HomePony Know HowRiding TipsHackingGiving the right signals when riding on the road

Giving the right signals when riding on the road

Posted in Hacking

Very few of us can hack out without coming across a road, and knowing the correct signals to communicate with other road users is mega-important. Here are the must-know signals you need!

Signalling to turn

It’s important to let cars know where you’re going with road signals so they can give you plenty of space. Position yourself on the left-hand side of the road, so you’re moving in the same direction as the cars. To turn left, hold your reins and whip (if you’re carrying one) in your right hand, and hold your left hand out straight at 90°, so it’s parallel to the ground. Keep your arm out until just before you need to turn, then take up your reins again and make your manoeuvre. To turn right, you’ll need hold the reins and whip with your left hand and signal with your right in the same way.


Never make a manoeuvre on a road with only one hand on the reins. You won’t have as much control over your pony and it could be dangerous.

Top tip

Always give your arm signals in plenty of time to let cars know what your intentions are.

Asking cars to slow down

To ask a driver to slow down, hold out your arm nearest to the middle of the road at 90° (just like you would when you signal to turn) and slowly wave it up and down.


To ask a vehicle to stop, take your reins in one hand and hold the other arm out straight in front of you with your palm facing towards the driver. Hold your arm like this until the driver has stopped.

Thanking drivers who pass wide and slow

It’s important to thank drivers who slow down and give you lots of room. To say thank you, hold your reins in your left hand and hold your right hand up so your palm is flat and facing the driver. Holding your hand like this for a couple of seconds is enough.

To thank a driver approaching from behind you, briefly glance over your shoulder to see when the car is approaching, and hold your hand towards the driver to thank them as they approach you but before they overtake you. Make sure both your hands are on the reins as the car passes you, though.

Top tip!

If you’d rather not take your hands off of your reins, you can thank drivers by smiling, giving them a nod and saying thank you instead of using a hand signal.

Top tip!

Only take your hands off your reins if it’s safe.

Did you know?

The correct order to signal is:

1. Look to check road is clear

2. Make your signal

3. Look again to check the road is still clear – never cross or turn onto a road if cars are coming just because you’ve signalled.

4. If the road is safe, maoeuvre.

Your Comments

3 responses to “Giving the right signals when riding on the road”

  1. Alice loves2 ride 77 says:

    Very helpful!

  2. horse girk says:

    The signals are a bit like a bike

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PONY Magazine December 2020

December 2020

Latest Issue
This Esme riding journal