View Full Version : Riding while pregnant

Feb. 26, 2002, 04:09 AM
I am approximately 4 weeks preggo and Mr cfc is worried about the effects of riding. I have been riding at least two horses a day and people have assured me that as long as that is what my body is used to, I should be fine. I have also heard of women who have continued to ride until they were due. But, a friend of mine just told me that her doctor said absolutely NO riding. Okay, all you moms, what were your pregnancy and riding experiences? And, if you ride while preganant, does that make the baby more horsey? (I would be really disappointed if my kid did not like horses! /infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif).

Feb. 26, 2002, 04:09 AM
I am approximately 4 weeks preggo and Mr cfc is worried about the effects of riding. I have been riding at least two horses a day and people have assured me that as long as that is what my body is used to, I should be fine. I have also heard of women who have continued to ride until they were due. But, a friend of mine just told me that her doctor said absolutely NO riding. Okay, all you moms, what were your pregnancy and riding experiences? And, if you ride while preganant, does that make the baby more horsey? (I would be really disappointed if my kid did not like horses! /infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif).

Feb. 26, 2002, 04:27 AM
Showed (successfully) in dressage past five months. /infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

Talk to your doctor and shop for a leadline pony!

Feb. 26, 2002, 04:33 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Everythingbutwings:
shop for a leadline pony!<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Yep, that's the important part!!

I know Nicole Shahinian Simpson rode and showed pretty far into her pregnancy - she had that scary fall at Spruce Meadows when she was pregnant, I remember.


Feb. 26, 2002, 04:45 AM

I rode up until I was just about 8 months pregnant. The only reason I quit riding is because from day one my daughter used my bladder as a trampoline. I swear the bathroom became the best room in the house. Anyway, I would pee before getting in the saddle, then mount, as soon as my fanny hit the saddle I would have to pee again. I was pathetic.

Some women will have balance issues as their belly's increase in size. Some women don't like the different feeling in their hips as they "relax".

Everyone is diffferent. You know your body better than anyone. You and your doctor need to discuss all options.

One thing you do have to be very careful about is getting over heated. Pregnant women become hot FAST. Drink lots of water. Try not to ride in the heat of the day. Listen to your body.

I only rode my own horse at the time. Stayed in an enclosed area. Didn't do any sitting trot. No jumps.

My husband didn't like me riding as well. I understood, but....... At the time my older horse spooked while I was grazing him. He spun around and landed on my foot. Owie I thought I had broken my foot. My husband was so mad driving me to the doctor. I was fine, turned out to be a deep soft tissue bruise. But boy my husband was mad. I think I was 7/7 1/2 months pregnant at the time.

Feb. 26, 2002, 06:11 AM
My mother rode right up until the end. But she did note that she had many horses to choose from. So she avoided the spooks and the heavy heavy pullers. She also pretty much stopped jumping towards the end. It's a good chance to work on your flat work or take some dressage lessons

Feb. 26, 2002, 06:24 AM
Hey cfc, congrats!

As I mentioned at FPP on Sunday, I rode until Jan 1, and Chris was born Jan 16. (1992).

My doctor, said "No riding" and I said, "you're a control freak a$$hole". Umm..perhaps my hatred of my doctor was part of my problem w/ pregnancy /infopop/emoticons/icon_confused.gif .

Well, I was sicker than a dog, had an immune-thing reaction going to being pregnant, had to go to oncologists and they were talking platelet transfusions in the end, but there was no shaking that kid loose, so I even did a hunter pace at 6 1/2 months (the hilltopper division w/ a little girl on a pony as my partner).

The ONLY thing that kept me sane was going out and riding my horse.

I think all those immune/blood issues also put me into the deepest depression I've ever experienced, I had post-partum ecstasy at not being pregnant anymore. /infopop/emoticons/icon_eek.gif

If you do continue to have spotting, then you might be advised to take it easy until the baby settles, if I'd had a doctor with a clue, I might have listened, but he had no clue, I had no spotting, just immune reactions.

Scarlet 1
Feb. 26, 2002, 06:29 AM
It is a decision that you must make for yourself. I saw two different OBs, one didn't want me to ride at all the other expalined the risks and worked out a riding plan with me. I continued to ride, show and jump for the first four months, but was very carefull not to take excessive risks. This meant I would quickly "weenie out" if conditions were less than ideal. I shipped a horse from Virginia to Long Island to show at the Hampton Classic, but then scratched as it had rained a lot and the grass rings were very slick, and many of the adults were sliding into jumps. I ended up having a couple of lessons and had someone else show my horse in another division. A very expensive weekend, but no amount of money was worth risking the baby to me. I stopped jumping and showing after four months and hacked my very quiet horse for another month and a half, and then at about 5 1/2 months stopped riding all together. The whole time my one OB was very worried. The riding never caused a problem, but right after I stopped riding I did have two falls, once while walking accross a street in Georgetown. Whoooosh my feet just slid out from under me, it it interesting what actions turn out to the be the risky ones.

I started riding a few months after I had my daughter. The biggest surprise was not being able to fit into my chaps (added a double end snap in the front), my jeans (wore leggings for awhile), my boots (had to be stretched several times and then finally bought new ones) and my show clothes!

Feb. 26, 2002, 06:31 AM
I just remembered something.

I had spotting around week 9. I was grounded until after the 3 month point.

It takes the embryo a little bit of time to attatch to the uterus. So there is a chance of miscarriage.

If you are spotting now at I believe you said 4 weeks, I would be careful.

JMO /infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

Feb. 26, 2002, 07:02 AM
miscarriage is concerned, especially with a first pregnancy. Second trimester is the safest. I've known several people who have lost babies due to falls - not falls from horses, just falls. So it's a questions of assessing risks - the fact that many people have ridden through their pregnancy without problems doesn't mean it isn't risky.

Lisa Cook
Feb. 26, 2002, 07:05 AM
Ride if you are comfortable, if you are nervous about the idea, then probably better off staying on the ground.

For what it is worth, I rode part-way through both of my pregnancies. The first pregnancy, I rode through about 6 months, including jumping & a hunter pace @ 6 months. The hunter pace did it in for me, though...that last gallop up a long hill after about 8 miles of riding bothered my back and I stopped riding till my son was born.

The 2nd pregnancy, I stopped riding at 4 months. I was in a lesson and jumping a course that included a roll-top, which my horse always had an issue with. I jumped the roll-top, but was very nervous about it, pulled up afterwards and said "I'm done!" and didn't ride again till son #2 was born.

Feb. 26, 2002, 07:22 AM
Thank you everyone for responding /infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif. I have not seen my OB/GYN yet, so I have lots of ammunition to use if my non-horsey doctor says no riding. Obviously, if it is in the best interests of my child, I will not ride. But if there is anyway I can without doing any harm...

PS- The spotting completely stopped yesterday, so, according to the ER doctor, I should be okay. Big sigh of relief!

Feb. 26, 2002, 07:32 AM
was riding the morning I was born AND I was two weeks late /infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

Feb. 26, 2002, 07:39 AM
I rode for the first 8 months of my pregnancy. I jumped until 5 months, and rode 3 times a week for an hour a day until 3.5 weeks before my daughter was bornt. I didn't have any troubles, but you need to listen to your body. Everyone is different. I would say take some time off if your spotting, having ANY kind of trouble. My OB said that I could "continue to do what my body was used to doing" as far as excercise. I did not tell him that I rode! I did get lots of advice from other women that rode/did not ride while they were pregnant. You will know when it's time to stop/quit jumping/slow down. At this point in your pregnancy your baby is very protected, even from a fall. I will warn you, if you continue to ride make sure that you keep up with it. It is SO hard to take a week off and get back on, it just magnifies the aches/pains, etc. Good Luck and keep us informed!!!

Feb. 26, 2002, 09:06 AM
Rode till the day I delivered. Labor was only 35 minutes. I do believe my Heidi is going to be a horsie girl. Loves that swing when she gets uptight--riding always quieted her down. Now her teeth are coming in and the dog ( a Rott) seems her only comfort--chews on her ears! /infopop/emoticons/icon_eek.gif

Feb. 26, 2002, 09:17 AM
I rode when pregnant with Sumo until the fourth month; in fact, we were in Ireland on a CCI vacation (riding four hours a day) when I discovered I was pregnant.

Didn't see a doctor while pregnant but our midwives okayed the riding; if anything it was my riding instructor at the time who feared for my life and refused to stop teaching me at four months.

There may, in fact, be a correlation between riding and birthing a horse-crazed child -- that and exposure to horses at a young age. Sumo attended his first horse show when he was six weeks old.

Congratulation, BTW. The first trimester's always been the hardest for me (morning sickness, fatigue) - but if you feel healthy, the spotting ceases, do what you feel comfortable doing.

Feb. 26, 2002, 09:31 AM
Hmmmm, my daughter was at the barn before she was a week old. Dad holding her up to the horses stalls chanting "horses bad" "horses bad". So far she has shown no real interest. But, she is only 4. Time will tell. muhahahahahahahaha

Funny, this is the same Dad who bought her a great big stuffed horse for Christmas when she was two. /infopop/emoticons/icon_confused.gif

Feb. 26, 2002, 11:21 AM
And you will live to be 100 (according to Met Life).

Be sensible. What you do during your pregnancy may affect the quality of life for your child. I had spotting, and stopped riding until 12 weeks. AFter several doctor visits and all tests etc looking perfectly normal, I resumed riding. I stopped again at 4 months, just because I felt unblanced and tired and crappy.

Do what your heart and body tells you to do. It's only 9 months, and you can ride all the rest of your life. As long as your pregnancy is good, light exercise is healthy. Do what you feel good doing. You don't have to prove anything or impress anyone. Babies are a lot of work, and unhealthy ones are even more. You can give up riding for whatever amount of time to ensure your child gets the best start in life possible.

Congratulations! I hope you have a happy healthy baby!

Bawl - to cook something in water, liked bawled eggs.

Feb. 26, 2002, 01:27 PM
I rode to 4 1/2 months. At that point, my belly started to resonate at its own frequency, and I tired very easily - and then one day it took me a whole weekend to recover my ooomph from a 15 minute ride.

As far as risks go, the statistics say that you're probably risking your baby more by driving to the barn than by anything you'll do once you're there. (Auto accidents are the #1 killer of pregnant women and their unborn.) Everyone was worried about me riding, but no one asked me how far I commuted to work, or cared if I lunged or groomed or handwalked my horse.

After I stopped riding, I did a lot of hand walking (good for me and the mare) and lunging.

I'd say the most important thing is to not make plans that can't be changed. You'll probably be surprised (as I was) one day and realize you don't want to or can't ride anymore. Have a backup plan for exercise when that happens.

I found that I simply had far less energy than I was used to. My normal schedule had be bopping out to the barn before 6 then going to work. When I was pregnant, I couldn't effectively ride and work in the same day. And I needed more sleep.

The Roolet made her first trip to the barn in her first week. I went to a Mommy & Me class when she was 3 weeks... other mothers were bringing their babies out 'in public' for the first time at 3 months! /infopop/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif

Feb. 26, 2002, 01:31 PM
I think that when I get pregnant down the road...prob in a year or 2, I will be scared from day 1 to ride!!!! I could just see everything bad happening...Yet, my old trainer rode til she had her kids too!! So i don't know!! /infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif


House hunting on Long Island....we're looking at cardboard boxes..since that's all we can afford in a nice area....:)

Feb. 26, 2002, 01:36 PM
No doubt driving a car is a bigger risk statistically - after all, a lot more people drive than ride so that affects probabilities....!

But driving or not driving really isn't an option, is it, whereas riding is.

Bottom line, falling per se increases the risk of miscarriage, whether from a horse or on an icy sidewalk.

As everyone has said, it's a decision that depends on what you feel comfortable with. Lots of people continue riding, at least for a while, but lots of people scale back and reduce their risk of having a fall.

Feb. 26, 2002, 01:41 PM
True...you could slip and fall down the stairs also...or fall from anything else...I'll just stay in a padded room for 9 months..just as long as I have lots of good food to eat! /infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif

House hunting on Long Island....we're looking at cardboard boxes..since that's all we can afford in a nice area....:)

Feb. 26, 2002, 01:54 PM
Well, sometimes driving is more optional than we make it out to be. You must weigh the risks for yourself, and be at peace with them.

I have a friend who commuted over an hour each way to her work, through heavy and treacherous LA traffic, until a few weeks before she was due. She also worked long hours, and always drove solo. I personally don't think I could've handled this, and I've always made a short commute very important in my job search.

I recall a woman on rec.equestrian recounting her story of having a miscarriage while she was cleaning the oven for her mother-in-law's visit. No one blamed her for exerting herself inappropriately (rather to her annoyance).

Ask yourself, realistically, what you would do, and how you would feel, if something did happen while you were riding. Would you always blame the horses? Would your spouse? If you miscarried (and it's not all that uncommon in the first trimester), and you are riding regularly, will you blame riding? Riding may or may not be the actual cause, but humans are good at assuming cause and effect.

(My friend with the long commute just found a position closer to home. The day before the new job started, she took the car to be serviced. On her way home, not 5 miles from the dealership, the car caught on fire /infopop/emoticons/icon_eek.gif and she was lucky to escape. And after all that time accident-free...)

I did take a bad fall at the barn a few weeks after my daughter was born. I was walking on the paved sidewalk (slightly downhill), stepped on a seed pod, and did a faceplant. /infopop/emoticons/icon_rolleyes.gif Fortunately the wee one was safely at home.

Feb. 26, 2002, 04:40 PM
I know this lady, actually I've really only met her once, she did the open jumpers when she was 6 months pregnant and she was riding a few weeks ago (at 7 months) and she fell off. I would assume she is a little crazy b/c she didn't seem worried. She wuold probably still be riding but her trainer told her that she was not allowed to sit on a horse. /infopop/emoticons/icon_eek.gif

"I don't patronize bunny rabbits!" -Heathers
*Nothing is foolproof to a talented fool.*

Feb. 26, 2002, 05:49 PM
What if you break your arm or something and need surgery? Can be tricky during a pregnancy. YOu are very restricted in the drugs you can take, so any injury or illness to you can have far reaching repercussions.

Bawl - to cook something in water, liked bawled eggs.

Feb. 26, 2002, 06:28 PM
Rode while pregnant with both my children with my OBs blessing. Didn't ride as much as normal because the morning sickness was all day sickness that lasted 9+ months.

My OBs advice: Don't try to do anything you aren't all ready skilled at. Don't jump once your wieght begins to change your balance. Don't be stupid, ie. ride green horses. When you get uncomfortable stop.

Both girls ages 7 and 8 take riding lessons. The 8 year old wants to be a cowboy and the 7 year old wants to be a "horsey rider girl" and fly airplanes. Have no idea if it has anything to do with embrionic equitation.