Everyone takes a tumble from time to time and although it’s tempting to push all thoughts of falling off to the back of your mind, it’s vital to be prepared for an encounter with terra firma.
Here are a few tips to keep yourself safer out on a hack.
Always wear a riding hat that’s Kitemarked to a current safety standard.
Wear a back protector recognised by the BETA Body Protector Standard – these are no longer only worn by competitive riders.
Equip yourself and your horse with hi-vis gear.
Consider taking out insurance for you and your horse.
Just in case…
Always take your mobile phone with you when you ride. It needs to be fully charged, with the emergency contacts easily accessible.
Tell someone where you’re going and what time you expect to be back.
Attach an ID tag to your horse’s saddle.
Carry a lead rope.
Take a first aid kit.
Teach your horse to stop and wait if you fall off or dismount.
Go out with another rider or someone on foot.
Consider downloading an app that can log your location, or which will call or text a chosen emergency contact if it believes you have been in an accident.
Try to get straight back in the saddle after a fall. Alternatively, lead your horse back to the yard and hop aboard again at the mounting block. This will help to dispel any fears or misgivings that may have been growing in your mind and which will only get worse if you delay remounting.
For more advice on what to do if you fall off on a hack, read the full article in issue 456.
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