Back Care for Equestrians


Riding is a strenuous sport that requires the equestrian to maintain a neutral spine, while sitting in the English or Western saddle.

The saddle, is literally a backless chair, offering no support for the spine.  The rider must generate support using strong core muscles.

Little needs to be said about the debilitating effects of back pain for equestrians.  No one wants to, or should ride, when in pain.  The more uncomfortable you are, the less you’ll be able to enjoy being with your horse. He’ll miss you too.

Learning what causes back pain, and taking preventive measures, will bring many happy riding years.  The easiest, and most cost-effective solution, is exercise.


Regular exercise is highly recommended for prevention of back pain, and maintaining a healthy back.

Pilates and Yoga keeps riders both strong and flexible. Pilates strengthens your back and abs, Yoga stretches critical areas important for riding, as well as developing tranquility.

Fitness-derived core exercises are an excellent method to strengthen and stretch muscles that are vital for riders.


  • Muscle spasm
  • Awkward twisting, or bending motions
  • Incorrect lifting a heavy object
  • Spinal trauma
  • Bending down and abrupt turning around
  • Muscle imbalance
  • Coughing or sneezing
  • Prolonged sitting
  • Sports injuries
  • Aging
  • Overweight and obesity
  • Poor sitting or standing posture
  • Arthritis


  • Back Pain is one of the most common causes of doctor’s visits in the United States
  • Back Pain affects most people at least once during their lifetime.
  • Untreated back pain can make daily activities difficult or impossible.
  • Back pain affects about 60 to 80 percent of American adults,
  • More than 26 million Americans between the ages of 20-64 experience frequent back pain.
  • Back pain is one of the most common reasons for missed work.
  • Low back pain is the single leading cause of disability worldwide.
  • Americans spend at least $50 billion yearly on back pain.

From the American Chiropractic Association and The American Academy of Pain Medicine


  • Over-the counter pain relievers
  • Hot or cold packs
  • Exercise
  • Medication
  • Physical therapy
  • Complementary or alternative treatments
  • Injections
  • Surgery

Copyright 2014 Irene Pastore and Tour De Core Personal Training

Ten Reasons To Strengthen Your Core

What does the core do? Why is it so important?
A strong core stabilizes, and protects your spine. Professional, and recreational athletes with weak core muscles don’t perform optimally, and are more susceptible to injury.

People with physically demanding jobs that require lifting, moving, pushing or pulling, depend on a strong core to stabilize and protect their spine from eventual dysfunction, and subsequent injury, or chronic back pain.  Over 80 percent of all Americans have had, or will have, at least one episode of low back pain during their lifetime.

Where is the core located?
The human torso is where the core muscles and bones are found, right between your shoulders and hips.

The Core Region Covers Half Your Body 
The core region contains muscles and bones.  If you map it out, you’ll find your core muscles, on your abdomen, low back, pelvis and hips.  Core bones consist of your spinal column, pelvis and hip joints.

Ten Good Reasons To Strengthen Your Core

  1. To save a trip to the emergency room.
  2. To save time, and money on doctor’s fees, rehab, or surgery.
  3. To avoid chronic low back pain.
  4. To prevent, or rehabilitate an injury.
  5. To improve your ability to generate force and movement during sports.
  6. To avoid on-the-job injury.
  7. To acquire more efficient movement, spinal flexibility and strength.
  8. To improve balance.
  9. To improve physical fitness.
  10. To prevent an overuse injury.

Copyright 2014 Irene Pastore and Tour De Core Personal Training