Thursday, July 23, 2015

Must Read Horsey Articles of the Week

I don't generally do link compilations or anything, but I've read several fascinating articles lately and I'm nerding out a little, so fellow horse nerds, please join me.

photo by Jonathan Becker via Vanity Fair
1) How Champion-Pony Clones Have Transformed the Game of Polo

I think cloning is a little sketchy, but it's also an interesting emerging technology. It's banned by all major competitive equine organizations for fairly obvious and excellent reasons, whether you want to talk about the lack of genetic diversity or the ethical issues of cloning or the simple fact that we don't understand it well enough to do much with it.

Except polo.

Polo is a unique combination of filthy rich participants who don't blink at the 80k per clone price tag, high intensity sport that tests the endurance and durability of the animal, and horsemen who are invested in taking excellent care of their charges.

What will happen? What will we learn? I have no idea and I'm pretty excited this is going on.

photo by Skip Dickstein via Bloodhorse
2) Bode Miller Hopes to Strike Gold at Fair Hill

Whatever you think of the guy personally, no one can contest that he has competed at a very demanding sport at a very high level for a very long time and understands the demands that are put on an athlete. Again, he brings money to an admittedly already-rich sport, but what he's proposes is intruiging--instead of backtracking and loping and the occasional work, he thinks equine athletes would benefit from the same level of training that human athletes do.

Things like hill work. Sprints. Terrain.

Mixing things up to create a stronger athlete all around who stays sounder for longer.

I know there's pushback in the horse world against these methods on the logic that an equine athlete can't communicate and take care of itself the same way a human can, but as Bode points out, our monitoring abilities have improved drastically. With the money behind you to do it right (I suspect vets are making BANK on imaging here), this idea is super cool.

Will it work? Will it help rejuvenate racing? What can we learn here?

I want to know.

photo from Megan's blog.  used by permission.
3) Rider Fear

This is a comprehensive post by the blogosphere's own Megan at A Enter Spooking. As an adult ammy who struggle(s)(d) through my own fear issues, it was liberating to read through another approach that was both intelligent and articulate.

It's such a common issue, but it doesn't have to be the end of the line for nervous riders. I love this summation and I think it should be required reading for owners, riders, and trainers alike.

That's my list of fascinating reading for the time being. What else should I be looking at?


  1. Love, love, LOVED Megan's post yesterday. LOVED IT.

  2. Oh, great collection. Thank you! I'm particularly interested in that polo article.

  3. Thank you for providing me with my lunch break reading material :)

  4. Thanks for sharing! I loved Megan's post so much

  5. Great list! I absolutely loved Megan's post.

  6. Those articles were awesome! I read all three.

  7. All 3 articles/posts are excellent. Thanks for sharing!

  8. Ah thanks for linking to my post! And my pony is so cute. I'm really intrigued by cloning too, I can see how it's really tempting, I'd love a clone of Rico so I could train him from the get go and kind of have a do-over with a horse I know and love. I can also see how it's really not okay in competition (since if I could have unlimited do-overs with Rico, I could learn the exact way of training that gets him to the highest level most effectively). It'll be really interesting to see how things go with this.

    And the fitness article was really cool. It's another one where you can see it going both ways- either increased work will mean that the horse gets stronger, and stronger = less injury OR that maybe their bodies are not meant for that kind/level of work and that will lead to more injuries. I think it's amazing what has been accomplished in human-only sports with increased technology and it will be interesting to see the same applied to horse athletes too.

  9. I read that Bode Miller article too - super fascinating and I'm intrigued to see how it works out!

  10. Following the Bode Miller thing...skeptical but fascinated. As for cloning, I'd love clones of my fat yellow qh, but, you know, nature v. nurture--you're not going to get the same thing even if you think you will.

  11. Following the Bode Miller thing...skeptical but fascinated. As for cloning, I'd love clones of my fat yellow qh, but, you know, nature v. nurture--you're not going to get the same thing even if you think you will.

  12. Very interesting writing, I love to read your posts :-)

  13. I saw that cloning article earlier this week and when I read it, if I were my dog my hair would be standing on end all along my back. Crazy. Crazy. Crazy. I was thinking of blogging about it too.

  14. great list - tho i haven't read Megan's post yet since i'm kinda catching up one blog at a time... will click over shortly, since fear is definitely something very high on my radar that i've worked super hard to get under control and use to my own advantage


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...