Science & Equine

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Written by Sophie Delemarre
Posted in Rider fitness

Image by: Becky Bruce

Concussions in equestrian athletes

Horse riding is a sport in which the risk of (serious) injury is comparable to extreme sports such as rugby, motor racing and football. Many riders choose not to seek help after a fall. This happens because they don't want to appear weak, want to continue their riding routine and often have no idea of the severity of a concussion.

What this article clearly shows is that few equestrians have knowledge of concussion and the severity of a head injury. Despite the use of caps, there are still many (serious) head injuries in riders. Many instructors do have little knowledge about dealing with a head injury correctly. Many mediacal issues can be prevented by better education on this matter.

Facts About Concussion and Brain Injury

What do you do after a head-trauma? How do you feel about "Either go to the hospital or get back on"?

Expert opinion by Sophie Delemarre

I learnt from childhood on, "you must immediately get back on your horse, or you will no longer dare!". In the equestrian sport we have the unwritten rule that you either go to the hospital or you get back on. Only since I am a physical therapist and started to learn more about the severity of head-traumas I started to realize how bizarre this is.

> From: Heather et al., Sports Health 6() (2014) 136-138 (Epub ahead of print). All rights reserved to Nova Southeastern University, Fort Laderdale, Florida and University of Colorado School of Medicine, Denver, Colorado. Click here for the online summary.

Image by: Michelle Bogaert