The International Equestrian Federation (FEI) has signed a pledge in Geneva to become a member of the International Gender Champions Network, an initiative committed to working towards gender equality in sport and organisations.
FEI President Ingmar De Vos joined four other sporting bodies - the International Olympic Committee, World Archery, the International Hockey Federation and the International University Sports Federation - to take the panel parity pledge and become an International Gender Champion.
International Gender Champions is a leadership network that was launched in Geneva in 2015 and more than 120 leaders of various organisations have taken the pledge.
Equestrian sport has "always been at the forefront of gender equality" it is claimed by the FEI, and is the only sport in the Olympic movement in which men and women compete together in the same competitions from grassroots up to elite level.
"Strict parity between men and women is at the heart of equestrian sport where male and female athletes compete as equals at all levels," De Vos said.
"The FEI is proud to champion the many female athletes, officials, trainers, veterinarians, grooms, administrators, and staff who are a vital part of our diverse multicultural community.
"Their talent, resourcefulness, and hard work contribute immensely to its constant growth and deserve our full support."
As part of the International Women’s Day celebrations in Geneva last week and its commitment to the International Geneva Gender Champions network, the FEI has made two individual pledges.
The FEI will offer male employees a one-month paid paternity leave following the birth of each child contributing to an improved work life balance and also made a commitment to increase female membership in FEI Committees.
"Gender equality in sports has always been an important issue, not only from the perspective of female athletes, but also women in top level positions in sport," FEI secretary general Sabrina Ibáñez said.
"Although gender equality has come a long way in the world of sport, at the FEI we are constantly looking at ways to improve.
"There should be no disparity in sports nor in the workplace.
"Gender equality on the field of play is one of the key assets of our sport and a value we are very proud of."