Hobbyhorse Revolution

Imagine an equestrian sport where the horses are, well, hobby horses.  That’s right, stuffed horse heads attached to sticks. The type of toy you might well have “ridden” as a kid and which closely resemble the Quidditch sticks of Harry Potter.

Hobby horse show jumping
Show jumping with a hobby horse requires skill and athleticism.

But Hobbyhorsing is a serious sport in Finland where more than 10,000 athletes (mostly girls) take part. Competition in both dressage and jumping take place. Yes, the dressage looks a bit like a Monty Python skit, but the show jumping takes some real skill. I’m not sure I could ever jump 54″ with or without a Hobbyhorse.

The girls look like they are having a great time and I’m sure their parents are grateful that these horses require no food, no board, and produce no manure.

#kepparitkunniaan2017
Search #kepparitkunniaan on social media to see hobbyhorsing in action.

To learn more about hobbyhorsing, check out the Instagram hashtag #kepparitkunniaan, which translates to “respect the horses” — where the growing popularity of hobbyhorsing is most dramatically revealed

 

Advertisements

Belly Deep

Here in New England we are still digging out from the storm . . . with more snow expected over night

bellydeep

Another point of reference is Rockinghorse ranch. Some of the smaller ponies are completely submerged.

deepsnow2

 

We are expecting wickedly cold temperatures here for the next week. I really don’t like waking up to negative numbers.

this morning's temperature
I’m not crazy about negative temperatures. By the time I went to feed the horses it was all the way up to -4 degrees.

Rockinghorse Farm spring foals on the ground

Rockinghorse Farm
This spring, Rockinghorse Farm has a whole new crop of foals!

Back in 2011, I noticed a lonely toy horse, standing by itself in a lush field (Out to Pasture). I’d had one of those horses when I was a kid, although mine got a lot more use. I drove by it almost every day when I drove my daughter to school but never saw a child out there playing.

Over the past three years, the herd  started to grow. First, there was a turnout buddy. Then the herd grew to threeand later to four. After that, they started breeding (The First Foal).

This spring, the evidence of the breeding program at “Rockinghorse Farm” is evident as the herd population has exploded. Just as well they have such great pasture! I still haven’t seen any signs of humans (large or small) but I know many of us enjoy watching the herd grow. I only regret that I didn’t take pictures over the winter — it was a great way of keeping track of the snow levels!

Here’s the foundation sire for the program and what got me started on this series.

The foundation sire for Rockinghorse Farm.

 

Turnout buddy
He looked so much happier with a turnout buddy!

 

Then there were three.

 

then there were four
The wooden horse added some diversity to the herd — bringing good old fashioned lines and good, strong bone. However, the new horse wasn’t accepted into the herd for some time — they kept him on the sidelines.

 

accepted
I was glad when he was finally accepted into the herd.

 

The first foal
The breeding program started with just one foal . . . and then this year, the population exploded!

FWIW, these horses are always just as I found them. It’s fun to see how the herd interacts and re-arranges itself, so I’ve never been tempted to meddle with them.

 

Why didn’t they make Legos like this?

Horse legos
When I was a kid, back in the dark ages, Legos were bricks. Now, Legos allow you to create entire worlds. But this one? It’s the best! It would have entertained me for hours. I remember with great fondness the time I spent on the floor, moving around my plastic horses, imaging how I would ride them if they had been real. Growing up in an apartment in New York City, those figurines were the conduit to a much more exciting place.