How many days per week would you ride? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 22 Old 06-21-2011, 07:13 PM Thread Starter
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How many days per week would you ride?

How many days per week would you ride a 4 year old horse?

She is finally super fit and I want to keep her fitness up so how many days would be enough to keep up her stamina and muscle tone with out putting too much pressure on her back/joints, etc…? She just had a growth spurt and is now a solid 15 hh and 1,100 lbs of muscle! I love it

How many days of riding, how many of groundwork lunging etc… and how many of rest per week do you think would be ideal?

When I ride her it is either:

-in the ring for 20 mins tops doing gentle riding transitions through all gaits and the occasional small jump to keep her picking her feet up and paying attention and entertainment

-on different trails varied terrain at all gaits including hills etc… for a couple of hours (don’t worry my saddles don’t weigh much and neither do I)

Here's a couple photos of my monkey and I

Thanks in advance for any feedback! J
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File Type: jpg Flirt and I riding in the sun.JPG (45.1 KB, 392 views)
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post #2 of 22 Old 06-21-2011, 09:18 PM
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Well I will not be much help but I am interested in answers! In fact I posted something similar to this about a week ago and never got much of an answer.

My boy just turned four about 3 months ago but he is also half friesian and they can grow til sevenish! So I am concerned about pushing him too much. I normally ride three days a week and my partner normally does as well but somethings the days overlap.

So I would say he is ridden about five days a week between 45 minutes to an hour, normally with two rides on Fridays. He has just begun cantering undersaddle so he is doing quite a bit of work.
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post #3 of 22 Old 06-21-2011, 10:06 PM
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The training facilities I have worked at do 5 to 6 days. Depending on the stage of training changes what is going on. Lunging 20 min. Is done on all of the days. Then riding for what ever length is needed. Some times short if point was maid quickly, usa 30 to 45 min.
Now these are training barns for horses that are expected to go to week long shows and work on and off for 8 hr or more if they are a all around horse.
These horses stay very fit and are always ready for anything. This is done with all horses in training started at one, of course you are not riding the young ones just lunging or hot walker. I keep the same with my ex show horse. I do not expect him to go to shows but I want him fit enough so we can do the movements that I want.

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post #4 of 22 Old 06-21-2011, 10:40 PM
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At 4 years old, you really don't want to stress the joints too terribly much - personally I'd say shorter rides 4-5 times per week is plenty.
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post #5 of 22 Old 06-21-2011, 11:01 PM
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I dunno, but your horse is too, too cute. You are a lovely pair!
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post #6 of 22 Old 06-22-2011, 12:26 AM
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I would ride for about 45 minutes to an hour 4-5 days a week, try to give two days off that are not right in a row.
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post #7 of 22 Old 06-22-2011, 12:32 AM
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I have never brought a young horse up before, so I am wondering sort of the same thing. At what age can you really ride them? Like say a 4 hour (mostly walking) trail ride?

I would have thought a 4 yr old could do that, but maybe not. At what age do you consider them "good to go?" 45 minutes of saddle time is really nothing. But 20 minutes of lunging does sound like a lot. I would think riding in a straight line would be healthier for them then lunging them in a circle for 20 minutes.

What are your thoughts on that?
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post #8 of 22 Old 06-22-2011, 12:42 AM
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Originally Posted by JustDressageIt View Post
At 4 years old, you really don't want to stress the joints too terribly much - personally I'd say shorter rides 4-5 times per week is plenty.
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I agree. My trainer is very conservative with young ones, so I rode my 4yr old 4 days per week, 45mins max per ride. The only goals we had really were a calm, quiet, balanced, focused ride that was 90% walk, trot and only a bit of cantering. We did trot poles a bit after discovering that he absolutely loves them.

Now that he's 5, I'm up to 5 days per week, hour max per ride and we're doing more cantering. She won't start him jumping until he's at least 5 1/2.
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post #9 of 22 Old 06-22-2011, 02:28 AM
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20 min ride 4-5 days a week, would be my recommendation. But I am beyond anal, I bought a young horse hoping for a jumper. I set him over jumps three times as a 5 yr old, and they were less of a jump and more of a hiccup.
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post #10 of 22 Old 06-22-2011, 08:08 AM
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I started our Ghost at 2 1/2. The first six months, I worked him for an hour or so 4 or 5 days a week. When he learned or understood the cues, we would go out on ride for about 2 hours, maybe 2 or 3 times a week. By the time he was three, We were going on even longer rides, closer to 4 or 5 hours just on the weekends with not much work during the week.

The reason to work them more often when starting them out is to get them to learn. Unless you are planning on doing serious work or hard work, you don't need to work them as often to keep them in shape.

trailhorserider - As I said before, I was riding him long rides at three. You do need to work them up to it. I do agree that out riding a trail is better for them than lunging for a long time, even 10 minutes to me is long.

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