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The pros and cons of horse riding

Written by Fiona

November 05 2020

Getting outdoors and staying active is important for our mental and physical health. If you are an animal lover, then you may have thought about taking up horse riding in order to spend more time outside and get fit. Horse riding can be a great way to stay healthy and it is a very rewarding sport, too.

Participating in horse riding consistently will improve a number of different and important skills, such as caring and building a relationship with an animal, while working on your fitness and balance.

Horse riding is also an expensive hobby that requires plenty of time, dedication, patience and money. So, if you have never been horse riding before or you have just started, then you may be wondering whether or not it is the right hobby for you. To help you to make your decision, here are the main pros and cons of horse riding. 

There’s a lot to learn about horses

There is a lot to learn about horse riding and this will be a pro or a con, depending on your dedication. If you love horses and you would like to work with them or other animals, then taking up horse riding as a hobby will help you to improve your knowledge about caring for these large mammals. It will help you to grow a wide range of skills in animal care, management and how to respect and work with large creatures.

You will also learn how they are built, how they think and how they react. If you ride the same horse on multiple occasions, then you will form a strong bond that will continue to grow. As your confidence and skills improve, so will your bond, and this will be shown positively in your performance. 

It takes a long time to learn about horse and horse riding but there are many rewards.

Improves your posture 

Maintaining good posture is important for a number of reasons. It reduces lower back pain and lessens tension in your shoulders and neck because your ligaments will be less stressed and less subject to overuse injuries. It will also decrease the risk of your joint surfaces wearing abnormally and improves your scapular and core strength.

In order to ride a horse properly, reduce the risk of injury and have full control and balance on your horse, then you will need to maintain a strong and straight posture without putting too much stress on your back. You can do some exercises to prepare yourself for this. 

For better flexibility 

As mentioned above, horse riding improves your posture and strength. It is a full-body workout, making it a highly effective method of exercise. As well as improving your posture and strength, horse riding regularly will help you become more flexible and will boost your balance, too.

When a horse rider is more flexible, they will be able to move with their horse in a flowing and supple motion. Having good hip and pelvic flexibility is crucial when it comes to effective riding. If you don’t have this, then you will rely on your knees and hands for balance, which can put unwanted strain on the horse.

It’s really fun! 

Riding a horse and creating a strong bond with such a large and elegant animal is great for your health and well-being while also being fun and enjoyable. One of the best ways to keep yourself interested and dedicated to a sport is to do something that you enjoy.

If you love animals and you are prepared for the challenges that you will face with horse riding, then you should definitely give this hobby a try. There are loads of different areas you can dedicate your time to, such as dressage, showjumping and cross country. Both require time and training, which will give you a chance to see if they work for you.

It’s expensive 

Horses are expensive animals to own and train. As an activity, horse riding is ranked as the second most expensive sport in the world. If you are not paying the expenses of owning a horse, then you will be paying towards their keep in your lessons. As well as paying for lessons, you will need to invest in the right riding gear. For great deals on horse supplies, horse tack and equestrian equipment, check out Equi Supermarket. Here, you can browse everything you need for horse riding for a great price and you can get familiar with the gear required for this unique and rewarding sport. 

It can be tiring

A lot of physical and emotional strength is required to ride a horse and it will wear you out, especially if you are dedicating a lot of your time to the sport. If you lead a busy lifestyle, then you will need to take this into consideration before taking up horse riding properly. You will need to have the strength both physically and emotionally to carry out a lesson successfully. If you are too tired or drained after a long day or week at work or school, then you will increase your risk of injuring yourself or your horse. You will also need to be prepared for the soreness and stiffness after a long day in the saddle. 

There are dangers

One of the main things that can put people off horse riding is the dangers associated with the hobby. Horses have their own minds and can act in an unpredictable way. A slight change in their normal environment or a noise they are not used to can spook them or make them feel panicked, which can put the rider and the horse at risk. If you are not on form during your lesson, then you may put yourself at risk of making a mistake. Sometimes, other people can be inconsiderate and put you in a bad situation, such as rude and impatient drivers that speed past you or honk their horns on the roads. 

Your financial and physical situation, as well as how much time you have on your hands will determine how well horse riding will suit your lifestyle and if you should take it up as a sport. If you think you can meet the needs of this hobby, then you should definitely jump in the saddle and try it for yourself. 

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