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Would you go on a riding weekend when 9 weeks pregnant?

21 replies

kittysaysmiaow · 18/04/2012 14:44

Hello lovely ladies, I'm hoping you can help with my dilemma!

After a while ttc'ing with no success, I decided to go on a riding weekend abroad with a pal. Both of us are experienced riders, typical pony mad youngsters who have ridden on and off in adulthood. In preparation for the holiday we've been stepping up the riding recently and I've been enjoying it so much and really looking forward to the trip.

Of course then I went and got my ironic BFP last week!!!! V v happy obviously, but in a right old dilemma about the riding weekend. I know the official nhs guidance is not to do ride in pregnancy, but I also know that lots of people do. I could really do with some advice...

I could go on the weekend and not ride, but I really, really want to. What would you do? Am I mad to consider it? It'll be 2.5 days of gentle hacking, no jumping.

OP posts:
Desperate2012 · 18/04/2012 15:41

You can only do what your comfortable with, but know that the baby is tiny and very well protected by your body. It won't be damaged by a car accident, how bad a fall could you have? Think about that and decide. The advice on not riding is mostly due to balance changes which can make a fall more likely later in pregnancy. FWIW I'm a very experienced rider and rode 'til 7 mos pregnant, at which point balance became an issue (more for the horse, she struggled with collection due to more weight over her withers). I was sensible tho- dressage and hacking only, no jumping, galloping or hunting. That was my comfort zone, you just need to find yours.

kittysaysmiaow · 18/04/2012 15:50

desperate thanks so much for that. I didn't know that information about car accidents, that puts riding into context doesn't it? I think I'm less worried about falling and more that the jolting might make the baby fall out Blush silly I know.

OP posts:
BonkeyMollocks · 18/04/2012 15:55

I rode at 9 weeks but only my horse. I wouldn't have got on another because I wouldn't have felt as comfortable and safe.

I kept to trotting and sensible cantering. No jumping and no mad hacks!

If you feel comfortable and happy then go for it.

If I was in your position the main thing I would be worried about was whether or not to tell the people running the hoilday/stables etc. Would they still let you ride if they knew, and at the same time I would want them to know in the case of a accident.

Congratulations btw :)

Your baby won't fall out! Grin

Notinmykitchen · 18/04/2012 16:00

I would say you'll be absolutely fine to go, as long as you feel confident doing it. If it makes you nervous or feels wrong, then it probably is. I rode up to about 5 months, and was fine, although like BonkeyMollocks, only on my own horse who I trusted completely and knew inside out!

kittysaysmiaow · 18/04/2012 17:02

bonkey and kitchen thanks very much for your reassuring posts.

Aside from the riding itself, what, if anything, to tell the stables has been playing on my mind. The holiday is in Italy and I've no idea what their attitude towards riding while pregnant would be. It isn't mentioned in any of the literature. And I wonder if I'll be asked to sign a disclaimer or similar, which could involve pregnancy. It also just seems a bit deceitful not to mention it. But if I tell them, they might say I can't ride Sad; I suspect that would be what would happen in the UK. And of course if anything went wrong I would want them to know I was pregnant.

Part of me thinks I should just tell them, and then the decision out of my hands, but at least they are aware and I have been honest Hmm

OP posts:
Desperate2012 · 18/04/2012 19:23

Here's what I'd do about telling them: say you believe you are pregnant,, but it hasn't been confirmed by a doctor (that's true- no scan yet!) and see what they say Wink

Desperate2012 · 18/04/2012 19:26

Also, I'd be concerned most about the quality of a strange horse (I went hacking in Spain 2 years ago with DH. They put me on a 2yr old and my non-riding DH on some crazy nag that kicked Hmm). So you can be more demanding if they know your preggers

Abbicob · 19/04/2012 13:45

I would also check your insurance cover too.
I rode and competed until I was 6 mths pregant when it became uncomfortable - no jumping though and my horse is very well behaved.

I would have thought you would be ok. Soem people don't even know they are pregnant that early.

mirry2 · 19/04/2012 13:50

I wouldn't do it. but then I ttc for several years before becoming pregnant so was ultra cautious abut doing any activity.

Callisto · 19/04/2012 13:56

I rode very fit hunters until I was 7 months pregnant and couldn't physically get into the saddle anymore, so I would deffo do it.

AlpinePony · 19/04/2012 14:05

Yes, I would (and did) definitely ride at 9 weeks. A sports doctor told me that to lose a healthy feotus before 12 weeks you'd have to pierce the uterus, not just bounce on the wrong diagonal! Wink

I had hyperemesis with my first which put a spanner in the works riding wise and I found it exhausting tacking up... I'd have to have a sit down after I'd done it. However, once in the saddle I felt more alive during that entire pregnancy than at any other time. I had a massive blow-out at 16 weeks with a huge long gallop through the forest and lost a stirrup - clinged on tightly!

With my second I had jumping lessons in the first trimester and when I told my instructor she looked shocked - and I said "well, would it stop you?" and she laughed and agreed it wouldn't.

Tbh, if Mary King can take a gold when 5.5 months pregnant...

Poledra · 19/04/2012 14:14

The riding school I was at knew early on that I was pg, and the (male) instructor just said
'I have to remind you that you're riding at your own risk. I also know women who have ridden up to their third trimester.'

And I rode a 18.1hh Shire horse at the time Grin

I did give up riding at 11 weeks, but that was because I had been admitted to hospital with pregnancy issues completely unrelated to riding. I wish I hadn't, because it took me 8 years to get back to it again.

Would strongly second whoever it was said to check your insurance very carefully though.

MuddyMare · 19/04/2012 14:19

I agree with the above posters, however...have you thought about what would happen in the (unlikely) event you fell off and needed medical attention? Not sure what kind of travel insurance you have but many insurance companies won't pay for anything pregnancy related, especially if it's also related to high risk sports. I know Italy is in the EU and therefore in theory you should be able to receive free treatment as an EU citizen but sometimes (speaking from bitter experience here) it is better and quicker sorting stuff privately through travel insurance.

Rosa · 19/04/2012 14:22

NO way unless you know the horse inside out .. as other posters have said ...But then I wouldn't ski either and loads have !

EdithWeston · 19/04/2012 14:29

SIL kept riding until she was too big to heave herself up into the saddle. I thought she was mad, but no harm done.

In the first trimester, the baby is so tiny, and so totally encased in the bowl of the pelvis that it's really unlikely to come to harm unless you have a pelvis-shattering accident or land on a spike. I've skied in very early PG and have been fine. PG-hormone softening of ligaments etc is very unlikely to have begun, but you do need to be alert for changes to your body. Ad don't discount how much morning sickness (if you get it) can put you off things.

I don't know about insurance angles, but do make sure someone you are with knows you are PG in case you knock yourself out an an ambulance is called. Medical staff will need to know.

kittysaysmiaow · 20/04/2012 09:47

Thanks for all the replies, appreciate it. My insurance covers me for riding but doesn't say too much about pregnancy, just that it doesn't cover anything that would be expected on the normal course of pregnancy (which I assume means that they won't pay your fees if you go abroad to give birth)

The general consensus seems that it is ok to ride, which is great. I'm thinking more and more that I will have to be upfront about it to the stables though, in case something goes wrong.

OP posts:
TheQueenOfDiamonds · 20/04/2012 11:06

I was never advised not to ride with my daughter. The midwife said to do whats comfortable and stop if i become uncomfortable.

I was far too sick to ride as it turned out though.

IS this new advice? I never asked about riding with Corey.

Booboostoo · 20/04/2012 21:10

I rode to 23 weeks when it was just too uncomfortable and I also found my thoughts about riding changed - for the first time ever all I could think about was 'don't fall off' and the negative thinking was affecting my confidence. To be honest though I would not have been happy riding a strange horse, at least with my lot I kind of knew the risk I was taking. I know you are going to an RC but other people's ideas of what is safe can sometimes be surprising.

playftseforme · 20/04/2012 21:15

I had a riding holiday booked w a friend in the south of Spain when I found I was pregnant with my first. When I went I was 9/10 weeks. In hindsight it may not have been the most sensible thing I ever did - galloping on the beach, scrabbling off a rolling horse, swerving tactics to avoid a rider ahead falling off.... Didn't mention it to the organisers in case I wasn't allowed for insurance purposes. The real problem I had was full-on morning sickness - which lasted all day. My friend knew and fed me lots of crackers/snacks/ginger, but it was tough. Ultimately I kept riding until I was 5.5 mths. You have to assess your own riding ability and what kind of risk you are exposing yourself to.

MoonlightandRoses · 29/04/2012 00:37

Given it's going to be on strange horses and there could be insurance complications, have to admit I would be reluctant (and yes, am another one who rode longer than they 'should' have).
Something else to consider, and it did take me by surprise, was how quickly I got out of breath - at the time I was riding three hours a day, six days a week, and found by around week nine that I could only manage walk and canter, nothing that required effort. My sense of balance also changed, so I found it difficult to 'sense' jumps and had to give up that aspect early on after a couple of technical dismounts...

ChippingInLovesEasterEggs · 29/04/2012 00:53

I don't think there's any reason why you shouldn't, they are so so tiny it's almost impossible to do them any damage from an external POV - but if I had had trouble conceiving, I probably wouldn't - but I'd probably spend the 9 months being ridiculously careful and protective!

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