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riding accidents

This is a discussion on riding accidents within the Horse Riding forums, part of the Riding Horses category
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    03-26-2011, 02:14 AM
  #11
Trained
My injury was last summer and is more my fault than the horse's. Turns out riding can be terrible for your back.

I work at a summer camp and we're there from Sunday morning-Friday night. I get there on Sunday one week with a headache. Didn't think anything of it, but as the week goes by, it doesn't go away and gets progressively worse. By Wednesday, I was gagging and near puking from pain. Thursday I skipped breakfast and texted the other wranglers saying I needed the morning off. I tried to get a doctor appointment in the town nearby. Nearest time was 2. It was 11 and I couldn't wait that long.

I got a ride to the ER and was given morphine and a CT scan because they thought I just had a migraine. Morphine didn't help at all, they gave me some vicodin and I was sent back. I got back to camp and puked and called my mom to come pick me up (I definitely couldn't drive.) Vicodin also didn't help at all and made my stomach upset even more, so more puking.

I went to the ER at home (I live 50 miles from camp). They thought cluster headaches after I said I didn't think it was a migraine. Tried treating cluster headaches, nothing. I also said morphine didn't work, so they gave me a shot of dilaudid (8x stronger than a shot of morphine) so I could sleep. I slept for a while and was sent home with a different painkiller pill (which also did not do much).

I spent the next couple days living in my bedroom with a couple really fluffy pillows and as much darkness as possible. I hadn't eaten much in a week and would still puke if I got up from the pain. I thought I was feeling better, so my mom and I were going to drive to camp because I wanted to go to the last closing ceremony of the summer (I missed the last week of camp) and get my car. We got there and my head was pounding. I am pretty sure I finally broke down and cried because I was so sick of it hurting.

We turn around and go back and go straight to the ER. They a shot of imitrex to see if it was a migraine again. I immediately felt awful and threw up, then laid down with the blankets over my head. Then, while the doctor, nurses, and my mom were out of the room, I felt the medicine go up my neck and basically shoot me in the back of the head. I started screaming and bawling, which I had no control of. They came back in right away and put a dose of dilaudid in my IV. Thank God. That was the most pain I have never been in in my life.

The nurse then suggested a chiropractor. I went the next day and was asked if I was in a severe car accident because one of the vertebrae in my neck was all twisted. I realized the week before I had been loping a lot, but would come to sudden stops and bounced in my saddle.

All in all, I dropped 15lbs (I am 5'7" and weighed about 120. I dropped to 105. I looked sickly) and found out I was allergic to imitrex.

Sorry for the novel.
     
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    03-26-2011, 03:41 AM
  #12
Trained
I've had a few doozies, and know a lot of people who have been hospitalised and some who have been killed in horse accidents.

My own - first biggie was getting dragged. I was riding with my friend in the forrest, we decided to take them for a gallop up the side of a dirt/gravel track. My friend was in front of my, my horse spooked violently, I came off the side and got hooked in the stirrup. Friend didn't realise and kept galloping. Of course my horse being an ottb panicked and followed his friend at a flat out gallop, me being dragged upside down under his legs along gravel. I've still got some pretty horrible looking scars up my back from that incident, as well as dislocating a shoulder and hip.

The next, would have been on another young tb. This one was the first time I took her out. I went to ride her in a quiet corner of a spare arena at a competition day. A horse across the grounds neighed and she went mental. Rodeo bucked across the arena, head between her front legs, ended up getting a front leg through the reins, twisting her bucks at full height, then panicking and running straight at a gate. I'm still on board at this point. Get to the fence at full bore gallop while still bucking (yes, horses CAN buck and gallop at the same time - I'm living proof!!)Hit the fence, went straight up on her back legs with so much force that she threw herself over backwards into the fence. Landed on me, panicked, got up, kicked out of the gate and got me, again, stuck in the stirrup, and took off bucking across the arena until my apparent 'safety stirrup' broke (I always ride breakers and green/youngsters in safety stirrups.. don't bother now, I've been hooked up in them twice and they haven't given out to let me free).
Ended up tearing nearly every ligament in my hip and groin. Tore muscles from the back of my knee, all the way up to my neck on the right side of my body, dislocated my shoulder again and did something funky to my back that they never worked out. Everyone thought that I had broken my back, I literally could not walk, I couldn't move my right leg and had no feeling in the right side of my body. Apparently I damaged nerves hence the numbness - I think I was lucky!
To this day I still get problems with my groin, shoulder and back. If I ride more than a couple of horses in a day, by the end of the day I can't lift my right leg higher than the top of my left foot, and have limited motion in my right shoulder.

Don't ride 3 year old, ottb mares in season at a competition ground on a comp day!!


As for stories of other people. A friends best mate was riding her horse down the road in her western saddle. The horse spooked, reared and fell on her, puncturing her abdomen with the horn of the saddle and killing her. Not nice :/

Another friend of a friend, the daughter is a ParaOlympian who had broken her back as a kid and was wheelchair bound as a result.
Her mum was loading her horse into the float. She was standing on the side of the float beside the divider. From what I understand, the horse panicked at something and flung itself sideways, crushing the lady and killing her.

A lady with who I have an occasional lesson with - she's **** expensive! - was travelling interstate with her team of dressage horses, for a national competition. She was unloading a horse, which kicked out and got her in the stomach. She ruptured her spleen and was very nearly killed.


I have a lot more stories about injuries... surprised that I'm still riding!!
     
    03-26-2011, 05:53 AM
  #13
Foal
I hope you found enough accident examples. Once a girl I saw fell from a horse during riding classes but thankfully she did not get hurt much.
     
    03-26-2011, 08:23 AM
  #14
Foal
In June of 1997 a horse flipped over on top of me breaking my pelvis in two places. He reared on gravel and he lost his footing on the rocks. I was 17 years old, spent 3 days in the hospital and 8 weeks recovering.

Last September I was mounting a horse who decided to drop his head and start bucking. I jumped clear from him and landed on my feet. I ended up with an open tib/fib fracture. I shattered my distal tib (part of your ankle) and shattered both shafts on my tibia and fibula. I had 3 majory surgeries within 8 weeks to repair the damage. I have 20 screws and 3 plates that are permanant.

My foot became pulseless in the ambulance and I have nerve damage and range of motion disabilities. I will need a mounting block to mount a horse from now on. I can not point my toes to put on pull on boots so I must buy laceups and half chaps instead of tall boots. At this time it is uncertain if I will ever walk without a slight limp or if my foot will ever face straight instead of out.

I can post pictures and xrays if you are interested in seeing. If you have any questions please don't hesitate to ask!
     
    03-26-2011, 11:01 AM
  #15
Foal
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brookside Stables    
In June of 1997 a horse flipped over on top of me breaking my pelvis in two places. He reared on gravel and he lost his footing on the rocks. I was 17 years old, spent 3 days in the hospital and 8 weeks recovering.

Last September I was mounting a horse who decided to drop his head and start bucking. I jumped clear from him and landed on my feet. I ended up with an open tib/fib fracture. I shattered my distal tib (part of your ankle) and shattered both shafts on my tibia and fibula. I had 3 majory surgeries within 8 weeks to repair the damage. I have 20 screws and 3 plates that are permanant.

My foot became pulseless in the ambulance and I have nerve damage and range of motion disabilities. I will need a mounting block to mount a horse from now on. I can not point my toes to put on pull on boots so I must buy laceups and half chaps instead of tall boots. At this time it is uncertain if I will ever walk without a slight limp or if my foot will ever face straight instead of out.

I can post pictures and xrays if you are interested in seeing. If you have any questions please don't hesitate to ask!
thanks...would you mind if I used the pics for an example?if not that's fine....thanks everyone, I never expected so many ppl to respond to this. I love it...i think it might be good for other ppl to see to because ppl might be able to take something to learn from these.thanks so much!
     
    03-26-2011, 02:08 PM
  #16
Trained
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brookside Stables    
In June of 1997 a horse flipped over on top of me breaking my pelvis in two places. He reared on gravel and he lost his footing on the rocks. I was 17 years old, spent 3 days in the hospital and 8 weeks recovering.
The same thing happened to a friend of mine, but instead of breaking her pelvis, her skull was fractured. She was in the hospital for..a couple weeks? Something like that. She wasn't allowed to ride for 6 months.
     
    03-26-2011, 03:08 PM
  #17
Started
A Lucky Escape
I believe in work in hand especially after a horse has been laid off for a month or so from box rest but soon she would be ready to work again. I decided to take her out for a walk of a mile or so along the nearby country lanes. She was tacked up with a simple head collar since I did not have to hand my western training halter which will give the handler more control. Instead I used her regular inch wide fibre head collar and a metre long lead rope with knots tied in it.

We were walking along the lane quite sedately. There was no hurry. DiDi was enjoying knibbling the weeds in the hedgerows. I was admiring the scenery. It was a lovely day. We reached a stretch of the lane where the banks rose up high because the field on the right hand side was in effect the lower edge of the hill above. I thought nothing about it. As far as I was concerned, horse and handler were alone enjoying the walk.

Suddenly DiDi stopped short. Her head went up with her ears pricked high. She was tense and on alert. She had sensed something unknown. I was worried as all I had to restrain her should she decide to run was the lead rope attached to the head collar and I knew that if she wanted to use her weight against me she could do so easily. I was holding the lead rope by the fingers of my right hands and I had my left hand in a loop formed in the end of the rope to give better purchase. There were two knots in the rope which in theory allowed a firm loop to be possible but I had not checked it before we had left the yard. The loop would allow me to hold the rope with my fingers and yet I could let go of it easily should I have need to. What I was worried about was DiDi whirling around, taking off and running back home. I did not know what might be coming up the lane, it could be a walker, it could be a car. It could be nothing.

Suddenly there was a rustle and then a loud ‘MOO’. I realised there were at least a couple of cows on the other side of the hedge in the adjoining field. DiDi immediately reared up in the air taking me completely by surprise - she had never reared before. Attached to her, I stumbled and tripped forwards and the next thing I knew, I was on my knees. DiDi realised of course that she could not run and escape from the cows because she was tied to me. She pulled backwards and reared again in an attempt to escape me. But I could not let go because as I found very quickly my left hand was trapped in the looped rope. (I later discovered that I had tied the knot too loosely and one loop had slipped over the other). What was worse for me was that DiDi’s tugging was making the knot tighter and tighter and all that was stopping the knot from closing completely was the presence of my hand.

Then DiDi tugged again and this time I found myself lying face down with my arm up at a 45 degree angle, attached by the knots to the rope which ran diagonally upwards to DiDi’s head. As luck would have it she was trying to pull back and away from me. If she had moved forward then her steel shod hooves would have smashed my skull. The gap between her steel shod feet and my head was less than two feet. I could do nothing except to call out DiDi to stand. And ’stand’ I called out, trying to pick the best tone of voice for her to obey.

God Bless her, DiDi stood.

Somehow I managed to struggle to my feet but there was nothing I could do to release the rope. I did not have a knife or anything else to ease the knot apart and I would have to walk back to the stable to free it up. In the interim my hand was being crushed by the rope and all I had to save me was the fact that the hand is fundamentally a skeleton. Only by clenching my hand could I keep the relentless pressure of the knot off my hand.

After 15 minutes or so we got back to the stable yard. I removed the head collar, dumped DIDI in her stable and went off to find a sharp knife. Eventually my hand came free and I stared at this puffy, scratched, and bleeding appendage. Luckily it was my left hand. I write with my right.

The hand took a couple of months to heal. DiDi, bless her, knew there had been an incident but she had calmed down. Me, well I needed some pain killers for my bent claw.

I have had two serious horse accidents in my life. The other involved my being thrown off whilst the horse was bolting downhill. Then I got up from the tarmac and walked away, ultimately to the hospital. However over my 36 years of riding, this accident has frightened me the most. I could easily have died of a mashed skull. Luckily for me, DiDi did not want to tread on me and she didn’t.

The lesson of the day was never, ever, loop around a hand a rope at the other end of which is a horse. Always, repeat, always, be able to drop the rope. No human can match the strength of even a small horse and don’t ever think otherwise.

I still believe in walking horses in hand within the community. But I do now believe in always having a halter with bite either on the nose or the poll or even both. If you are to lead the horse, you must have the power to restrain it. If necessary take along a friend holding a second lead rope.

But never, ever, allow yourself to become tied to a frightened horse.
     
    03-26-2011, 05:47 PM
  #18
Started
I've had one decent incident for every year I've been riding, one of which was last month.

1st: was a very simple fall, I mis-counted the strides into a 30cm jump (but yet I can jump 1m no worries without mis-counting, *HeadDesk*) I would have stayed on if not for my scoliosis, which has me unbalanced anyway. So I lost my right stirrup and bubbles galloped left (she has a tendancy to get excited) so I went to grab onto her mane but caught it to late as I was already hanging off her side and heading down fast. Somehow I ended up being swung underneath her and run over, smashed my helmet to pieces and got dropped in the only mud puddle there, broke a few ribs and had a bruised hip. I only realised my ribs hurt the day after, I got back on after muich swearing and cursing at myself, and carried on half covered in mud.
-My theory of being swung underneath her is that bubbles is a very clean horse, she will do her ****dest to miss anything that remotely looks like dirt, especially if it's wet.

I'll add on the other two later I'm being pulled out to speedway, and I only want to go because I have a person to talk to about a cheap horse... That bucks. (NOT for me)
     
    03-26-2011, 07:31 PM
  #19
Weanling
I have a couple.

1st: My parents were hosing off a mare they had. It was a little bit to close to the electric fence, the water arced across the horses body, and some of the drops hit the fence. Anyway, long story short, she got the zap of a lifetime. She knocked into my mom, sent her flying 4ft or so then leaped forward and knocked my dad flying about 10ft. He broke a couple of ribs on that one :P

2nd: I was riding my moms horse through an area that we rode through all the time, no big deal. Anyway, we ended up going a little bit to far to one side and got wrapped up in hidden fence wire (electric wire, the metal kind). Anyway, it wrapped around us all the way up to MY knees. Poor thing had a flip out, bucking, rearing, spinning...that sort of thing. Anyway, I ended up having to bail (after landing on the cantle). That one wasn't fun, Mercadies (the horse) still have scars from that one.
     
    03-26-2011, 09:14 PM
  #20
Yearling
This didn't happen to me but a girl I know was ridding and her horse started bucking, she fell of the back of her horse and when the horse bucked again it kicked her right in the skull, she went into a coma for a few days and they didn't know if she would wake up/ have brain damage, she turned out to be fine, but it was pretty scary.
     

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