Träningsintensitet hos islandshästar i ridskoleverksamhet
Abstract: Exercise intensity of Icelandic riding school horses In Sweden, there are a total of 9500 horses at riding schools and a hundred riding schools with Icelandic horses. These horses are performing 5 million hours under rider each year. Despite this, there are very few studies measuring training intensity of horses in riding schools. Riding school horses are commonly participating in competitions during the year. However, there are no present studies on Icelandic horses training intensity at riding schools. The main goal for training is to improve fitness and capacity of the horse to sustain a long and healthy life. To reduce the risk of overtraining, that results in damage to musculoskeletal tissues and potentially cause of lameness, trainers and riders must be aware of tools that can provide a better training schedule for the horse. Heart rate monitors are easy to use and provide a good tool for an objective measuring of condition. In this study training intensity of the Icelandic horse is measured in a riding school environment. The study contains two purposes; To find out how low/high the training intensity is and to see if the horses are well prepared for the type of competition they are competing in. The hypothesis was that the horses would not reach a high intensity during training, meaning they will rarely reach a heart rate frequency over 200 beats per minute and lactate levels around and above 4mmol/ L. The horses will reach a higher heart rate frequency during the competition than during training. Five horses were measured during two weeks, totally at 8 occasions. The horse’s heart rate was measured before, during and after training. Lactate was measured by blood samples at the first occasion, immediately after the highest intensity of the training. Four horses were used to measure the heart rate under a training occasion in comparison to a competition situation. The results of the measurements showed that the horses had a heart rate over 175 beat per minute during 02.18 minutes per training occasion and 03.43 minutes during the competition occasion. The horses had a low training intensity both during training and competition. Ten minutes after the competition the horse’s heartrate had recovered to below 80 beats per minute. They were prepared for the type of competition they were participating in.
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