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horse riders and body protectors, what do you think?

(47 Posts)
dolally Sun 24-Feb-08 22:38:45

dd(15)had a nasty fall during riding last november. Hurt her back, taken to hospital, xrays and everything done but no permanent damage. Dh and I want her to wear her body protector in all lessons but it seems that no-one does, except maybe in cross country. What do you think?

She says the body protector is soooo uncomfortable, is there an alternative? What are your rules/opinions/ideas?

winniethewino Sun 24-Feb-08 22:42:57

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

dolally Sun 24-Feb-08 22:49:24

love the name winnie, especially as I'm about to go and get myself another drop of white.

How old is your ds? DD used to always wear one but now she is nearly 16 and at a school wherer they don't always wear them. Hats are compulsory but body protectors are considered sissy! What do we do? She doesn't want to wear one, even after the nasty experience of being carted off in an ambulance. She's been talking about those back protectors that you can buy in the chemist, but I would doubt those are a serious alternative.

pedilia Sun 24-Feb-08 23:20:38

Very few people I wear them on a regular basis except when competing. There is not really an alternative I'm afraid.

TBH they are very bulky and although DH bought me one I only wear it when competing. Not sure what to suggest really.......

winniethewino Sun 24-Feb-08 23:23:55

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

FleurDelacour Mon 25-Feb-08 03:26:24

I insist my DDs wear one and so do I at all times, even though we live near the equator and it is HOT and not everyone else wears one where we ride. They have lighter weight ones for sale out here but they are still a bit uncomfortable- though once you are busy on the horse you don't notice. However they can be life savers and mine has saved me from cracking ribs a number of times. Thinking back, at DDs riding school in the UK everyone had to wear a back protector and a long-sleeved top else they couldn't ride.

seeker Mon 25-Feb-08 06:29:42

I'm dithering about this for dd at the moment. She is 12 and at her stables about 50% of the riders wear one. I don't and never have. I'm thinking of saying that she should wear one for hacking out and jumping but not necessarily for flat work. Or is that silly?

oxocube Mon 25-Feb-08 06:34:55

dd is 10 and she and all her friends wear them to lessons. Not compulsory but the school strongly recommends them esp once the girls are cantering and riding the more difficult ponies.

oggsfrog Mon 25-Feb-08 07:35:15

Dd is 8 and has always worn one. Safety before comfort or style I say.

fugitall Mon 25-Feb-08 08:00:49

You can get ones that are loads of squares so more flexible. I won't pay for the lesson if she won't wear the protector! Do loads of researchon google and present her with the facts to show you're not just being neurotic!

Good luck!

dolally Mon 25-Feb-08 09:37:19

great, thanks for the ideas. Will look to see if I can find a more flexible one fugitall.

seeker, no, not silly - many people say that - def wear one for jumping or hacking out but not necessarily for schooling (not a rider myself so not sure of terminology!)

Dd agrees to wearing one hacking out (they all do at the school), hats are compulsory at all times but body protectors optional.

dolally Mon 25-Feb-08 09:41:22

winnie - did you get your fracture riding?

God, gives me the heeby jeebies.

Loshad Mon 25-Feb-08 09:48:08

I only wear one when forced to tbh, and that means only when jumping competitively xc, or when hiring certain xc courses for schooling.
I hate it, find it restrictive and think it alters my position for the worse, so for showjumping, hacking, faltwork etc I don't, i do always wear a fastened hat though.

winniethewino Mon 25-Feb-08 11:57:25

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

OhYouBadBadKitten Mon 25-Feb-08 13:55:38

After watching dd have a nasty fall yesterday when her pony went daft jumping (was supposed to be trotting low jumps but pony got over excited - went into unbalanced canter, leapt over the jump and accelerated while turning) dd landed on her back/bottom.
Her only injury was a sore bum and a couple of little bruises on her lower back. I think if she hadnt had it on it could have been a bit nasty.

tori32 Mon 25-Feb-08 14:37:09

I have been riding for 20yrs and would say tbh I agree with your dd. Body protectors are uncomfortable and restrictive, which can hinder balance. I always wore one for x-country/ out hacking/ show jumping. I didn't wear it for lessons in a sand school though. Fairly soft landing on sand. Unfortunately there isn't an alternative really.
IME most severe injuries are not going to be prevented by a body protector. A hat however is a must on all occasions. Both riders I know, who have been killed ,were from severe head injuries (and had the correct hats on.)

Pixel Mon 25-Feb-08 16:42:43

I've never worn one as they weren't around when I learnt to ride. Ds has a good hat and proper boots but as he isn't going to come off the lead-rein and his pony is the sweetest angel we haven't bothered with a back protector.
Having come back into riding after a break I've invested in a new hat but was wondering the other day if I should have a back protector. I'm put off by the fact that my sister paid a fortune for one and never wears it because it is so uncomfortable (despite her pony being a bronco), and am also wondering if it is possible to get a good fit if you have a big bust? Can any <ahem> larger mumsnetters advise on this? A friend of mine has a job where she is often required to wear a stab vest, which I would think is similar to a back protector, and she says it can be very painful at times because it isn't designed for a well-built female shape.

bamzooki Mon 25-Feb-08 17:33:41

My dd (10) always wears a body protector - on my insistance initially after she was thrown into a jump and landed in a heap of poles, but now it is routine for her and doesn't mention about comfort. Mind you I haven't asked her either! grin
Also she will obviously be wearing it when Shetland racing this year - I presume it will be mandatory for the races.
There seem to be many different shapes ans styles - maybe it is worth shopping around to see if you can find something tolerable.

TheHonEnid Mon 25-Feb-08 17:36:16

dd1s fab and very experienced riding instructor says not neceassary for sand schools

winniethewino Mon 25-Feb-08 18:33:49

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Pixel Mon 25-Feb-08 18:47:42

Ah I see. Will have to investigate then, thanks.
And LOL at 'nork environment' grin

rachaelsara Mon 25-Feb-08 22:41:10

I think they protect your front as well as your back, so ribs, spleen, bowel, uterus etc. If a horse lands on you on sand, it's still going to do some damage. I view them like safety belts, a necessary evil that you get used to, and a responsibility to your child.

Loshad Tue 26-Feb-08 10:18:34

Horses don't tend to land on you in arenas though, unless you are doing something very exciting - if you are trotting/cantering around an arena, and you fall off, or get bucked off, it's highly unlikely the horse will land on you.
I've been landed on twice in 40+ years of competitive riding (mostly eventing but some other disciplines too), once horse hit fixed fence slowly and turned over, other time a just backed youngster reared right up and was silly enough to fall over backwards.
Mine certainly doesn't protect my spleen, uterus etc, I haven't seen any that do as they are cut away at the front, don't think you'd be able to move at all if they extended to uterine protection wink

Sherbert37 Tue 26-Feb-08 10:23:25

DD 13 wears one and so do most of the riders in her group. DD isn't that keen but I have stressed she will not be riding at all if she is injured so we are ok for the moment. She is cantering and jumping and it scares the life out of me (a non rider).

dolally Tue 26-Feb-08 21:06:30

Am amazed how many of you grown ups (!) don't wear one.

Winnie I'm horrified at your accident and you STILL don't wear one.

which brings me to the point

why doesn't anyone design a comfortable body protector?

did some googling yesterday and found one with an airbag (!) and the other Racesafe I think it's called...with flexible squares. Might ask dd if she would be happy with that.

The trouble is, she was fine about the body pro when she was younger it's just now, as a teenager, she thinks (and so do all the others in her class) it's not necessary for lessons. DH told her instructor after the fall she had to wear one all the time.

Instructor agreed, but it's not happening.

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