Skijöring is an extremely
fun and exciting winter sport that involves towing a skier behind
a horse or dog. This sport originated in Scandinavia, where it has
been practiced for centuries. Skijöring found its way to North
America in the mid 1950's, where ranchers tied the tow rope to the
horn of their western saddles and galloped down a straight track.
Generally in Europe,
the skier is directing the horse they are being pulled behind, but in
North America, skijoring typically involves two people and one horse.
One person is mounted on the horse, while the skier is towed behind.
The rider is in complete control of the horse and determines the pace
and route. The skier just needs to hold onto the tow-rope, negotiate
turns and enjoy the adventure! Skijöring also requires lots of
communication between horse, rider, and skier.
United States feature many professional skijoring competitions that
involve complex obstacle courses that each team must navigate. Skilled
and highly successful skijoring teams must be well-coordinated and have
good communication between their three members (horse, rider and skier).
can sometimes be classified as an extreme sport when using horses due
to the fast speeds and the potential dangers involved at traveling at
these speeds. This extreme version of the sport can be seen in the European
speed races, such as St. Moritz.
skijöring can be a lot of fun for people of all ages when it is
carried out safely. For safety reasons, both the rider and skier should
wear helmets for protection while skijoring. Skijöring requires
minimal equipment in addition to the horse's regular tack. A breastplate
to prevent the saddle from slipping back and a tow rope that is at least
5 metres in length with a quick release in case of emergency is all
that is needed.
was our inaugural season of skijoring at Horses of the Sun. This fun
winter activity proved to be extremely safe for all of the participants.
A helmet must be worn by both
the rider and skier at all times and the footing has to be solid, so
the horses can pull the skiers without slipping. Our only warning is
that this sport is great fun and highly addictive. All of the participants
who gave skijoring a try enjoyed it and many could not get enough. Horses
of the Sun is looking forward to offering skijöring to clients
this upcoming winter, so get your skis ready and experience a winter