How to Prevent Injuries on Your Horseback Riding Adventures
Whether it’s your first time in the saddle or you’re a regular at the stables, horseback riding provides excellent exercise for the whole body. It takes great stamina and energy to ride though the efforts are worth it for the thrill of riding along trails whether at a speedy clip or a slower pace.
Horseback riding injuries usually happen when you try to break your fall off your horse. They can be mild such as bruising, strains, or sprains, or you can have fractures to your wrists, shoulders, and elbows. Very serious conditions can arise too like injuries to the pelvis, head, or spine.
To keep safe while horseback riding, make sure you take the following precautions.
– Wear the right attire
Sneakers aren’t the best choice here. You need sturdy, fitted leather boots with a low-profile heel. Clothing should be comfortable yet not too loose or it can get caught up on the riding equipment. And of course, don’t even climb up into that saddle without a proper horseback riding helmet.
– Get in the right group
When visiting stables to go riding, make sure that children and any beginning riders are with trained professionals who will guide them every step of the way. Often, safety stirrups are used for these groups that will break away if you should fall off the horse. Lessons are a must if you or your child have never been horseback riding before.
– Understand a bit about horses
Horses are beautiful and magnificent animals, but they also have their own reactions to what they see, hear, and smell. If a sudden noise startles them, they will run so keep your eyes focused on anything that could spook your ride. Watch their ears too. Horses move their ears in the direction of the sound they hear. And when they pin them back, they’re either angry or perceive something as a threat.
– Jumps and stunts are only for the experienced
For those that haven’t been riding before or only a few times in their life, trying to perform certain stunts will usually lead to an injury. It takes dedicated riding skill to work up to this level. Stick to the proper trails and listen to what the instructors tell you.
– Know what to do if you’re falling
Even with the best practices, be prepared for a fall. Should you realize it’s happening to you, roll to the side and away from your horse when you make contact with the ground.
– You can also become injured even when you’re not riding your horse
Horses can hurt you even if you’re not in the saddle. Don’t ever walk behind a horse as they can kick and knock you out. A better approach is at their shoulder. And if you’re giving a treat, keep your hand completely open and flat so it doesn’t accidentally bite your fingers.
One of the best ways to prevent injuries with horseback riding or any other sport is to keep on top of your fitness. If you need a personal trainer or have a previous injury that a physiotherapist can help you with, you can have them both sent to your home whenever you need that extra care!