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Rider Insider: One Reason to Ride

What's the one primary reason why you ride horses?

May 1, 2013

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Why Ride Riding horses is therapeutic. Spending time communicating with an animal helps to alleviate the pressures of daily life and has even been shown to provide benefits to riders with mental or emotional disabilities.

Riding horses is good exercise, despite what your non-horsey friends might think. A British Horse Society study showed that an hour of riding burned 360 calories, similar to a moderate bike ride of the same duration.

Riding horses can be a great social outlet. Riders at boarding or lesson stables or who live in equestrian-friendly communities can often find like-minded people to ride and train with. Conversely, people with work and family demands often look forward to barn time as a chance to have quiet time with just their horse.

Riding provides a competitive outlet for those who are driven to win. From the glitz of western pleasure and polished perfection of hunters to adrenaline sports like three-day eventing and extreme cowboy races, competitive riders devote their days to the pursuit of a championship or a personal best.

Any rider can list off a dozen reasons why they love to ride and be around horses. The challenge would be whittling those myriad reasons down to one. For this month's Rider Insider, we want you to do just that. If you had to describe the one primary reason why you ride or work with horses, what would it be? Click "Submit a Comment" below to share your thoughts. Some responses may be selected to be published in a future issue of Horse Illustrated!

Noble Equine Throughout 2013, Noble Equine will be sponsoring the Rider Insider column in Horse Illustrated with a prize for the selected featured response. If you'd like to be considered for a prize, make sure to include your contact info in the email field of the contact form (emails will not be publicly displayed.)

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Reader Comments

Maggie    Morgantown, WV

9/6/2014 4:41:59 AM

They become your family, and you seem to become their herd. Equestrians form unbreakable bonds with our equines, bonds that give us hope and courage, and for them they have gained love and reassurance. They make everyday we see them, a million times better. Our horses are our best friends, that we can trust and we know they won't judge us. They help us with everyday stress, and make us all better people. Having an outstanding best friend is the reason why I ride.

Magda    Ithaca, NY

5/14/2014 6:56:32 PM

Being an equestrian isn't just about riding. It's about having a pure love for equines. I love to be at the barn because it is the one place that I can truly be myself. I can talk about nonsense to our donkey while picking out his burrs, obsessively take photographs, dance spontaneously, sing along with the radio… I see myself reflected in my four-legged friends. They have taught me something about myself I never could have found out on my own, and I have them to thank for the purest moments of my life.

Annabel    Bedminster, NJ

4/5/2014 7:18:38 AM

If I could only choose one reason to ride, it would be obvious. Passion. Riding isn't a "hobby" to me, it's more like a lifestyle. Living in a different lifestyle, for example, would become challenging with the new ways. I often wonder what non-horsey people do after work, or school. I imagine it being very boring and bland. So, Passion is my one reason to ride.

Sam    Nashville, TN

1/12/2014 1:02:46 AM

The best part of riding that no one understands until they are a rider (not a pony-ride, or rent-a horse for the day type but year in to year out type) is the amazing bond you can create with a 1,000+ pound animal that could easily hurt you but doesn't. The silent communication with a partner that speaks no words. Sharing goals and dreams with this trusting amazing loving creature that will always be there for you.

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