Tips and Hints on Endurance Riding

By definition endurance riding is a horse race against the clock over natural terrain. The winner is the first horse to cross the finish line and pass the final vet judging.

In reality, endurance can be anything you want it to be -- from a strategic racing endeavor to a glorified trail ride.

On the links below we will take you through an endurance ride step-by-step ... from the start to finish line, including hints and tips and gems of insight that would have taken you years to figure out yourself. We'll escort you down the trail, and even to a multi-day, to give you a vibrant picture of what awaits you in this incredible equine distance sport.

All sanctioned US endurance rides are run under the rules and guidelines of the American Endurance Ride Conference (AERC) which is the official national governing body for endurance riding in the United States. Upcoming rides and ride results, AERC horse and rider records, and national and regional awards can be found on the AERC website.

Starting out
  What is Endurance Riding?
  Can my horse do endurance riding?
  How do I condition my horse for distance?
Getting Ready
  Choosing the best clothing and tack to be comfortable through the miles.
  Camping essential – corrals and containment
  Hoof protection for the endurance horse
  Feeding the Endurance Horse
  Electrolytes For the Endurance Horse
Getting Set
  Entering a ride.
  Packing the essentials
  Arriving at ridecamp, Pre-Ride Vetting, and the Ride Briefing
The Start
  The morning of the ride
  Dealing with pre-ride jitters – both you and your horse
  Avoiding problems at the start
The Ride - Riding and Race Strategy
  Pacing yourself during the ride
  Vet checks made easy
  Eating is a GOOD thing!
  Paying attention to trail markings *or* “How NOT to Get Lost”
  Surviving a pull
Finish and Completion
  The finish line
  Post-Ride R&R
Moving Up
  I like this distance - do I have to move up?
  When am I ready to move up to longer distances?
  Making the Leap from Limited Distance to Endurance
  The one-day 75 or 100 - what do I need to be successful?
  I want to do multi-days - what do I need to know?
Personal Strategies for Success
  How do I ride for the Top-Ten?
  Riding crewless * or * Are Crews really necessary?
  Riding alone or riding in company - benefits and pitfalls
  Dealing with fatigue
Trail Courtesy
  Racing Etiquette
  The trail just won't let me pass - what do I do?
  Dealing with Obnoxious Horses and Road Hog Riders
  The last five miles
When Plans Go Wrong
  Equipment Failure *or* Rubs and Bumps and Lost Shoes, oh my!
  When your horse just ADR (Ain't Doing Right)
  Accidents on the Trail
Toys for the Trail
  GPS Units - how they can help you pace your ride
  Cameras - recording your ride in photos
  MP3 players - music while you trot
  Cell phones - lifeline to civilization

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