Being a horse jockey involves much more than sitting on a horse. To be a successful jockey, you must be exceptionally physically fit. The exercises involved with being a jockey focus on building muscle strength, stamina and endurance, which include exercises such as yoga and running.
Balance and Flexibility
Yoga, Pilates, situps, planks, lunges and squats are effective at working on a jockey's balance and flexibility. Some exercises replicate the stances of a jockey on a horse, like squats. Yoga moves such as the Cat and Cow work core muscles of the abdomen and lower back. To do these moves, get on all fours. Exhale and round your spine up while keeping your shoulders down. This is known as the Cat. Hold this position for a few seconds then return to a neutral position. Exhale then inhale and stick your head and tailbone up while your belly sinks toward the floor. This is known as the Cow.
The goal of performing aerobic exercises is to get your heart pumping. This increases your heart and lung capacity. Aerobic exercises also work key muscle groups, such as the legs and core, which are crucial for jockeys to control their horse. Jockeys partake in daily aerobic exercises such as swimming, running, jogging and biking. During racing season, professional jockey Martin Lane rides his bikes 150 miles per week. Aerobic exercises should be done for 30 minutes, three to five times per week.
- Cleveland Clinic: Aerobic Exercise
- Cherry Hill's Horsekeeping: Balance and Flexibility
- America's Horse Daily: Core Stability for Riders
- Ark Agency Animal Insurance Services: Does Horseback Riding Provide Exercise and Physical Conditioning Benefits?
- Horse Channel: Groundwork Core Exercises
- CNN: Train Like a Jockey -The Boot Camp Producing Winners
- Yoga Journal: Cow Pose