Horseback riding has been popular since ancient times. Horses have a history of sharing a bond with humans, they have been used for transportation, battles, and sport for thousands of years. Today, horse riding is mostly done for sport and the three main horseback riding events including; horse racing, show jumping, and dressage. We will not discuss any of these three events, we will discuss horseback riding as it relates to adventure travel.
Depending on the destination you visit, the horseback riding experience can differ considerably according to the horse breed and your environment. Some unique breeds include Mongolian horse and the famous Icelandic horse who is shorter and has its own gaits!
Horse riding can be done in any environment, from flat wetlands to beaches, deserts, and mountains, all of which provide a different feel.
WHY WE LOVE
We love horse riding because it causes a plethora of emotions. Horseback riding can be exhilarating, nerve-racking, and freeing, all at the same time. It is an experience that gives you superpowers and connects you to one of earth’s most majestic creatures. Horse riding can be relaxing, even therapeutic. Working with animals test you in many ways and offers you the chance to practice patience and agility. Many studies have shown horseback riding to be beneficial to cognitive and psychological processes.
Working with a live animal is a complex and rewarding process, each ride provides a different experience than the last. Riding isn’t a static activity, it’s full of nuance, everything affects the experience; the weather, your mood, the horse’s mood, you level of expertise, etc.
Horses gallop a lot faster than we walk or run, therefore we can cover vast areas in a short amount of time. Horseback riding allows us to enjoy nature’s stunning scenery and her fantastical landscapes while also giving us a workout. Maintaining balance and core strength is key while horseback riding, this allows you to stay in control and focus on the path ahead while also maintaining your core and bottom half engaged.
Horseback riding opens your eyes to the world. The experience of riding horses and getting to know them makes you appreciate nature’s perfect evolutionary methods. Animals change according to the environmental needs which are what cause different to emerge. Said characteristics appear in order to help the animal thrive and adapt appropriately to its biosphere. Horses are no different, northern countries have horses with special features like the unique Icelandic horse breed. The Icelandic horse is shorter (almost pony-sized), with a thicker coat than most horses. Also, this horse has a unique trait, it is five-gaited while most horses are only three-gaited. The Icelandic horse displays two more gaits called the tölt and flying pace, these add stability, making your ride smoother. Other unique breeds include the small but fascinating Mongolian horse.
Get to know nature in a different way as you gain a greater appreciation for the dynamic and symbiotic relationship formed by engaging with such amazing creatures.
HORSE RIDING Gallery
DID YOU KNOW...
- Lee Pearson, a British dressage rider, has won a total of 10 gold medals at the Paralympic Games, despite having a horse allergy!
- ‘Jockey’ is the word used to describe some who races horses, usually as their profession. This word also applies to camel riders in camel racing.
- Research has shown that horses' favourite flavours are Fenugreek, banana, and cherry, in that order.
- The horse was domesticated around 2500 B.C.
- The average horse weighs around 1200 lbs (544kg).
- Most horses have four gaits; walk, trot, canter, and gallop. There are special breeds of horses that have additional gaits such as the Icelandic horse.
- All horses, regardless of when they were actually born, are considered to have a common birthday of January 1; this is one of the reasons horsemen and equine breeds don’t want the foals to be born late in the year.
- Horses have the largest eyes of any land mammal.
- Horse’s eyes are located on the side of their head which gives them the remarkable capacity of seeing nearly 360 degrees at one time.
HORSE RIDING & THE NATURAL WORLD
Although you are only a few meters off the ground, horse riding offers you a different view of the world. This perspective allows you to spot things that you normally wouldn’t, like the small flowers blooming on a tree limb or the texture of the hair on the back of the horse’s head. Horseback riding immerses you in the natural environment and allows you to gawk at birds in the sky, ride like the wind as you speed past spectacular sights, and settle in nature as you become one with the horse.
The feeling of ducking below a branch as you hear the horse’s hooves gallop against the hard dirt or splash among puddles is really hard to beat. Horses provide a sense of escapism as you leave modern day troubles aside and focus on getting active while being outdoors.
Horse riding gives you access to a variety of environments and different terrains. You can go on a horseback safari, ride in the Savannah, gallop among white sand beaches at sunset, or pretend to be a gaucho as you ride through the Andes mountains in Patagonia. You can even ride Icelandic horses in the snow!
SOME TIPS FROM OUR EXPERTS WHILE HORSE RIDING
- Connecting with your horse is probably the biggest tip we can give you. Make sure you allow him or her to see you as you approach. Some horses get apprehensive when approached in a straight line, try to walk towards them in an arc in order to not be too direct while also making your presence known.
- Imagine your riding posture is on a graph, to gauge if you are positioned correctly see if you can draw an imaginary straight vertical line through your ear, shoulder, hip and heel. Your shoulders and back should be straight, and the widest part of your feet should be positioned in the stirrup.
- If your horse is going too fast and you feel like you are losing control use the 1-rein stop method. This emergency stop is done by holding the reins tightly in both hands, and pulling on 1 side until the horse’s head turns. This forces him or her to stop and go in a circular motion.
EQUIPMENT USED WHILE HORSE RIDING
The necessary equipment used for horseback riding includes; a helmet, saddle, stirrups, and bridle. Although particular clothing is not essential for horse riding we recommend you partake in the activity with the appropriate clothing which includes riding pants and boots, as well as a breathable top, and riding gloves.
WHY BOOK WITH
Feel different by doing something unique and awe-inspiringBecause your curiosity to discover new things is endless, we are making you rediscover the world, experiencing things you will never forget. We are a reference in experiential tourism, thanks to an exceptional team of experts who hand-pick some of the most extraordinary nature-based experiences in the planet.
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