Hey, Horse Lovers!
The scientific name for a horse is equus which is where we get the word equestrian for those who ride horses. Sporting contests go all the way back nearly three thousand years ago with a four-horse chariot race during the 25th Olympiad in Greece. The Middle Ages brought horse riding contests that focused mainly on jousting.
It wasn’t until 1868 that equestrianism as we know it picked up popularity throughout Europe and North America with the introduction of a popular horse show in Dublin. By 1912, the Olympic Games had added the equestrian sports of show jumping, dressage, and eventing, to the line-up!
The popularity of horseback riding blew up in the United States since horses played such an influential role in the history of the country like travel among Native Americans and settlers from hundreds of years ago, helping hands on farms, as well as beloved pets. Horses are found all the country over in various stables and homes.
Here are a few of the most accomplished, record holding riders:
Charlotte Dujardin was born on July 13, 1985. She is a British dressage rider world-renowned for winning three Olympic gold medals, as well as setting three World Records with her horse Valegro.
Sir Mark Todd
Sir Mark Todd (knighted in 2013) was born in New Zealand, 1956. He was voted Event Rider of the 20th Century by the International Equestrian Federation. He began winning World Championships in 1978 and has since won several prestigious competitions.
Pippa Funnell was born in England, 1968. She became an eventing star by taking the first-ever title of the Grand Slam of Eventing in 2003, winning Kentucky, Badminton, and Burghley. Pippa has won a number of respected titles since.
Riding programs and summer camps have really made the equestrian sport accessible to Americans. Are you horseback riding this summer camp season? Leave a comment to let us know! Be sure to shop our horse riding accessories and, as always, thanks for reading. Happy trails!