Horse riding, or equestrian sport, refers to the skill of training and riding horses.
An Overview of Equestrian
Horses can be used for riding, driving and vaulting (the sport of gymnastics on the back of a horse). Horse riding can include a huge range of activities such as dressage, jumping, pleasure riding and for therapeutic reasons. Horse riding is a sport that anyone, regardless of age, ability or background can have a go at!
The most enjoyable aspect to horse riding is the bond you create with a horse or pony whilst being outside in the fresh air, once you have mastered the basics there are a number of equestrian disciplines and equine sports you could specialise in as your confidence, skill and knowledge grows.
Sitting on a horse may not seem like an obvious form of exercise but it pretty much involves all the muscles in your body, between ensuring posture and balance, and controlling the horse.
Dressage is a competitive equestrian sport, defined by the International Equestrian Federation as the highest expression of horse training, where horse and rider are expected to perform from memory a series of predetermined movements.
Eventing is the ultimate equestrian challenge combining the skill of dressage, the precision of show jumping and the bravery and boldness of the cross country phase into one exciting activity.
Show jumping takes place over a course of obstacles, which can include verticals, spreads, double and triple combinations, usually with many turns and changes of direction.
Lesson prices vary across the country but an hour lesson can cost £25-£30.
The majority of riding centres and schools provide horses for use in any lesson or session, as well as essential equipment such as a riding hats and saddle. Other recommended pieces such as body protectors, jodhpurs and riding boots can be bought from equine retailers.
- It has been part of the Olympic programme since 1912, although until 1948 only men competed in the events as the riders had to be officers.
- Women have competed since the Helsinki Games in 1952.
Find Equestrian Activities Near You
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National Governing Bodies
- Contact Name
- British Equestrian Federation
- Contact Email
- Contact Telephone
- 02476 698871