Applied Posture Riding - horse riding injury

  • Common Injuries Suffered By Horse Riders

    bruise by horse websizeBelieve it or not! Horseback riding carries a higher injury rate than motorcycle riding. On average, motorcyclists suffer an injury once every 7000 hours of riding. By contrast, an equestrian (horseback rider) may have a serious accident once every 350 hours.

    Locations and types of injury

    shoulder injury websizeInjuries commonly occur in the upper extremities,  the wrist, elbow, and shoulder are easy targets for being pinned or caught or flung around causing an injury. The lower extremity injuries, involving the knee, ankle, and foot, are more frequent in rodeos and less common in other equestrian activities.

    Although most accidents occur while riding a horse, some take place in the stable while handling, grooming, or feeding the horse. The stable is a dangerous area for repetitive type injuries. The lower back is susceptible to strains and trauma from lifting. The horse is in close proximity and always at risk of kicking or biting or fleeing another horse.

    People can be kicked, crushed, pushed over at any time. Serious injuries, such as an injury to the spinal region, can leave permanent impairment, possibly resulting in paralysis. 

    15932304 back acheA herniated disc is the most common injury. Others may cause long-term side effects, such as seizures from a head injury. Even a simple mild injury can result in permanent loss of range and or strength on various body parts. The most frequent types of injuries are bruises, strains, and sprains, which affect the soft tissues (skin, ligaments, tendons, and muscles).

    Other types of injuries include fractures (broken bones), dislocations, and concussions. The seriousness of the injury will determine the time away from the horse and from work. Many injuries can be healed with rest, however, many require surgery and a lengthy rehab period. Deaths resulting from horseback riding injuries are not very common. Most deaths are a result of a traumatic injury to the head.


    Approved safety standard hardshell helmets should be worn at all times when you are mounted on the horse. The helmet must always be securely fastened and should be replaced after any significant impact. Many riding and pony clubs have very strict rules regarding the use of helmets. However, many trail riding and pleasure riding clubs choose not to wear a helmet leaving them vulnerable to severe injury.

    Numerous injuries are related to being caught in the stirrup and dragged by the horse. A properly matched boot-stirrup combination is very important. The size of the boot must be 2cm smaller than the stirrup width. Release catches are available on some saddles to prevent dragging if your foot is caught in the stirrup.

    stock photo 7007831 riding boot Correct positioning of the foot in the stirrup is also important. This is taught at all registered riding and pony clubs. Riders should wear properly fitted boots and nonskid gloves. Do not wear loose-fitting or baggy clothing. All riding equipment should be maintained and inspected thoroughly before venturing out.

    Body-protecting gear can be used to prevent soft tissue injuries and rib fractures; however, it does not protect the spine from injury and does not protect against a massive crushing blow to the chest. Some horses are safer than others, but no horse is 100% safe. 

    The medical community has a responsibility to educate the horse riding public and to participate in investigations requested by the horse organizations. If you want to improve your Rider skill, balance confidence and ride better and safer then have a look at my program

    For Information on The Applied Posture Riding Membership Programuse this link

    Be safe everyone.
  • Physiotherapy Rider Clinic

    250px Transversus abdominisThis clinic is a One Day Unmounted Rider Biomechanics and Physiotherapy Clinic. 

    All riders attend an unmounted training education day. (no horses).

    The whole group stays for the whole day. 

    I recommend following up with a mounted clinic at a future date to apply and progress the training and techniques.

    The whole day is about Rider Biomechanics and Physiotherapy advice and what is involved in training the posture for riding.


    • You will learn about the Anatomy Of The Riding Posture.
    • You will learn about The Riding Muscles and Their Function in Riding.
    • I will discuss The Transverse Abdominal (TVA) muscle in detail and its relevance to riding.
    • I will teach you "The Core Crunch". This is the starting point for all of your training.

    Movement pattern 1 compressed

    This is the starting point for all of your training.

    The Core Crunch is the first Movement Pattern you will learn, there are 18 more specific to riding.

    Muscle Testing is important and once you have the Core Crunch you will then test all of the major riding muscles.

    • You will also perform a simple test for your balance.
    • You will learn the difference between an exercise and a Movement Pattern and how to apply them to your riding.
    • I will talk about injury, work, habits, and resting postures and riding.
    • I include a session on the injury, age-related changes, pain management, and the use of braces.
    • I will talk about My Jargon. My program has been designed by me, therefore learning my language is relevant.
    • What is a Core Crunch and Coordinated Breathing?
    • What is a Movement Pattern?
    • What Is Independent Isolation?
    • What is a Resting Posture and What Does Self Carriage Mean?

    My Unique Jargon When Teaching Riders will be addressed.

    • What is the difference between a Training Aid and an Invisible Aid and the Sloth Aid?

    Once you have the above information we can move onto learning the Specific Movement Patterns I have designed for the horse rider.

    APR movement patterns

    The Movement Patterns will teach you how to apply Rider Biomechanics to your riding.

    • I will demonstrate exercises for different body parts to train strength.
    • I will also give Advanced Strengthening Exercises for the future.
    • We can explore the OOV and The Body Blade for daily routines.
    • Managing injury and individual problems will be included during the session.
    • At the end of the day, you will have a completely new and specific way of training yourself for riding.

    I absolutely guarantee this is a clinic like no other you have attended or looked at.

    Included in the cost of the clinic is the "Applied Posture Riding The Fundamentals of Riding" manual.(value $100)

    This workshop is about finding out about your problems and you as the rider, not your horse.

    At the end of this clinic, you will know everything about you and what you need to do to ride with skill and fun.

    Ongoing support via email or by phone is also offered.

    As a Physiotherapist, I am qualified in all Rider Biomechanics, Injury, and Rehab.

    • I am able to offer riders professional information and detailed individual assessments not offered by a riding instructor or personal trainer.
    • I am able to give medical advice where needed and offer ongoing support.
    • I am able to prescribe, fit, and supply the correct horse rider brace and exercises where needed.
    • I am able to assess what you think of your riding, what your instructor says, and what I find and fix it.
    • I am able to prescribe specific horse rider exercises for you.
    • What Is Required?

    For this clinic, the following is required

    • Your own physio gym ball, the correct size is mid-thigh height.
    • A length of theraband,
    • Wear sports clothes, not skirts or jeans.
    • Sandshoes or bare feet will be fine.

    The One day workshop is $250 per rider

    Maximum of 15 unmounted riders

    The One Day Mounted Clinic can be arranged at a date in the future. This format gives you the best assessment, training, and education package  I offer. If you try and pack too much into your training without the basics then you will not get the ultimate results. This is the ideal clinic for a club to offer its members. It is suitable for all riders from beginners to elite. We all use the same muscles and we all have similar problems unrelated to your riding but directly affects you riding,

    If you want to host a  Clinic contact me directly to arrange dates,