Safety Tips Every Horse Rider Should Know

Riding a horse might be the closest thing to flying without wings. But let's not forget that even the mythical Pegasus had to watch where he was stepping! If you're a seasoned equestrian or just getting started, prioritizing safety is a no-brainer. So, buckle up (or should we say, strap on that helmet!) and get ready for some horse-sense safety tips that'll keep you galloping happily ever after. And remember, they're not just horsing around!

1. Suit Up with the Right Gear

First thing’s first, you wouldn’t go to a royal ball without your ballgown (or snazzy suit), so why would you hop on a horse without the proper attire? Fashion and function unite in the equestrian world, and the right gear can save you from a world of hurt. So, let's break it down:


A helmet: Think of it as your crown that also happens to protect your noggin. Whether you're taking a leisurely stroll or attempting a daring jump, this little piece of headgear is a must. The JOHN WHITAKER NRG RIDING HELMET, for example, is a blend of fashion, functionality, and the promise of keeping your brains unscrambled.

Proper boots: Heels aren’t just for the red carpet! They prevent your feet from playing an impromptu game of slip-n-slide with the stirrups. You don't want your foot to get stuck, leading to an unplanned game of drag-and-gallop. Remember the fundamentals.


Alternate Hat Option: For the younger riders, or those young at heart, the UVEX ONYXX PRINCESS HAT is a dream come true. It's as if safety met fairytales and they had this stunning hat baby!

Sturdy pants and shirt: Do you know what's not fun? Chafing. Do you know what is? Looking stylish and feeling comfortable while you ride. Go for snug-fitting pants and a shirt that says, "I'm here to ride and look good doing it." And don't forget to tuck that shirt in - fashion faux pas are one thing, but shirts getting caught in gear are on a whole new level of oops!

2. How to Approach Horses (Hint: Not Like a Ninja)

As much as you might want to surprise Mr. Ed with your best ninja impression, horses aren't fans of sudden appearances or moves. They're majestic creatures, but they can get spooked quite easily. So when you're around them, it's crucial to keep a few things in mind:

Approach from the side: And definitely not from behind. Why, you ask? Well, imagine someone sneaking up on you during a Netflix binge. Not fun, right? Horses feel the same way. Plus, they have powerful hind legs that they might use if startled. The side approach is the equestrian equivalent of a friendly "Hello!"

Speak softly: No need for shouty capitals here. A gentle, calm voice will let the horse know you're a friend, not a foe. Plus, it's a great time to practice those dulcet tones you've been working on. Learn the art of the equine chat.

3. Know Thy Steed: Bonding Time!

Just as you wouldn’t hop into a car without knowing a thing or two about driving, don’t just jump on a horse without understanding their behavior. Horses, like humans, have personalities, quirks, and moods. Understanding these can make your ride smoother and safer.

For equestrian enthusiasts keen on understanding their horse better, the HORSE PLAYBOOK is an excellent resource. This guide offers insights into horse behavior, allowing riders to anticipate reactions and ensure a harmonious ride. Remember, when you and your horse are in sync, you're not just riding; you're dancing!

4. Mastering the Basics of Riding

Every sport has its basics. In basketball, you dribble; in swimming, you paddle. In horse riding? You...ride. But there's more to it than just sitting pretty on your steed. Mastering fundamental techniques can save you from potential mishaps.

Mounting & Dismounting: It sounds simple, but there's a technique to it. Always mount or dismount from the left side of the horse. This tradition dates back to the days when knights wore swords on their left, making it cumbersome to mount from the right. Practical Horseman offers in-depth tutorials on this. Plus, sticking to the left ensures consistency for the horse.

For a deep dive into riding techniques, the RIDING TECHNIQUES MANUAL is your go-to guide. This comprehensive manual covers everything from basic posture to advanced maneuvers.

5. Respect the Environment

Riding isn't just an indoor arena affair. The great outdoors beckons with its trails, fields, and forests. But remember, with great riding areas come great responsibilities. Preserving the environment ensures that riders can enjoy nature's beauty for generations to come.

Stick to the Trails: Going off-trail might sound like an exciting adventure, but it could harm local flora and fauna. Plus, familiar trails ensure that you don’t stumble into unknown terrain that might be unsafe. The TrailMeister is a fantastic resource for identifying safe and eco-friendly trails worldwide.

Leave No Trace: The age-old adage of campers and hikers applies to riders too. Carry out everything you bring in, be it food wrappers, bottles, or even apple cores from your horse’s snack. Keeping nature pristine is a shared responsibility. Learn more about the Leave No Trace principles.

6. Advanced Safety Tips: Prep Like a Pro!

They say “Prevention is better than cure.” But let's be real: if you’re like me, you’ve wondered, “Why not both?” For those advanced riders out there or anyone with an inkling to take it up a notch, these pro tips will keep you prepared and safe.


Body Protectors: Taking falls in style and safety? Sign me up! Advanced riding, especially in competitive scenes, requires gear that provides additional safety. The CHAMPION TITANIUM TI22 BODY PROTECTOR is a literal lifesaver. It’s not just about how it looks (although, it does look pretty sleek) but also about the military-grade protection it offers.

7. Handling Emergencies: Stay Calm and Trot On

Riding can be unpredictable, no matter how experienced you are. Knowing how to handle unexpected situations is crucial. Whether it’s a surprise thunderstorm or your horse deciding to chase after a butterfly, being prepared is the key.


Riding in Adverse Weather: Rain, shine, or apocalyptic meteor shower (okay, maybe not that last one), a rider needs to be ready. The HYVIZ WATERPROOF RIDING JACKET ensures that come rain or shine, you remain visible, dry, and stylish. The high visibility colors ensure other riders (and those pesky UFOs) can spot you easily.

8. Aftercare: Pamper Your Steed and Gear

You wouldn’t drive your car for weeks without a check-up, right? Your horse and gear also deserve regular TLC. Ensuring they’re clean, fit, and functional not only prolongs their life but ensures safety during rides.

Keep Gear Clean: Regularly check and clean your equipment. It helps in identifying wear and tear that could lead to potential issues. This applies to everything from your saddle to your riding boots and even the stirrups. Aha! Speaking of stirrups, if you're shopping for quality, consider the SHIRES FILLIS PEACOCK STIRRUPS. These are not just about footrests; they’re about safe and stylish footrests. Imagine your little one’s glee riding with these!


In Conclusion

Riding is an exhilarating experience. With the right approach, gear, and a touch of humor, it can be both fun and safe. Whether you're a newbie rider or an experienced jockey, the journey is filled with learning. Just remember to take things one trot at a time!

Until our next gallop into the world of equestrian delights, happy riding!

Asked by You: Unbridling Common Queries!

Alright, dear reader, you've had some burning questions, and we've heard you! Let's trot through some of the most frequently asked questions. Ready, set, gallop!

1. What is the 20 rule for horse riding?

Excellent query! The 20 rule, or more commonly known as the "20% rule," suggests that a horse shouldn't carry more than 20% of its own body weight, rider and equipment included. For instance, a 500kg horse? That's a maximum of 100kg inclusive of rider, saddle, and all those delightful accessories. Why is this crucial? To ensure the horse's comfort and health. Overburdening is a real no-no!

2. What is the basic safety around horses?

Oh, where do we begin? A horse is a majestic creature but, like us, they have their moods, fears, and quirks. First things first: always approach a horse from the side and speak softly to announce your presence. Avoid sudden movements or loud noises which might startle them. Remember to wear appropriate gear, like safe headgear and sturdy footwear. And lastly, but most importantly, always treat them with respect and love. They're not just animals; they're partners in this equestrian dance!

3. What should horse riders try to avoid?

Many things, but let’s saddle up with the big ones. Avoid slouching while riding—it's bad for posture and control. Steer clear of overworking your horse in extreme weather conditions. And remember, horses aren't motorbikes, so avoid sudden stops or turns. It's about harmony and understanding. Oh, and avoid going full gallop on a full stomach; trust me, it’s not the kind of roller-coaster you want to experience.

4. What should you not do while riding a horse?

For the love of all things equestrian, don't scream or shout, even if you spot a sale on your favorite riding gear. Avoid making sudden movements, yanking the reins, or being aggressive. Never ride without appropriate safety equipment. And please, resist the urge to take selfies during a trot; it's not as Insta-worthy as it sounds!

Hopefully, these answers help. Remember, the key to a great equestrian journey is patience, understanding, and the right pair of jodhpurs!