Horse Riding Safety
It is true
that the unpredictability of horses inserts an element of danger
into horse riding which has been a favorite sport of mankind for
millennia. On the other hand, one of the reasons why riding can
be a comparatively safe sport is because horses are not suicidal
and are unlikely to obey stupid commands. A motorcycle reacts
the same if you hit the accelerator when you should have hit the
brake. Horses often instinctively avoid spots where there is
quicksand and other hazards. They have a nose for danger and
have often saved their riders by warning them of the presence of
enemies or predatory animals. Horses also have wonderful night
vision and an amazing memory for trails even if they have only
traveled them once in the last ten years. I have had horses
which I swear would move so as to get under me if they felt me
losing my balance. Their legendary instinct for direction is
nearly as good as a homing pigeon. All these equine qualities
enhance horse riding safety.
difficult to get comparative statistics on accident rates in various
kinds of sports. Certainly some kinds of riding like steeple chasing
and riding broncs are ridiculously dangerous. That kind of thing has
little to do with the accident rate in trail riding or dressage. In
any case, one can greatly increase horse riding safety and minimize
accidents by following a few simple rules.
Right Horse –
I have too often heard tales about beginner riders being over
mounted and scared off horses for life. It usually happens with
people who have their own horses and think it would be fun to take a
friend on a first ride without reflecting on the needed skill. This
often ends with a runaway horse, a terrified rider and a bad fall.
The same kind of thing often happens on a riding tour as well when
riders get in over their heads and have overestimated their ability.
Skiers get into trouble if they make their first run on a steep
advanced slope. Riding is the same.
These riders in Ireland have hard hats on and are
taking horse safety seriously.
which fit properly are as basic a precaution for horse riding safety
as snapping on a seat belt and there is no question about the fact
that they prevent many head accidents. A broken leg or an arm is
usually little more than a temporary inconvenience, but head
accidents can cause permanent damage. They are not that onerous to
wear and if you are enjoying your life, you would be well advised to
have one on at all times when you are riding.
have caused countless accidents and they cannot always be avoided,
but many accidents occur because of an object like a raincoat or a
handsome Marlboro hat falling off the horse or rider in front. If
care is taken to tie objects securely on the saddle and riders wear
hard hats this kind of accident can be greatly reduced. A good ride
leader can usually avoid situations where a horse is likely to shy
or at least warn riders of a danger.
can allow a saddle to turn, especially with a rider whose balance is
not perfect. Cinches should always be checked just before and
immediately after mounting, then again after a few minutes as they
tend to loosen as they warm up and the saddle pads adjust to the
pressure of the saddle.
For more information see Equitours Worldwide Riding Vacations.
Bayard Fox has
written a much more complete article on the main causes of accidents
and how to avoid them. For more information see Equitours Worldwide Riding Vacations. horse safety. Bayard has ridden for over 70 years, enough miles to
circle the globe many times, and has seen countless accidents.
© Copyright 2005-2008 Bayard Fox and Equitours, Ltd.
This article is licensed under a
Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 2.5 License.
| Asia | South Pacific | Europe
North America |
& South America
Design by WeDesignWebs.Com
Copyright © 2004 RidingWorld.Com