السبت 22 يونيو 2024

How Long Should I Train My Horse Daily?

موقع أيام نيوز

Fitness contributes to far more than aesthetics and performance making it a constant goalpost for domesticated horses. In terms of health and wellbeing it serves a protective role safeguarding from illness and injury. But how long does a horse need to exercise daily to reap these benefits?
While there is no magic rule for daily exercise duration there are unequivocal needs depending upon the season. During periods of lesser activity due to poor weather or unforgiving schedules activity needs to be sufficient to maintain bodily systems that rely on it. During the active season of training and showing activity needs to be sufficient to improve fitness. These figures differ widely.
For our purposes we will delineate between these as a Maintenance Phase periods of lesser activity versus a Building Phase the height of your riding season. Below I have offered generic guidelines for the amount of time to train your horse daily based on goals and time of season.

During inclement weather vacations or in the cases of senior horses students often ask how long they need to exercise their horse to prevent poor health. In other words what is the minimal amount of activity the horses bodily systems need? That amount varies slightly due to age but all horses rely on a baseline fitness for the following health outcomes
Gastrointestinal motility
Clearance of secretions from lungs
Resistance to disease muscle contractions serve as a pump for the lymphatic system
Hoof strength and growth
Thermoregulation
Functionality of muscles tendons and ligaments
Relief from physical stiffness and mental stress associated with confinement in domesticated horses
Circulation of blood oxygen muscle enzymes and nutrients that prevent inflammation
To date research indicates that 25 to 30 minutes is the daily minimal requirement for maintaining health in these areas. This 25 to 30minute requirement is defined as continuous movement at 40 percent of the horses maximum heart rate. For most horses this is around 90 beats per minute or approximately the equivalent of a very brisk walk or easy jog. At least this amount of activity four or more days per week helps maintain adaptations in the systems noted above and also keeps the body prepared for more vigorous conditioning programs if and when that time comes.
To be clear 25 minutes per day does not yield a fit horse capable of hard work efforts long trail rides and so on. However it does keep the musculoskeletal and aerobic systems in a healthy place and allows the