ridecamp@endurance.net: [endurance] Riding on Hard Surfaces-Reply

[endurance] Riding on Hard Surfaces-Reply

Sally Aungier (Aungish@gwwpm1.unos.org)
Wed, 03 Jul 1996 10:19:00 -500

I can understand your concerns about riding on pavement.
We have a large local driving club. After of number of
years of driving our <driving> horses on pavement, I've
finally gotten over many of my concerns. Sometimes it is
the only place drivers can condition. We often do 10-15
mile interval trots (hopefully no cantering) on hard surface.
I have not noticed a trend among our local horses in having
any long term problems from this type of training. We
tend to worry more about slipping injuries and will use
borium when needed. The horses do tend to wear out
shoes pretty quickly. Now we would not expect this of
younger horses, but many of us are driving aged horses
(i.e. 16-28) who have remained pretty sound after years of
this type of work.

Also of note, in Richmond we have a mounted police
squad which patrols our downtown area. These horses
have to deal with sidewalks and hardsurface, little grass,
and a small turnout in a city stable. They work a full shift.
The same horses work these beats for years, and become
local celebrities. (they even have trading cards for the
kids). I can only think of one horse (a morgan) that has
had soundness problems, however, I can't recall if it could
have been related to the surfaces. When these horses are
finally retired from service they are usually quite old.

We also have an active carriage program at one of our
local historic city estates (public). These horses get a lot
of work on pavement and have not had any soundness
problems. As a volunteer driver in the past I had the
chance to school the horses both in the park and in the city
streets (residential usually) and never had to deal with any
of the horses being unsound.

Just some thoughts on the subject. I think that when we
are conditioning on the road we are pretty equivalent to
conditioning for a CTR or endurance ride. We do a lot of
extended and working trots. I often outride these days
and am hard pressed to keep up with the driving horses
when they extend unless I canter.

My friends have tried the various types of rubber shoes,
but have found that they are best saved for special events
(coaching weekends, etc) since they don't go the miles that
a metal shoe will.

Sally A.
who expects her horse to do it all - ride (dressage, CTR's)
& drive
Powhatan, VA