Is there anything more “summer” than PLAY? The season changes and suddenly everyone feels at peace with eating an ice cream cone, laying at the beach, and trying a new hobby. 

So, we thought we’d jump in on the playfulness and give you some fresh ideas for enjoying your four-legged friend this season. 

Outside of the normal show season, here are 10 ways to play with your horse this summer. 

1. Trail Riding: We had to start here, of course. Explore new trails or revisit your favorites. Summer weather often means longer daylight hours and more frequently pleasant riding conditions.

2. Swimming: If your horse enjoys water, find a safe location such as a pond or beach where you can go for a swim together. It’s a great way to cool off and have some fun. If your horse is new to water, take it slow and be aware that they may try to roll. As with anything new, be safe. 

3. Have a Spa Day: Summer often means shedding season (or its after-effects). Spend quality time grooming, clipping, and bathing your horse. Grooming isn’t just for show, it actually strengthens your bond.

4. Take a Lesson in a Different Discipline: Is there something you have always wanted to try? Maybe you’re a dressage rider and always wanted to try reining. Maybe you’re a jumper and think cutting could be fun. Research reputable trainers in your area and take a lesson with them! You can bring your horse, or ride one of their lesson horses. 

5. Watch Something Different: There are plenty of horse shows, competitions, and events in the summer, in all disciplines! Try watching something that is out of your zone. Gymkhana, rodeo, mounted shooting, trick riding, vaulting, team penning, drill team… Oh! And did we mention the 2024 Olympics? Pick at least one new horse sport to spectate and see what you can observe. 

6. Organize a Group Ride: Try using local Facebook groups to find community rides or organize your own! Depending on where you are located, you could meet at the beach with your horses, a fun new trail, a new arena, etc. Meet other equestrians and explore new routes.

7. Journal Your Progress: Something we don’t talk about as much as we should is journaling your rides. Grab a barn-friendly notebook and pen, and keep some notes about your summer rides. Some things you might journal about include:

  • What you did with your horse that day
  • Exercises and how you used the Equiband Pro System
  • How your horse felt, both physically and mentally
  • Any frustrations you had or ways to improve in the future

If you have an iPhone, there’s even a new way to journal on your cell phone! You could snap a photo and add to your digital journal entry. You can also add Equestic SaddleClip data to your journal entries. The clip can be used to track ride information such as time spent at each gait, each direction, transitions, and intensity, as well as gait analysis. It is now available on our website here

8. Go Camping: If possible, plan a camping trip with your horse. Many parks and trails offer equestrian-friendly campsites where you can spend a night or more under the stars. This article has some great tips for camping with your horse.

9. Try Equestrian Yoga: Did you know that equestrian yoga is a thing? Incorporate some stretching exercises or yoga routines designed for riders into your summer routine. This article shows some simple exercises you can do with a mounting block! Your improved flexibility will translate to your horse’s performance too. 

10. Do a Challenge: Summer is a fun time to try something new. Go stirrup-less for 30 days, try bareback once a week, or do an Equiband challenge with your barn friends! When you’re having fun, your horse will have more fun too. 

How the Equiband Team is Enjoying Their Horses This Summer

Equiband Co-Founder Dr. Nicole says that her summer plans include having fun with cross-training the horses, including dune rides that overlook the famous Guincho beach in Portugal! The  family herd ranges from 8 to 20 years old, so keeping a close eye on what each horse needs (and enjoys!) during the summer heat is key!

Equiband Operations Manager Dr. Lila describes her summer plans:

“As a mom of a young child, my summer goal is to establish a good work, family, and horse-hobby balance. I have a pact with a friend that we need to ride at least twice a week. I plan to compete monthly at local open shows to help motivate me to keep up with my own and my horse’s fitness. My family comes to support me at my shows, and occasionally my son will take the reins for a leadline class. We’re still waiting to see if he inherited the ‘horse gene’!”

Wrapping Up

If you loved these ideas, or have another idea to share with our community, please send us a note or DM on Instagram. 

Horses are our passion, and anytime we get to hear from you about your horse’s health is a great day! 

Happy Summer!