Keeping your Horse’s Competition Fit this Autumn
November 10th, 2017
If you are a hard-working competition rider the autumn months bringing about reduced light, colder weather and mud can be somewhat of a challenge. In our latest blog therefore we take a look at maximising your opportunities to ride this autumn in order to keep your horses fit!
There are lots of things to get involved in during the autumn months for competitive riders; though eventing has drawn to a close the Dressage and Show Jumping world is still in full swing, with many winter competitions and championships to aim for! For some equestrians the goal is simply to maximise their opportunities to get out hacking, and this time of year offers some of the most beautiful times to be in the countryside and of course, don’t forget there is arena polo!
During autumn time management is key. Autumn means reduced hours of light so this can mean it is more difficult to ride. Keep a close eye on the clock when completing jobs if you also plan to ride or why not ride first and muck out and prepare feeds etc once you’ve made the most of the light and ridden!
Keep your horse fit by drawing up a weekly schedule of when you can ride and if there are any days you can go into work early or late in order to ride at either end of the day. You could plan your hacking for the weekend if you are lucky enough to have a floodlit sand school to use on week nights!
If you’re riding regularly and your competing horse is working hard then it is essential that they are clipped. For some equines clipping is not necessary as the winter coat protects them from the elements but for working horses and ponies thick, hairy coats can mean they loose significant sweat and overheat when ridden. This will limit their ability to perform and if not resolved via Electrolytes it can disrupt their bodies’ mineral balance.
To fully embrace the season remember to check your local events calendar online or through the local riding club. It may be worth looking at any advertising of new or seasoned events in local tack stores too! At this time of year sponsored rides and hunter trials are aplenty as well as unaffiliated and affiliated Dressage and Show Jumping. Check your local events calendar to see what is going on near you and get entering to enjoy autumn to the full!
Happy Riding everyone!