How often can you ride a young horse (Arab mix)? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 10 Old 12-10-2009, 03:47 PM Thread Starter
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How often can you ride a young horse (Arab mix)?

I recently bought a 4 year old Arab mix (1/8 Saddebred), he is green broke and I'm hoping to train him to do dressage. He is gorgeous!
Now I have always been told you cannot ride a horse that young every day, maybe three or four times a week.
I'm used to Warmbloods and Thoroughbreds and I really believe that is true for most of them.
But my guy has an enormous amount of energy, more then my last TB and he was off the tracks.
I've been riding every other day and turning him out on his day off, it takes him 10 minutes to become a sweaty mess, he just runs and runs in circles.
Now I'm thinking, if he's running like that anyway, I might as well ride..
I have to lunge 15 minutes before I get on to get the worst out, but he is very well behaved under saddle and not spooky at all.
Are Arabs that different?
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post #2 of 10 Old 12-10-2009, 05:02 PM
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My farrier breeds arabs and said they can be broke at 4. I dont think it would hurt to ride a 4 year old everyday. I broke a 2 year old quarter horse mare and didnt ride her very often but that was because she was only 2. The typical age for starting to jump horses is 4 so you should be just fine. I know alot of people who jump there horses at 3 ( lightly over small stuff) and it doesnt hurt them. I plan to break my guy when hes 2. Good luck! You should post a picture :)

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post #3 of 10 Old 12-10-2009, 05:16 PM
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There's not any harm riding a 4 year old every day, especially if you don't ride him into the ground. I ride my 4 year olds twice a day for about a half hour 45 min each until they get into condition, then it stretches to an hour twice, then 2 hours once a day.

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post #4 of 10 Old 12-10-2009, 07:56 PM
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I don't see everyday riding doing your arab mix any harm at all. By age 4 they typically have the physical and mental capacity to do light workouts on a regular basis. I think arabs tend to mature mentally a little later than most horses, but by age 4, you should be ok. What kind of riding are you doing? If you're jumping 3' or galloping barrels I'd say give it another year...but for 45 minute - 1 hour workouts with w/t/c I see nothing wrong. I was doing fairly regular rides on my pony mare when she was 3, and we had a pure arab mare who flourished with daily riding at age 5...this same horse had a breakdown from being put into hardcore dressage training as a 3 year old however so just listen to your horse...he'll tell you when enough's enough.

And a pic would be wonderful! :)

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post #5 of 10 Old 12-10-2009, 08:07 PM
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I would bet that you don't have the time, endurance or will to ride a 4 yo arab hard enough to hurt it. Those little horses have thier flaws but they are tough and by 4 years old they can go all day(and I mean daylight till dark).

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post #6 of 10 Old 12-10-2009, 08:22 PM
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Originally Posted by kevinshorses View Post
I would bet that you don't have the time, endurance or will to ride a 4 yo arab hard enough to hurt it. Those little horses have thier flaws but they are tough and by 4 years old they can go all day(and I mean daylight till dark).
I agree. I would however, recommend a day or 2 off each week so you don't sour the horse. I try to ride my horse 5 days a week during the summer. Winter I try to ride twice a week (I don't have lights so nights are no good for me).

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post #7 of 10 Old 12-10-2009, 08:24 PM
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the two year olds get ridden every day for like 15min. and the three year olds for (at most) a half hour and the four year olds (at most) an hour

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post #8 of 10 Old 12-11-2009, 05:57 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by kevinshorses View Post
I would bet that you don't have the time, endurance or will to ride a 4 yo arab hard enough to hurt it. Those little horses have thier flaws but they are tough and by 4 years old they can go all day(and I mean daylight till dark).
I like how you put that!! I only have an hour and a half to two hours a day for him, so I guess you are correct.
I won't worry about over doing it then and just ride as often as I can.
Because it gets dark so early we'll do arena work during the week and go on trail rides on the weekends. I'll do my best to keep it interesting for him.

It's going to be fun!!
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post #9 of 10 Old 12-11-2009, 07:22 PM
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Agreed with kevinshorses. Being 4 years old and broke, I wouldn't worry for a moment about the duration of your rides, or even how many you take in a week. My only concern would be the intensity of the rides, and for nothing other then him not being in proper shape from not being ridden. I would extend the same advice to someone with a 10 year old horse that was out of shape. So I definately wouldn't go racing around on him for hours, but Arabs are tough little buggers with a stamina that doesn't quit, so I doubt you'll find any problems asking for a good sweaty workout of walk, trot and canter for at least an hour a day.

And the fun thing about high spirited Arabians - I personally find they have a fantastic work ethic. They may get frustrated with you sometimes because they're rather just run or bounce around as opposed to having their energy channeled, but it's pretty hard to sour them or tire them out unless you're keeping it boring for them.

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post #10 of 10 Old 12-16-2009, 12:22 PM
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I have a two year old mare and I ride her probably 3 times a week and on saturdays, almost the whole day. She does fine, the only time something happened when I rode everyday was her sides got rubbed raw by the girth ( I was using a different girth than I usually did) and I couldnt ride her for like 1-2 weeks, unless I rode bareback and she still did fine. :)

The hardest thing about riding is the ground! :)
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