Horse riding is a great form of exercise which has both cardiovascular and muscle conditioning benefits. Although it may seem as though the rider is not engaging in any physical exercise, an hour’s activity can burn similar calories to that of a 30-minute jog (6mph) or cycle ride (9mph). Therefore, all the health benefits associated with engaging in regular cardiovascular exercise are gained. After your first ride you may feel muscles that you never knew you had. This is due to the movement of the horse and its effect on the rider during the ride. As the rider reacts to the horse’s movement to avoid becoming off balance, the deep postural muscles of the trunk and pelvis and the adductor muscles of the thighs are continuously being conditioned.