The Equestrian Events at the 1972 Summer Olympics in Munich included Show Jumping, Dressage and Eventing. All three disciplines had both individual and team competitions. The equestrian competitions were held at 3 sites: an existing equestrian facility at Riem for the individual show jumping and eventing competitions, the Olympic Stadium in Munich for the Nations Cup, and Nymphenburg, a Baroque castle, for the sold-out dressage. 180 entries, including 31 women, competed from 27 countries: Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bolivia, Bulgaria, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Denmark, German Democratic Republic, France, Federal Republic of Germany, Great Britain, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Netherland, Poland, Portugal, Soviet Union, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the USA. The youngest participant was Francoise Thiry from Belgium at 17 years old, while the oldest rider was Lorna Johnstone from Great Britain at 70 years old.
An outbreak of Venesuelan equine encephalitis broke out in Mexico before the Games, so the Mexican horses were not permitted into the host country. The IOC and FEI agreed to allow the Mexicans to lease horses in Germany for the show jumping and eventing competitions so that they may still compete. While this allowed the riders to attend the Olympics, the Mexicans had dismal results, including all four of the eventers being eliminated on cross-country.