Trainer Beverly Jovais thought the following message about riding and phone use from Los Angeles Hunter Jumper Association President, Marnye Langer that appeared in their April 13 newsletter was very good and worth sharing here on the Chestnut Hill blog.
Riding is a dangerous sport, and safety is a common topic here in the LAHJA E-news because we want to encourage our riders to be safe at all times. One specific unsafe practice I’ve seen a lot of lately is playing with your phone while riding, which is not only dangerous for you, but for those riding around you as well.
I know many of us think we can multi-task well, but study after study demonstrates that humans are not good multi-taskers. No matter how busy you are, it’s not worth putting yourself and others in danger. Something or someone will suffer for it. Texting or talking on the phone or checking your Facebook status while riding is simply not smart. Unexpected things happen and horses have their own reactions to things. You may think you have everything well under control, but you can’t control your environment. Many things can happen, like someone else’s horse bucks or spooks, the wind picks up and blows a plastic bag into the arena or knocks a chair over, or a dog gets loose and runs across your path. If you are paying more attention to your phone than riding your horse, you can’t take effective action.
If you really need to answer a phone call, send a text, or update your Facebook status, then leave the warm up ring and stand in a quiet place where you are less likely to be in the way until you are able to pay full attention to your riding.
We participate in a risky sport, so let’s not add to the risk by carelessness. We all need to be responsible for ourselves and courteous to others to make sure we aren’t contributing to an unsafe environment. I want everyone to have as much as possible with your horse. Besides, we are out there because we enjoy riding and our horses. Enjoy the moments to the fullest, because we are very fortunate to be riding and showing.
See you at the shows!