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**Equestrian Activities and History**:
– Horses used for practical work, police duties, ranching, and competitive sports like dressage, show jumping, polo, and rodeo.
– Horse shows featuring various disciplines for competition and recreational riding activities like fox hunting and trail riding.
– Therapeutic use of horses for human health and emotional development.
– History of horse use dating back to 3500 BC, including roles in warfare, transportation, and agriculture.
– Reintroduction of horses to North America by European explorers and inclusion of equestrianism as an Olympic sport in the 1900 Summer Olympics.

**Horse Racing and International Disciplines**:
– Types of horse racing including thoroughbred, steeplechasing, harness racing, and endurance riding.
– International and Olympic equestrian disciplines such as dressage, show jumping, eventing, and combined driving.
– Overview of the FEI’s governance of internationally recognized equestrian competitions and events like the FEI World Equestrian Games.

**Riding Styles and Competitions**:
– English riding disciplines like hunt seat, eventing, show jumping, and dressage.
– Western riding characteristics, attire, and equipment, evolved from Spanish settlers’ traditions.
– Harness driving purposes and competition categories like Combined driving.
– Horse show categories including equitation, pleasure, halter, harness, and jumping over fences.

**Rodeo and Roping**:
– Rodeo events such as barrel racing, pole bending, steer wrestling, goat tying, calf roping, and team roping.
– Types of roping activities including calf roping, team roping, and breakaway roping, reflecting real-life tasks of working cowboys.
– Rough Stock competition events like bronc riding (bareback and saddle) and bull riding, known for their physical demands.

**Safety and Injuries in Equestrian Activities**:
– High injury rates in equestrian sports, with falling from the horse being the most common cause.
– Importance of helmets in preventing traumatic brain injuries, especially in reducing the severity of head injuries.
– Types and severity of injuries, with fractures being common, and statistics on emergency department visits due to horse riding accidents.
– Rules on helmet use in competitions, including mandates by various organizations and the effectiveness of helmets in reducing head injuries.
– Criticism of horse sports by welfare and animal rights groups, focusing on concerns about animal cruelty and the negative effects on horse well-being.

Equestrianism (Wikipedia)

Equestrianism (from Latin equester, equestr-, equus, 'horseman', 'horse'), commonly known as horse riding (Commonwealth English) or horseback riding (American English), includes the disciplines of riding, driving, and vaulting. This broad description includes the use of horses for practical working purposes, transportation, recreational activities, artistic or cultural exercises, and competitive sport.

A young rider at a horse show in Australia
Lusitano riders of the Portuguese School of Equestrian Art, one of the "Big Four" most prestigious riding academies in the world, alongside the Cadre Noir, the Spanish Riding School, and the Royal Andalusian School.
Equestrian tour on traditional local breed, Icelandic horses in Skaftafell mountains of Iceland
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