is seen being imported to countries such as the United States for incredible prices reaching up to $150,000 US Dollars! The Oldenburg breed is admired globally and people are willing to pay great sums of money just to be able to call one of these horses their own.

3. Selle Francais

HeightBetween 15.2 and 16.2 hands high
WeightAround 1,300 pounds (590 Kilograms)
Acceptable Coat ColorsBay, chestnut, and black; black is extremely rare
Country of OriginFrance

After researching showjumping and learning of this breed’s great successes in that discipline, this breed of horse caught my attention. I was impressed by this french breed in its jumping career, especially after learning that the most expensive showjumping horse ever sold was a Selle Francais.

The most expensive showjumping horse ever sold was a Selle Francais gelding by the name of Palloubet D’Halong. This horse was sold for a whopping $12.8 million Dollars!

With the jumping talent of this horse known world wide, there is a great demand for this breed of horse. With many people wanting these horses, they are highly valued and can be very expensive. The average price range of the Selle Francais is between $40,000 and $120,000 (US Dollars), but some can cost much more.

Like the German horses I talked about previously, these French horses are also famous for making it to the Olympics multiple times.

4. Trakehner

HeightBetween 15.1 and 16.2 hands high
WeightAround 1,200 pounds (550 Kilograms)
Acceptable Coat ColorsAny solid color, especially bay, black, and chesnut
Country of OriginGermany

The sheer beauty of these horses is something that made this breed catch my eye. Not only do they stand out on the showjumping course, but they also are built for the job. Being such a popular competition horse not just in Germany, but all around the world, they can be seen clearing fences of all heights for crowds of thousands.

The stamina of these horses is hard to surpass. This is an important thing to have when showjumping because without stamina, your horse will slow and tire when nearing the completion of the course.

These powerful, well made horses are a great option when it comes to finding your next jumping horse.

5. Holsteiner

HeightBetween 16 and 17.2 hands high
WeightAround 1,500 pounds (680 Kilograms)
Acceptable Coat Colors Bay, chestnut, grey, and most other solid colors
Country of OriginGermany

The Holsteiner, a popular German breed, is a great option for a jumping horse. These gentle giants, though tall and bulky, move with such power and grace that everyone in the stands will be looking.

The conformation of this breed is amazing. Because of careful breeding, these horses now have such great conformation.

Because of such great conformation, temperaments, and jumping ability, these horses are often used to improve other horse breeds.

6. Dutch Warmblood

HeightBetween 15.3 and 17 hands high
WeightBetween 1,200 and 1,450 pounds (550 and 650 Kilograms)
Acceptable Coat ColorsBay, black, gray, and chestnut
Country of OriginThe Netherlands

This warmblood is not one to pass up! The Dutch warmblood is a breed of horse from the Netherlands that is prized for its athleticism, great conformation, and excellent jumping ability.

This breed carries many desired traits that people look for in quality competition horses. Many of these traits are inherited from the breeds that the base stock of certain breeds are created from and crossed with.

One of the most notable horses in the creation of the Dutch Warmblood was the Trakehner stallion Marco Polo. This horse, though smaller than normally desired, sired several world-class showjumping horses. Marco Polo sired a stallion named Marius. Marius was ridden by a professional British showjumper named Caroline Bradley who took him to become an international champion. Marius went on to sire one of the most successful showjumping horses in the world: Milton. Milton, a Dutch Warmblood, won over one million pounds in prize money (equivalent to $1,380,040 USD).

With Trakehner blood in this horse breed’s DNA, they poses many of the great qualities seen in that breed.

Dutch Warmbloods, because of how great these horses are, are often seen in the Olympics and Grand Prix level competitions for showjumping. The careful breeding of these horses is what makes them a ideal choice for a showjumping horse. Don’t pass this horse up!

7. Irish Sport Horse

HeightBetween 15 and 17 hands high
Weight Around 1,325 pounds (600 Kilograms)
Acceptable Coat ColorsAny solid color
Country of OriginIreland

The Irish Sport Horse is a famous breed of horse, especially in Europe, because of the breeds great success in the showjumping industry.

The famous showjumping horse of the 1970s, Boomerang, was an Irish Sport Horse. He won the hearts of audiences all over the world. His jumping ability was so great that he created great feats such as winning the Hickstead Derby 4 times, and winning a variety of other shows and competitions.

Boomerang’s success as a showjumper brought lots of attention to this breed and soon the numbers of these horses took off.

The temperament, skill, conformation, and beauty of these horses is what makes them such great competition horses.

8. Thoroughbred

HeightBetween 15.2 and 17 hands high
WeightAround 1,000 pounds (450 Kilograms)
Acceptable Coat ColorsAny solid color
Country of OriginBritain

Though the Thoroughbred is mainly known as a racing horse, many of these horses, once off the track, find work as showjumping horses and they do great at it!

If you are looking to get a showjumping horse that may need some extra training, a Thoroughbred is a great choice! Not only do these horses have the energy and stamina, they also have the skill to jump and are extremely affordable.

Many off-track Thoroughbreds (OTTB’s) are sold at really low prices, some being sold for as low as $2,000 US Dollars!

These talented horses do great in the showjumping arena, they have what it takes to be a success in this discipline.

9. Swedish Warmblood

HeightBetween 16.1 and 17 hands high
Weight1,000 pounds (450 Kilograms)
Acceptable Coat ColorsBay, gray, and chestnut; Some other solid colors permitted
Country of OriginSweden

A Swedish Warmblood is a horse from the European country of Sweden. This breed was originally intended to be used by the cavalry in battle which is why strength, bravery, and stamina were bred into this breed. 

Thanks to this breed’s exceptional strength and stamina, they find jumping pretty easy and they enjoy their jobs.

These horses are extremely versatile and can do nearly anything asked of them. Because of their size, build, and performance ability, these horses are only really used in different disciplines of the English riding style.

Showjumping is the Swedish Warmblood’s specialty. Because of the great successes of these horses in the showjumping arena, they are often used for competition at the Grand Prix level and even the Olympics.

10. Swiss Warmblood

HeightBetween 15.2 and 16.2 hands high
Weight1,000 to 1,200 pounds (450 to 550 Kilograms)
Acceptable Coat ColorsAny solid color including rare colors like roan, palomino, and white
Country of OriginSwitzerland

This breed of horse is an outstanding jumper. The Swiss Warmblood makes a great showjumping candidate because of how well it picks up its legs and its overall natural jumping ability.

Some Swiss Warmbloods have even made it to the Olympics and Grand Prix levels in show jumping.

This breed has wonderful levels of stamina that make it a good choice for larger courses with more jumps. This means that the horse is able to stay at a fast pace the entire course without wearing down by the end. That trait in jumping horses is greatly desired.

This breed is an excellent choice for use as a jumping horse because of its temperament, stamina, natural ability, and eye catching looks.

Hailey Sipila

Horses have been my passion ever since I can remember. At school, I was known as that weird horse girl, and I would read horse encyclopedias for fun. Over the years since those days, I have only learned more. My experiences with horses of a variety of breeds have taught me a lot. Now I want to share what I know with you!

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