When it comes to horseback riding there is no substitute for “time in the saddle”. But this is not always practical; bad weather, work, family commitments and a whole lot of other thing often interrupt saddle time. A little pre-trip physical preparation will go a long way towards making your riding a wonderful experience. As we all quickly learn, riding uses muscles we didn’t know we had and it is best to find those muscles before the ride begins. It is much harder to admire the views and enjoy the riding with sore muscles or a chafed behind. Of course, the best way to get ready is to spend some hours in the saddle but if that isn’t possible there are some exercises that can help.
Good overall fitness, strength and endurance are helpful because riding taxes many parts of the body. Sure, the horse is burning most of the calories, but all your muscles are working to hold your position on a moving horse and the faster you go the more they work. After five or six hours in the saddle you will have had a good workout. Your legs, your back, your core and your arms all come in play.