Do you aspire to become an NFR barrel racing competitor? NFR is short for the National Finals Rodeo. One of the greatest barrel racing horse competitions in the world!

If you are series about becoming an NFR barrel racing competitor then you have come to the correct place. Barrel racing is an exciting and invigorating sport, and making it to NFR is the pinnacle goal for numerous barrel racers, including myself. Nevertheless, the path to NFR is not straightforward and demands extensive effort, commitment, and readiness. This article will furnish you with crucial advice and plans to make your NFR aspirations a reality.

Barrel Racing Rule and Regulations

Understanding the NFR barrel racing Qualification Process

The NFR is the biggest event of the year for rodeo contestants and fans, hosted by the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association (PRCA). Only the top 15 contestants in each event get to participate in this highly competitive event.

So, what does it take to qualify for NFR barrel racing? First and foremost, you need to compete in at least 12 PRCA-sanctioned rodeos throughout the year. Make sure to check with the PRCA to see which rodeos are eligible for NFR barrel racing qualifications. Then, you need to earn enough money to be in the top 15 in the world standings. The world standings are updated regularly and take into account the money earned at each rodeo.

If your goal is making it as an NFR barrel racing competitor, here are some tips to help you get there:

  1. Compete in as many rodeos as you can, but don’t compromise on quality. The more rodeos you participate in, the more opportunities you have to earn money and improve your world standing, but make sure to perform well too. Aim to place in each event for a better return on investment.
  2. Keep track of the world standings and your own position within them. This will help you stay on top of your progress and make any necessary adjustments to your strategy.
  3. Network with other contestants and rodeo organizers. This will give you valuable information and opportunities to learn about new rodeos, get tips, and even find out which rodeos offer the most money.
  4. Seek out sponsored opportunities. Sponsorship can provide valuable support on your journey to NFR. Reach out to companies and organizations in the rodeo industry to see if they have sponsorship opportunities available.

Qualifying for NFR takes hard work and dedication, but with the right approach and mindset, you can make it happen!

Have NFR dreams? We feel you… follow and stay tuned for continued helpful insight into following your NFR DREAMS!!!

Investing in the Right Equipment

Hey rodeo fans! This cowgirl has spent plenty of time in the arena and I can attest that having the right gear makes all the difference. So let’s dive into the two most important pieces of gear you’ll ever own: your trusty steed and your trusty saddle.

Finding Your Perfect Partner When it comes to barrel racing, your horse is your right-hand (or right-hoof) man. It’s crucial to find a horse that’s got the speed and agility to help you soar in the arena. Look for a horse with a strong work ethic, a positive attitude, and a body built for success. And remember, a horse that fits you like a glove is just as important as one that fits your needs.

Saddle Up for Success Your saddle is your trusty sidekick, so make sure you’re saddled up for success. A high-quality saddle should fit you and your horse perfectly, giving you the support and comfort you need to perform at your best. And for us barrel racers, a custom saddle designed specifically for our sport is the way to go. You’ll be able to stay balanced and in control, ready for anything the arena throws your way.

The Supporting Players There’s more to rodeo gear than just your horse and saddle. Don’t forget to invest in the essentials, like a helmet that fits snug and protects you in case of a spill. A protective vest is another must-have for safety’s sake. And let’s not forget about your stirrups and reins, the tools that help you steer your horse to victory. And last but not least, don’t skimp on your footwear. A good pair of rodeo boots is worth every penny, giving you the support and protection you need to stay on your feet.

Keeping Your Gear in Top Notch Shape So you’ve got your gear, but now what? Keeping it in top notch shape is key. Regular cleaning and oiling of your saddle and leather gear will keep them looking (and feeling) brand spanking new. And don’t forget to give all your gear a once-over before each ride, making sure everything’s tight and secure. Trust me, you don’t want any surprises in the arena!

Saddle fitting

Focusing on Your Fitness and Nutrition for NFR bar

Check out our 15-minute NFR Finals Rodeo Competitor workout! 

rel racing

Barrel racing is a physically demanding sport that requires its participants to be in top physical shape. If you’re serious about competing, it’s important to prioritize your fitness and nutrition to give yourself the best chance of success.  You will need to focus on 3 key ways to maintain a healthy and active lifestyle that will support your barrel racing performance.

Download our 15-minute guide

15-minute Exercises for barrel racers

Building a Strong Mental Game tailored to your goals of The National Finals Rodeo

the mental game of barrel racing is just as important as the physical game. And let me tell you, being confident and focused is the key to success. So, let’s talk about how to build a strong mental game that’ll make you feel like a boss on horseback.

First things first, visualize your success! Imagine yourself riding like a pro, Making those turns like a rotisserie chicken. Trust me, this helps you feel more prepared and confident when you get on that horse.

Next, let’s talk about self-talk. It’s time to give yourself a pep talk, cowgirl style. Ditch the negative thoughts and switch ’em up with some positive affirmations. Remind yourself of your strengths and all the times you’ve kicked butt in the past.

Finally, surround yourself with positive and supportive people. Find yourself a coach who believes in you, family and friends who support you, and don’t be afraid to ask for help when you need it. Trust me, having people in your corner will make a world of difference in your mental game.

So, get your game face on, stay confident and focused, and let’s make that NFR dream a reality!

Practicing Consistently and Perfecting Your Techniques

If you wanna be a top-notch barrel racer and fulfill your NFR dreams, you gotta have determination and consistent practice. I’m talking about putting in the time to hone your skills, work on your weaknesses, and make them your strengths. You know what they say, “practice makes near perfect.”

And don’t just take my word for it, see for yourself! Get a buddy to film your run and watch it over and over again like a never-ending Netflix series. You’ll be amazed at how many tiny mistakes you’ll find and how much faster you can correct ’em.

Perfecting your techniques is a journey, not a destination. You’ll never stop learning and improving, and that’s what makes this sport so darn exciting. Just remember, it takes time and effort, but trust me, the end results are worth it. So grab your horse, your gear, and your sense of humor, and let’s get to perfecting those techniques!

Barrel Racing Feel and Timing

Staying Focused and Committed to Your NFR Barrel Racing Goals

Finally, staying focused and committed to your NFR barrel racing goals is crucial to making your dreams a reality. Stay motivated and dedicated, even when you face setbacks or challenges. Keep your eye on the prize, and never give up on your dreams.

Making it to the National Finals Rodeo is not easy, but with the right preparation and mindset, you can make your barrel racing dreams a reality. Remember to focus on the essential tips and strategies outlined in this article, and stay dedicated and committed to your goals. Good luck on your journey to NFR!


Who won NFR Barrel Racing 2022? 

Hailey Kinsel did! Congratulations Hailey and DM Sissy HayDay!