Horseback riding is an age-old activity that began as a necessary form of transportation and has since transformed into a more leisurely pastime. Above the recreational aspect, we derive a series of physical and mental health benefits from riding a horse. Many studies have shown it can improve your overall physical and mental well-being.
Here are some of the many benefits you may experience from horseback riding!
Improves Core Strength
Although riding is a pleasure and leisure activity, it also is a form of isometric fitness that can strengthen the core. The simple act of sitting on the animal forces the rider to balance. Riders must also use specific muscle groups for cueing the horse and engaging in the activity. This makes riding great for therapeutic purposes for those who are disabled or recovering from some form of injury.
The muscles that form the core are the hip, lower back, and abdominals. When you have a developed core, you will enjoy various benefits like a low incidence of injury, reduced back pain, excellent overall posture, etc. Horseback riding is a perfect way to develop this.
Besides the usual tasks related to caring for a horse like grooming, lifting saddles, and moving hay, riding is also a great way to burn calories! Riding a horse is an excellent way to get a workout. Even though it is not the same type of exercise as rowing, running, or swimming, the body still experiences fat loss. Riding gently, even for about 30 minutes, can burn up to 360 calories. It is a moderate form of exercise, and you decide how hard you ride, which determines the fat loss you experience.
The rider should be mentally prepared to react to the unexpected turns that horses can make. Even the most well-trained horses can catch you off guard with a surprising move, forcing you to react with reason rather than panic. You’ll have to make quick decisions to get the horse under your control and move forwards. As a result, there will be insufficient time to think and make decisions using the brain. In this circumstance, your instincts and nerve reflexes will naturally react. You will be able to build superior reflexes if you ride horses regularly.
Riding can be a social activity. The days you spend at the barn involve a lot of time caring for your horse, which is more enjoyable with other people. Riding horses allows you to meet barn staff and other riders. The relationships you develop with fellow equestrians are invaluable and extend well beyond the horse community. Also, the show, riding lessons, trail horses, local clubs, etc., go a long way to developing your social skills and relationships.
Riding a horse for the first time can be a scary experience. However, learning from your mistakes and mastering the art of horseback riding will boost your self-confidence. You must leave your comfort zone and take risks to achieve this. You will become a talented equestrian with adequate training, which will boost your overall self-confidence.
Teaching ourselves and a horse new skills is not done overnight and often requires a lot of repetition and practice. Sometimes the progress we make is so small that we don’t even realize when things are moving in the right direction unless we consistently track it and take the time to look back to where we started.
If you want to get anywhere as a rider, patience is a skill you will inevitably need and something that is likely to serve you in other aspects of life.
If you are in the process of getting your own horse to experience the many benefits of horseback riding, you will need a high-quality barn to keep them safe and happy. At Deer Creek Structures, we craft custom run-in sheds and barns that are perfect for any horse and other barn animals. Our structures can be customized by choosing available add-on options, or we can build to desired specifications.
Contact us today at (254)546-2276 to discuss the right structure for you and your horse!