Staying safe with your horse
As the clocks go forward, the days get longer and nights get lighter, more riders return to the saddle as the competition season starts. As we start to see more riders out with their horses, it is important that we remember to keep ourselves and our horses safe.
Here are a few top safety tips for a rider to help you keep safe whilst riding your horses this season.
- Don’t rush - take your time tacking up, handling or schooling your horse. Rushing your horse and yourself can lead to tension and mistakes so choose the simple option if time is tight.
- Always wear a safety helmet when handling, leading or riding. If you drop it or have a fall, replace rather than regret, as damage is not always visible - it could save your life.
- Have your helmet fitted by a qualified hat fitter and ensure that it is up to the correct standard for your event or discipline.
- Have regular lessons and improve your own fitness, so you not only feel more confident but have better core strength and reaction time.
- Body protectors need to fit correctly to work effectively, so get expert advice.
- Don’t push your own body or your horses beyond their capabilities. Being unfit and tired can affect you both physically and mentally.
Out on the Road
Riders Keep Yourself Safe
- When out on the roads with your horse always make sure that you wear your hi-visibility clothing to make sure you can always be seen.
- Always try to ride in single file where possible, as this makes it easier for traffic to pass you.
- Remember to signal to drivers which direction you are travelling. If you need them to stop or slow down signal this to them.
- Always thank drivers for slowing down.
· Always remember to pass wide and slow, some horses may get spooked by fast, loud or large vehicles. If you pass wide and slow you may not come across quite as scary for the horse.
· If you see riders walking their horses in double file or the horse has a person walking beside them, this may mean that one of the horses is nervous or a youngster and the other horse is more confident and is there to reassure the other horse.