Padded whips are to be introduced to thoroughbred horse racing.
The New Zealand Thoroughbred Racing Board wants use of the whips to become mandatory by the start of the racing season in August.
The board has already received feedback from the jockeys' and trainers' associations and has approved a formal consultation process on the proposal.
Board chief executive Paul Bittar says the move recognises the importance of horse welfare.
Mr Bittar says rules on how jockeys use whips will not change.