Horse riding goes back thousands of years. At one time, horses were a necessity for transportation, manufacturing, farming, and more. Nowadays, technological advancements mean that they are no longer an essential part of life. However, many people continue to ride horses for fun, for fitness, and sometimes even for financial gain.
Whether you are a casual rider or a serious competitor, horse riding has many benefits. These benefits include greater core strength, improved muscle strength and flexibility, and better balance and coordination. There’s also a mental health benefit, as riding can reduce stress and boost your confidence.
But horse riding can also be dangerous. From bumps and bruises to broken bones and even serious head or back injuries, riders assume a degree of risk every time they get into the saddle. Fortunately, you can help to prevent injury (or recover more quickly if you do sustain an injury) using wearable technology and recovery wear. Read on to learn how!
Prevent Injury Before it Occurs
“Prevention is better than cure,” as the saying goes. This means it is better to avoid getting injured in the first place than to heal from an injury.
Many people first reach for wearable technology when they have already sustained an injury. But you can also prevent injury with recovery wear if you use it consistently. Incrediwear’s wearable technology is designed to be lightweight and breathable, and does not restrict movement. This means that it is perfect for wearing during a ride as well as after.
Protect Your Back
Your back is one of the most vulnerable parts of your body during horse riding. This means you should take all the steps you can to avoid damaging it, as a back injury can be very serious and have lifelong repercussions.
It is advisable to always wear a body protector when you are horse riding. These garments, which may be worn under or over your riding jacket, are designed to cushion the blow and prevent serious injury if you fall off or get kicked by a horse.
You can take back protection a step further by adding a back brace underneath your body protector. A back brace helps to ensure good posture, relieves pain and discomfort, and speeds up recovery from any injuries. It won’t restrict your mobility, and you can even wear it after riding to aid in post-activity recovery.
Protect Your Joints
Because of the way you have to sit and hold your hands when you’re riding a horse, it can be taxing on your joints, particularly your wrists and ankles. Using ankle sleeves and wrist sleeves can help to protect these sensitive and delicate areas from injury, and can help them to recover more quickly if you do get hurt.
Sleeves help to restore and support greater joint mobility, increase blood flow, and reduce any pain and swelling. They are made of soft and comfortable, form-fitting fabric. You will soon forget you’re even wearing them, so you can get on with enjoying your ride pain-free.
Fingerless circulation gloves are another great option for riders. These protect your wrists and hands (which are also under considerable strain when you’re riding, particularly if your horse tends to pull at the reins) without compromising on dexterity.
Consider a Body Sleeve
Horse riding is a tough workout for your core. A strong core helps to protect your body from the impact of riding, helps you maintain a better body position on your horse, and makes it less likely that you will fall off.
As well as performing regular core strengthening exercises (such as planks and leg raises), you can help to protect your core with a body sleeve. This versatile recovery garment can be pulled up or down into your desired position and is made of a lightweight and breathable fabric. Put it on under your riding gear before you go out, and you will benefit from extra protection for those all-important back and core muscles.
Use Your Wearable Technology Consistently
Injury prevention garments and recovery wear are only as good as your usage of them. This means you should be using them consistently if you want to get the most benefit from them. After all, they will not do you any good if you buy them and then leave them in your drawer.
Take five minutes before your ride to put on your wrist and ankle protection, back brace, and any other protective and preventive garments you need. A few extra minutes is well worth the benefits of avoiding or mitigating injuries.
Carry Bandage Wrap with You
Even with all injury precautions taken, things can still go wrong when you’re out riding. It’s always a good idea to take a small first aid kit with you when you’re out riding, particularly if you are going to be away from easily reachable assistance.
Why not add a roll of bandage wrap to your kit? This allows you to handle any minor injuries that might occur and prevent them from getting worse until you can return to the yard and treat them properly.
Listen to Your Body
Your body is tremendously wise and can provide you with an endless array of information if you only listen to it. If you find yourself feeling pain or discomfort during or after a ride, do not be tempted to ignore it. Ignoring a minor injury can mean that it escalates to a major injury which might have been preventable.
If you are feeling any aches and pains during or after riding, the right wearable technology may be able to prevent it from getting worse. You can also help yourself to recover by using recovery wear promptly after every single ride.
Most importantly, take a break if you need to. You wouldn’t run on a serious ankle injury, for example, so don’t try to ride on one, either! It is simply not worth putting yourself at more risk for the sake of going for a ride when your body needs rest.
If you take care of yourself, horse riding can bring you many years of joy. Stay safe, and happy riding!