Four years ago, a professor at Colorado State University asked me if I would give a lecture about endurance riding in her Equine Exercise Physiology class. I gladly accepted the invitation and I have done it once per semester since. It's nice to have the opportunity to expose college students to the sport of endurance since many have never even heard of it.
The topics I discuss include:
- the basic rules of AERC.
- the horses that excel and training.
- high performance and international level competition.
- the finances.
- the business and professional aspects.
- physiology and metabolics.
During each of my lectures, I sneak in a slide about hoof care and I talk about all of the alternatives that are out there. I try to be unbiased and briefly talk about various alternatives but honestly, I go through the list of options quickly and spend extra time on my favorites; the Easyboot Glove and Easyboot Glue-On. I discuss how more and more horses are being booted rather than shod and that boots are successful in all fields, from track racing to dressage. The students always ask about the boots afterwards and I'm happy to have put the bug in their ear about it. Living near Fort Collins, I also train on a lot of very popular public trails and I'm always happy to talk to people who are interested in what's on my horse's feet.
Equine enthusiasts are everywhere so I try to make a conscious effort to get the word out. I grew up with horses but did not know the sport of endurance riding existed until graduate school. The sport of endurance riding is what exposed me to the world of booting. Previously I never thought twice about horse shoes because I had never even seen hoof boots being used. I wish somebody had told me! We should all try to expose new groups of people to our equine sports and be sure to discuss hoof care and booting, because like many, they may not even know about hoof boots.
Nobody is going to try something they don't even know exists. There are alternatives to steel shoes, lots of them. There is an Easyboot option to fit every horse's needs. Help get the word out!
PS: Join us May 11th & 12th at Remuda Run for a clinic on the Performance Barefoot Hoof with the Bootmeister.