Saturday, October 15, 2016

Several legitimate reasons why horseback riding is actually a sport.

      Well, because the main sport I am participating in currently is horseback riding, I have been getting comments from some friends about how it doesn't take any work or is a useless sport and is just plain dangerous. So, because riding actually takes more work than sitting down, contrary to many beliefs, I figured it was time I wrote down a handy list that I can have people refer to with their smart phones when I get told horseback isn't a sport. So, without further ado, several reasons why horseback is actually a sport:
    No, I do not ride western, even though it looks that way from my hand position. I was taking the picture with my other hand, and still had to keep my pony under control.

    At the canter on Dijon.
  1. To ride a horse in any way, shape, or form, you are going to have to be physically exerted in some way or many ways. Riding a horse, and especially riding one well, is going be a lot of work. Even if you just lead a horse around, you are going to be wearing yourself out, mostly because horses are strong animals that love grass and can be very stubborn.
  2. Horse back riding is actually classified as a sport. Yerp. Shocker.
  3. Horses are super awesome animals that you get to have a bond with while you are with them. They are also highly intelligent. While this is not necessarily a reason why horseback is a sport, it still says horseback is awesome.
  4. Horseback riding is dangerous. But I guess living is the most dangerous thing ever because you are constantly risking death. Yes, I came up with that one, feel free to quote me ;). While horseback is a dangerous sport, it is one of the most rewarding, especially when you finally get your horse to go over a high jump at a steep turn or get a perfect leg yield that didn't need any reigns. You probably have absolutely no idea what I am talking about, but if you do, props to you! If you don't, you should go learn how to ride. Cuz it's fun. And looks awesome.
  5. You have a game plan. Or, at least a plan. Well, you should have a plan and you should stick to it. I am not very good at this. I accidentally forget the course all the time and end up cantering verticals on Lacy that I wasn't supposed to jump, let alone canter to. Especially on Lacy, cuz she is a horse that I am fairly new to riding. But, most people do have plans and they do stick to them. 
  6. You end up very sweaty after a ride. When you get back from horseback, you have to shower immediately, because not only have you sweated like crazy for an hour and a half, but you have been sitting on the back of an animal, so you also smell like said animal. But, compared to most animals, horses actually smell good to me... and to everyone else I know who rides. Other people seem to not like the wonderful aroma of hay and horse, which boggles my mind.
  7. You end up super sore afterwards. I used to have a coach in soccer that was in the army. We were very sore by the end of those two hours. That was nothing compared to how I feel the day after horseback. I can't even sit with one leg crossed on top of the other, my leg muscles are so sore. 
  8. It is super rewarding and I wouldn't give it up for anything. Horseback is insanely fun and isn't terribly hard to learn. It takes time and effort, but it is all well worth it when you are able to understand how your horse can understand your voice commands. And once you learn to canter bareback (which I did for the first time this week), you just feel super accomplished because you stayed on an animal that is going pretty fast without having something to keep you on its back.
       Okay, so you may not be convinced, so I am just going to show you random pictures of horses that I have ridden.

Riding Lacy :)

Lacy grazing after a long lesson. 

Chessie. Yeah, I know his halter is too big. It is actually for Lacy, but this was taken a while ago and the halter was the only one I could find.

     Now, I have ridden two other horses/ponies, but I could not find any pics of them. One of them has moved from our farm, so we will not get to see any of her. She was the first horse and the first mare I ever rode, and her name was also Lacy, but she was called grey Lacy, and the Lacy I ride now was Brown Lacy. The pony's name is Tucker Bell, and he is a tiny welsh pony that I rode for less than a month, but I still love that little cutie. So, I hope you enjoyed this blog post and maybe have a new perspective on horseback riding.