3.5 million people have ridden a horse at least once in the last 12 months, that’s about 6% of the UK population. Over five years, 3% of all spinal cord injuries were due to horse riding accidents. Head injuries are the most common accident among horse riding enthusiasts, horse riding can be dangerous.
Today, 4th of August marks five years since the day I nearly died, I was competing with my horse “Star”, and the day has been a few weeks to the regional team competition, I was 14 during the time of the accident.
During the show, we placed fifth or sixth in the dressage showjumping went well, I left the starting box, Star and I were sitting in the first place, but then at the last jump on the course something went seriously wrong, the last jump on the course was a really large straw hay bale and it wasn’t secured properly, the 95 hay bale which is the one that I was jumping and there was the meter 5 hay bale which had wooden stakes behind it, the 95 was wedged in between the other two we think Star had the jump with his front legs and because it wasn’t secured properly it rolled meaning that his front legs got trapped underneath him and he wasn’t able to put them down to the ground.
From what I remember of the accident, we slipped off, and I remember seeing the ground and then seeing Star coming down on top of me, and then I was screaming and then it went black, I was taken to hospital, later, it was clarified that I’d broken my left arm in three places, in the bone of my wrist, was displaced which is different from being dislocated, I underwent a procedure, they opened up the joint in my wrist for them to be able to knock the bone back into place after they did this they let the circulation back into my arm put a cast on and then x-rayed at the time, the most significant injury was to my arm and we were also told to monitor for a concussion after the event, I also found random bruises on my body, it took a while for my arm to heal.
Six months later and I’d been medically cleared. after three months I competed in a sprint race athletic competition, while racing, I felt weird, my vision went on yellow and orange, my heart was pounding so fast like it was going to explode out of my chest and I couldn’t breathe.
While riding although a rotational fall is one of the scariest things you can go through as a rider. I’ve learned a lot but, one thing I do want to say is that horses are animals with the mind of their own the bond between horse and rider is irreplaceable, that’s what kept me going and I never for once felt I should quit horse riding.