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Riding and Pregnancy - any words of wisdom?

22 replies

iggypiggy · 25/03/2009 13:19

I have my own horse and have recently discovered I am pregnant. obviously not able to tell people until 12 weeks is up - so have continued riding for now..

But does anyone have any words of wisdom on the subject? There is confusing conflicting info out there...

OP posts:
Rosa · 25/03/2009 13:22

I was advised not to ... I just used to do social riding I do not have my own horse. Reason even though I was an experienced rider and the horse calm anything could scare him and the fall could cause a miscarriage .

Lionstar · 25/03/2009 13:34

My SIL rode up to about 22 weeks, apparently with the blessing of her midwife/doc. She has a skittish horse too. She is about 18 weeks now and still riding.

iggypiggy · 25/03/2009 16:10

See is confusing just from two replies here!

My understanding is that the risk is from falling - and that is totally unpredictable..

So you get Mary King eventing at top level at 5 months preg.. and others stopping straight away

OP posts:
Pixel · 25/03/2009 16:51

I did carry on riding for a while on my mum's supersafe horse with my first pregnancy but soon decided it just wasn't worth it. I couldn't have lived with the guilt if I'd come off and lost the baby. I gave up as soon as I knew the second time around.

However, we had a farrier whose birthday is in january and his mum still rode to hounds at the boxing day meet .

A friend of mine has always ridden when pregnant but has had very difficult births each time. She is now expecting her fourth child and her doctors have asked her not to ride this time as they think that is what is contributing to her difficulties. That's what her sister told me anyway. Something to think about there!

Pixel · 25/03/2009 16:52

Oh congratulations by the way

broguemum · 25/03/2009 19:17


I rode up to 7 months during my first pregnancy. My own horse, a rather scatty TB mare. I had no problems until the last planned ride when she shied at something and since my balance was not quite as it should have been I wrenched my right hip badly and it took me a while to be able to get off the horse.

I recovered well from that.

Roll on 4 years, I fell pregnant again. From 4 weeks in I suffered badly from pain in my right hip, I developed SPD and I still have problems with the SI joint and a generally twisted pelvis. This is over 6 years later.

So my advice, DON'T DO IT. I weighed up the risks and thought that if I was sensible the risks to my unborn child were minimal but I did not appreciate how pregnancy hormones can relax your ligaments etc and so you can damage yourself as a result of something that would have otherwise been innocuous.

Sorry for the ranty ramble. I feel quite passionate about this one and I wish someone had told me when I was up the duff the first time as I don't think I'd be in the mess I am in now.

Wishing you all the best for your baby.

lilymolly · 25/03/2009 19:27

no no no no no

Did not ride in either of my pregnancys

currently 41 weeks with no2 and am dying to ride (purely as a means to get this baby OUT)

My horse is good as gold,and is used as an Riding for the disabled horse, and i would not even contemplate it.

Too risky imvho x

Sorry x

alicecrail · 26/03/2009 12:46

I was still riding racehorses when i found out i was pregnant, but stopped very soon after. I Rode my own horses and even competed at low level eventing at 10weeks. I actually got chucked off a pony i had at 12 weeks and that hurt. I was due for a scan that week and the doctor said that baby is very well protected anyway, and the scan was fine.

Unfortunately i broke my leg getting trampled by someone elses loose horse at 19 weeks so had to stop then, but was planning on pootling about until i felt ready to stop. I think it's a very personal thing and some doctors and mw are perfectly happy and some are set against it.

iggypiggy · 27/03/2009 09:34

Thanks for all your replies

To be honest - it doesn't feel right to carry on for too long anyway (for me anyway!)

I think I will ride up until 12 weeks - just gentle hacking and schooling - no jumping. Then stop as soon as I can tell people

Is not ideal - but I can't see how else to do it without having to let the entire yard know

OP posts:
Pixel · 27/03/2009 18:49

Unless you invent a bad back, or knee, or sudden allergy to riding hats .

diedandgonetodevon · 27/03/2009 18:55

I stopped riding as soon as I found out and did as Pixel describes- purely because I play polo and have had some bad falls in the past so just couldn't take the risk.

MANATEEequineOHARA · 30/03/2009 09:54

First pregnancy I rode until 5 months, just walking around by the end of that, but in a crazy lack-of-mad-rides induced moment, I decided to try and get her to jump off a river bank into the river cross-country -style (yes I am aware this sounds quite stupid) the mare got her front legs in, panicked, tried to jump backwards out, slipped, fell, got up and was fine. I decided that obviously I cannot be trusted on a horse not to try crazy things from time to time, so I am better off banning myself!

Just plodding hacks on a calm horse are fine if you can be trusted to keep it like that!

Congratulations btw

Butkin · 03/04/2009 11:18

My DW gave up straight away - with exception of one ride on experienced pony which she needed to move from Winter to Summer paddock.

Just didn't want the risk - no matter how small.

However one thing to note about riding and having kids. My DW is extremely good horsewomen but obviously hadn't ridden by about 10 months when she came to get back on. It was about 2 months after having DD and we decided to go for an Easter hack in the park. However she'd forgotten that a) she no longer had any strength/tone in her muscles and b) the horse hadn't been ridden for ages and was fresh.

We should have stayed walking/trotting on tracks but she decided to have short canter, the horse bucked and (although she'd normally have been fine) her lack of strength caused her to fall and break her ankle. Imagine the situation - DD 2 months old, DW with broken ankle and horse galloping off! Anyway it all worked out but I'd definitely advise quiet hacking when you first start off again.

Nekabu · 14/04/2009 16:45

I'm still riding (6 months) - flatwork and gentle hacking. I have been careful (and have even got off a couple of times when he was being stupid) and it's good exercise.

elastamum · 15/04/2009 10:48

Be very careful AFTER the baby is born too. As your ligaments will have softened to allow the baby to deliver through the pelvis it is very easy to put your back out if you ride too early. Also your core strength will not be what it was and it takes a while to get your centre of balence back. Give it at least 12 weeks of exercise before getting back on a horse unless you want a knackered back like mine

alicecrail · 16/04/2009 11:40

I first got back on about 3 weeks after having dd and literally walked up and down the yard twice. It was enough!!

iggypiggy · 23/04/2009 16:24

Ah well - is academic as had an MC.

But - I did manage to fall off the silly horse the day before the MC (not related as I already knew the MC was happening by then).

thanks for all of your replies - I'll bear them in mind if I get PG again (which I hope I do!)

OP posts:
Pixel · 23/04/2009 16:41

Iggypiggy, sorry to hear that, what a shame .

iggypiggy · 23/04/2009 17:00

Well - is rubbish actually - but am focussing on competeing the wild beast to distract me - which is good distraction actually.

OP posts:
Nekabu · 25/04/2009 09:17

Good luck with your competition season. What do you have planned?

MANATEEequineOHARA · 25/04/2009 14:26

Really sorry to hear about the MC. Best of luck competing and with everything.

skihorse · 04/05/2009 14:43

A doctor friend of mine told me to keep on with all sports at least in the first trimester. He said the only way that an "injury" could cause you to miscarry would be by a piercing like trauma in your abdomen... so don't throw javelins! Apparently your baby is so well protected by your abdomenen those first few months it simply isn't possible to "bang" it.

I intend to ride when pregnant for as long as my balance/ability to get my leg over allows me. Even now I get off if she's being a total loony, I've always felt discretion was the better part of valour.

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