Top Tips for surviving the winter from Paul Gaff Eventing
The winter months are always tough for any equestrian. Hopefully some of these life hacks I use will make the short days and long nights seem more bearable.
1. Don’t feel that you have to work them in awful weather. If you find it unpleasant the likelihood is he will too, and I find you only ever end up in a fight with them for 45 minutes. A 20 minuet lunging session will be plenty to stretch your horses legs and keep them fit if turn out is limited.
2. Variety is really important. I always make plenty of plans to take the horses out schooling at different venues and it keeps both your mind and your horses active to promote progression in training.
3. Make goals. The winter can seem very long, giving yourself short term goals can break up the long winter months and ensure you’re ready for the season.
4. Stay in tune to what your horse is being fed and how they are performing so as to adjust their feeding plan accordingly.
5. Use quarter sheets while exercising when it is cold and waterproof ones when wet so the muscles don’t cool down too quickly after exercise and to allow them to warm up well before.
6. A loud radio! Good music can keep moral high on a dull wet day.
7. Treat yourself. If its ghastly treat both yourself and your horses to a pamper day.. Or even just settle down to a dvd under a duvet.
8. When you break the ice on waters make sure you remove the ice so it doesn’t re freeze too quickly and thick.
9. Regularly check your horses for lumps and bumps and mud fever so you can nip it in the bud before it becomes a problem.
10. Empty your hose and put in tack room over night and make sure your taps and water pipes are well insulated to prevent freezing.
11. An electric heater in the tack room will prevent tack getting damp and mouldy.
12. Invest in good quality waterproofs and thermals. This will make those cold, wet miserable days the bit more bearable.
13. Equine hoods are a great investment to help prevent their manes from being rubbed out by their rug hoods.
14. Invest in training and communicate with your instructor.Share this