Background: Over 75% of American adults are not meeting aerobic and muscular physical activity recommendations, with the majority being females. Equestrian activities are a potential avenue to increase physical activity, especially in females who account for approximately 90% of sport participants. This study describes perceptions of equestrian activities and establishes the patterns of self-reported equestrian, barn work, and nonequestrian physical activity engagement to understand participation in activities that may sustain physical activity across the lifespan. Methods: American equestrians (n = 2551) completed an anonymous online survey with questions about perceptions and benefits of equestrian activities, demographics, and engagement in equestrian activities, barn work, and nonequestrian activities. Results: There were 2039 completed responses, (95.6% female), with representation from all regions of the United States. Professionals (20.6%), amateurs (39.1%), and recreational (40.3%) comprised participation status. Significantly fewer recreational participants perceived equestrian as physical activity and as a sport than amateurs (P < .05) and professionals (P < .05). Engagement in equestrian and barn work physical activity was significantly higher in professionals (P < .0001), followed by amateurs (P < .0001), with the lowest in recreational equestrians (P = .001). Professional and amateur equestrians engaged in significantly more nonequestrian physical activity than recreational participants (P < .05). Conclusions: Equestrian physical activity engagement is dependent on the status of participation. Equestrian, barn work, and nonequestrian physical activity do meet physical activity aerobic and muscular recommendations and should be encouraged as a physical activity for females across the lifespan.
|Number of pages||11|
|Journal||Journal of Physical Activity and Health|
|State||Published - Mar 2023|
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
The authors would like to thank the organizations that distributed the survey on our behalf, the respondents for taking the time to complete the survey and for providing insightful feedback, and our undergraduate research students who helped promote the survey. The project described was supported by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences through grant number UL1TR001998. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the NIH.
© 2023 Human Kinetics, Inc.
- activity benefits
- horseback riding
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Medicine (all)