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Regional, Monthly All-Breed Horse Magazine • Since 1993
Idaho • Montana • Nevada • Oregon • Utah • Washington • Wyoming

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Regional, Monthly All-Breed Horse Magazine
Distributed throughout the Greater Rockies Since 1993

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Copyright 2010 Rocky Mountain Rider. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Reproduction of any editorial material, artwork and photos is strictly forbidden without express written permission of the publisher. For information about reprint rights, please contact the editor; editor@rockymountainrider.com.

 

Help Promote the Horse Industry!

American Horse Council Seeks Information on Health Benefits of Riding

 

September 2010 Issue

 

     In the spring of 2010, the President established a Taskforce on Childhood Obesity to address the mounting problem of overweight children.

     The American Horse Council (AHC) is looking for any documents, studies, articles, etc. that highlight the physical benefits of equestrian sports and recreational riding.

     The AHC’s goal is to document that horseback riding is good exercise for children, and to make the case to the Task Force that riding is beneficial.

 

     The AHC has already proposed to the Task Force that horseback riding be included in the scope of physical activities that the Task Force focuses on to increase physical activity among the young.

 

     Horseback riding “is a complex and demanding physical sport. Riders must develop muscular strength, endurance, flexibility, coordination, balance, and fine motor skills. Riding can also improve posture and cardiovascular health.

     “Though there is often the perception that the horse is doing all the work, riding certainly requires athletic skills and activity from the rider that develops muscle and burns calories.

     “Additionally, the daily care of a horse — mucking out stalls, stacking hay, grooming, etc. — promotes physical fitness also. Riding for pleasure on a regular basis has many of the same benefits as competitive riding.”

 

     Today, many equestrian organizations are specifically geared toward youth like the United States Pony Club, 4-H, and the National High School Rodeo Association. Additionally, most national equestrian organizations have youth programs, like the United States Equestrian Federation’s “High School Equestrian Athlete” program or the American Quarter Horse Youth Association.

 

     A 2006 Pennsylvania State study (Impact of Equine Activities on Youth Development) found that once children became involved in a youth horse program, 90.8% stayed involved for more than four years and 58% stayed involved for more than eight years.

     The AHC needs as much documentation and information as possible to continue making its case for the health benefits of riding. Please email bpendergrass@horsecouncil.org regarding this issue.

     To contact the American Horse Council: 202-296-4031; www.horsecouncil.org.

Copyright 2010 Rocky Mountain Rider. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Reproduction of any editorial material, artwork and photos is strictly forbidden without express written permission of the publisher. For information about reprint rights, please contact the editor; editor@rockymountainrider.com.

 

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