It is important that we prepare our horses correctly to ensure they stand up to the work we are asking of them.


Its important that you build the fitness of your horse. Below is a short list of what you should be doing to build fitness:

  • Preparation before you start is important.
    • Work with your farrier to ensure that you have a good shoeing cycle.
      • Shoes should be replaced a maximum of every 6 weeks if they are in consistent work
    • Get your saddle checked especially if they haven’t been in consistent work through the winter
    • Ensure vaccinations are up to date and your horses teeth have been done by either an EDT or your vet.
  • Different surfaces are important – this helps to strengthen tendons a ligaments.
    • Road work helps with strengthening ligaments, tendons and cardiovascular fitness.
    • Hill work helps to build topline and muscle mass
    • Work on a surface should be minimised until the horse is in consistent work for a minimum of 4 weeks. This insures that the soft tissues are flexible enough to take to the surface under tension.
    • Canter work should not be done until the horse or pony is able to work consistently without breaking a sweat for at least 30 minutes
    • Gallop work should be reserved for when your four legged friend is fit. This should be when they are able to work for a minimum of 50 minutes in walk trot and canter.


It is important to know what to feed your horse in order to maximise performance and to ensure that they are maintaining weight and energy. There are a lot of feedstuffs on the market and it can be a difficult to navigate what is best for your horse or pony. It’s important to understand what the nutritional needs will be.

  • What level of work is the horse or pony in? Nutritional requirements will be lower for those not in consistent work
  • What are they going to do work wise? Nutrition for a showjumper will be different in comparison to a endurance horse
  • What is their body condition score? If over weight it is important for them to slim down before feeding for more work

If you have an queries about what is the best way to get your horse fit, then feel free to give us a call.