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Sato monk won gold medal for horse racing

Japanese monk Kenki Sato unexpectedly won a gold medal in individual horse racing at Asiad 16, after excelling over two heavy opponents including Choen Jai Sik (South Korea) with his compatriot and also champion Yoshiaki Oiwa in the final round.

Japanese monk Kenki Sato unexpectedly won a gold medal in individual horse racing at Asiad 16, after excelling over two heavy opponents including Choen Jai Sik (South Korea) with his compatriot and also champion Yoshiaki Oiwa in the final round.

After the victory, Sato folded his hands to recite Buddha’s name and prostrated himself to heaven and earth. Only then did people learn and know that he was a monk since he was a child. Although Buddhism’s policy is to not compete with life the monk Sato is trying to combine his passion for horseback riding with Buddhism and create his special way of life.

Responding to the AFP news agency, Sato said: “I like to ride horses and do what a monk usually does. I take both of these things seriously. I think the practice can combine horse riding well and both can support each other.”

Sato’s father was also a monk, before choosing a religious path he used to be a famous knight competed by the representative of Japan in the 1980 Olympic Games. However, unfortunately because the Olympic Games in Moscow were boycotted, he could not finish. Dream of competing in the Olympic Games. So at 7 years old, Sato was taught to ride by his father.

Since then Sato enjoyed horse racing and always considered horses as close friends. Before each race, Sato often put some salt on horseback to find luck. After winning Asiad, Sato said: “I want to thank my horse. We both helped each other to win a special victory at Asiad”.

What parents should know about horse riding for kids

Your child might love the ideas of owning and riding ponies just like imagine on the bedroom wall’s photo, but before committing to riding lessons, teach them that horse riding is more than just a fun recreational activity but also can be a dangerous (and expensive) hobby.

Even if your child begins by riding on the smallest, slowest pony in the stable, it’s worth to remember that horses are temperamental beings. You must be aware of that and sign an indemnity form. You must make peace with being falls and injuries, and prepare to invest into protective gear. 


Talk to a certified instructor

Before registering to a riding school or a lesson package, talk to a couple of instructors to ensure your child is physically and emotionally ready for lessons. While riding lessons can benefit a child in many ways, make sure that they are physically strong enough and emotionally mature enough not to lash out in anger at a horse when things don’t go their way.

Teach your child to be responsibility

If your children start begging for her own pony, make sure yo teach them the tremendous responsibility of caring for such demanding animal. Let her observe the entire process at the stables, including cleaning the stables and grooming the horse, etc. So that they understand everything that riding entails, including safety and caring for a pony. Your child must know that a real horse is a different story from those on the bedroom walls.


On your own visit each riding school before making your decision. Carefully observe and research the riding schools in your area, asking plenty of questions about the safety standards and possible hazards before settling. 

Let the children stay around horses before riding to see how your child reacts around them first before making a decision. Teach them that horses can be gentle but they won’t respond well to loud noises and sudden movements

Horse Riding Weekend Getaway in Europe

Wales, UK

The home of pony trekking, Wales is a luxury trail riding destination in the UK. There are three national parks – Snowdonia, Pembrokeshire Coast, and Brecon Beacons – there’s no other way to discover its raw beauty, intricate sandstone tops, and Celtic ruins than by horse riding.

In the northeast of Wales, you can join a trail riding weekend to the remote areas of Berwyn Mountains, parts of which are close to the Snowdonia National Park. These trails are suggested for intermediate and advanced riders.

Brecon Beacons National Park provides some of the most amazing horse riding trails in the world. Hay-on-Wye is an excellent camp for discovering the 600 miles (960km) of tracks and bridleways for all levels of riders. By far the most spectacular trails are those that cross the remote Black Mountains.

Remember the Pembrokeshire Coast Path, which runs for 186 miles (300km) along Britain’s coastline, covering many type of maritime landscape. The entire trail makes up 35,000 (10,670m) feet of ascent and descent. But you can choose to take on certain sections of the route, some easier than others.

Alentejo and Ribatejo, Portugal

Birthplace of the famous Lusitano horse, a challenging terrain, and sunny climate, Portugal is an amazing destination for horse lovers. And what better way to discover the charming countryside in the Centro Region than on a horseback?

If you’re expecting a city break beyond the ordinary, there are many equestrian facilities available near Lisbon. Just north of the capital, there are trails that are suitable for both beginners and intermediate riders such as enjoy fantastic beach rides on the Setúbal Peninsula.

In Ribatejo, one of Portugal six historical provinces, there are numerous coastal trails, passing by sand dunes and lagoons, to explore the power of the Atlantic right beneath your feet or visit the traditional Portuguese villages and taste the fantastic cuisine and wines of the region.

Have a truly authentic experience in Alentejo as you ride through the charming forests of Grândola Mountain, with their famous cork, and pine trees. This is one of the last untouched areas in Portugal, with trails suitable for all levels.

Where to Go on a Horse Riding Weekend Getaway in Europe (Part 4)

Lombardy & Tuscany, Italy

It isn’t hard to see why Italy, the nation of romance, history, and culture is such a famous horse riding destination. The country features every kind of riding terrain one could possibly wish for, from beaches and rustic path through countryside to lakeshores as well as alpine trekking.

If you’re looking forward to spending a holiday or a horse riding weekend in Italy, you can’t miss Lombardy which is home to the Stelvio National Park, the biggest protected territory in the Alps, as well as another 25 regional parks. All of which makes the area a paradise for nature lovers.

Most popular horse riding tours in Lombardy are designed around the gorgeous lakes, hills and valleys at the foothills of the beautiful Alps.

Parco dell’Alto Garda Bresciano also known as Upper Garda Park has plenty of short tracks of all difficulty levels, featuring stunning views of the lake and the mighty peaks of the Bergamasque Alps. Ride the horse through beautiful valleys, vineyards, and picturesque villages to witness a breathtaking alpine backdrop will make a lifetime memory.
The province of Como offers numerous trekking itineraries. In which, riders can ride along the lakes shores for a few hours or an entire day. The picturesque Valle d’Intelvi bridges Lakes Como and Lugano offers trails on both sides of the valley, appropriate for all levels.

However, please be aware that according to Italian law, children under 14 are not allowed to ride horse on their own on public roads.

Hilly Tuscany has trails for all levels and tastes. The many stables in the region has everything one wishes to explore in the region of unspoiled natural beauty on horseback, either for a few hours or a couple of days.

Hop in the horse and take a visit to castles, vineyards, valleys and a countryside while exploring the region’s rich history, delicious food, and finest wines. You can mix these with visits to the great art towns of Florence and Siena, or the popular vineyards in the Chianti region.

The hobby of horse riding is skyrocketing in China

The Chinese super-rich not only spend billions to collect cars, luxury brands, travel around the world, but also play polo – a type of sport belonging to the luxury goods in the world.

Polo or custard (as the Chinese call it) is considered a noble sport originating from Persia. In this subject, the player has to ride the horse while cleverly hitting the ball into the opponent’s goal to win. Each modern polo match lasts about 2 hours.

The Indians modernized the sport and opened the first polo club in 1833 in Assam. Meanwhile, the British are believed to have spread popular polo to many countries around the world. Britain’s first Calcutta Polo Club was founded in 1862 by Lieutenant Joseph Sherer and Captain Robert Stewart. In the US, the first polo match was held at Dickle Riding Academy on Fifth Avenue.

This discipline is not too strange in China. In Chinese history, the Tang emperor (617 – 908AD) had chosen the best mares to organize an entertaining match with the aristocracy in the royal capital of Chang’an.

Since then, it has rarely been a player until a recent decade, polo has gradually changed and evolved into a sport that is particularly interested in the very rich and the rich. In China, polo is an elite sport that shows elegance, class and status that is only suitable for the luxurious lifestyle of the super rich.

Tianjin Goldin Polo Club, owned by Goldin Properties Holdings, is the most valuable polo club in the country and the favorite entertainment destination for the wealthy in China. since its inception. Membership of this club has a minimum price of 380,000 yuan (over 1.2 billion).

In addition to the large racecourse area, the venue also has 4,000 stables, an international academy of horse riding training, a domed stadium and a luxurious hotel system including 12 restaurants, a wine cellar serving only The most expensive wine in the world. It is also the venue for many global Polo tournaments.

The polo events organized in the form of tickets for guests are an opportunity to expand social relations but in reality, participants have everything in hand, money and position.

Despite the high costs, Polo is gaining a foothold, as China is getting richer, more and more Chinese are willing to spend large sums of money to play sports, especially for their children.

There are clubs around the country and to sponsor a team, you have to be extremely rich. Because players need to be equipped with good horses, large polo field, all kinds of high-end equipment and professional coaches. Therefore, the target market of this sport is mostly billionaires, wealthy businessmen and their children.

The appeal of the sport lies in the social aspect for those who like to ride horses and speed enthusiasts. It is really not just about the art of sports but also the style of the upper lifestyle.

The US horse racing industry faces a big challenge (Part 2)

So why did 21 horses die in such a short time?

Rick Arthur, director of the equestrian health care agency of the state of California, pointed to a number of factors: heavy rainfall, exhausted horse numbers and impatience of coaches and race officials. when making the most of the remaining horses.

Heavy rains make it difficult to maintain the track, especially when leveling the ground to avoid puddles of water from seeping into the surface of the track. Imagine just how fragile racing horses with ankles just as slim as a bottle of Coke must move constantly on a poor-quality track.

The traditional California race track was closed on February 26 and 27 after the Breeders Dirt Cup Mile 2017 champion – Midway Naval Battle, was seriously injured during training. A race safety expert from the University of Kentucky – Mick Peterson, was brought to the scene to look for anomalies to explain the sudden increase in deaths.

Although could not find anything out of the ordinary. However, shortly after opening the door again, the racing horse Eskenforadrink became the 20th death, injured in a race and then freed by death.

Statistically, at least, coaches in California seem to be more demanding of their horses. Santa Anita’s horse racing currently has an average of 3.02 exercises per start, compared to 0.88 for the horses at Gulfstream Park in Florida and 0.42 at the Aqueduct in New York, according to Equibase horse racing news site.

Health expert Rick Arthur believes that the rules and vigilance of the authorities can be followed during the morning training hours, when 9 of the deaths occur at this time. When a horse is about to enter a race, it will be tested by a veterinarian for medical conditions and drug testing.

Ngành công nghiệp đua ngựa của Mỹ đối mặt thách thức lớn - ảnh 1

When Santa Anita officials try to figure out why their race is so dangerous, they will also have to deal with public opinion. Animal rights activists have conducted protests outside the racetrack, even animal rights advocacy organization PETA has called on California Governor Gavin Newsom to close the racetrack and ask lawyers in Los Angeles. Angeles launched an investigation into the use of drugs to conceal horse racing injuries.

Top Affordable Horse Riding Holidays (Part 2)

6 Days trip of Horse Riding in Essaouira, Diabat
Having dreamt of a Moroccan adventure? Why not turn that dream a reality by joining a horse riding holiday in Morocco?

Ranch de Diabat offers a holiday which allow you to explore the various landscape of Essaouira – Including the vast sand dunes, the deserted beaches and the peaceful fishing villages.
On this trip, walking along trails and across rivers for a minimum of 5 hours a day. In the evenings, you will enjoy traditional Moroccan meals at the bivouac as you feel the warmth of the campfire before laying on the hay in a Berber tent.
On the final day, you will be able to experience the coastline and the city of Souiri where you will have spare time to shopping or having a traditional massage before finishing the night with a lovely dinner at a beautiful hotel in Essouira.

Price: Starts at US$666 per person for All year round
Skill level: Appropriate for Intermediate & Advanced riders

4 Days Midweek Horse Riding Getaway in Queensland
Thinking about going on a quick horse riding trip during the middle of the week? Worry not. If you currently in Australia, this is the perfect excursion for you!

Situated in Lockyer Valley, Queensland, the friendly people at Fordsdale Horseback Adventures will welcome you with open arms like no other.
Lucky for you, situated just a short trip from Brisbane, Queensland is one of Australia’s top horse riding places which means that there are plenty of amazing trails for you to explore during your trip!
There are two options to choose from – The first is appropriate for beginners which includes riding lessons in the farm’s round yard in the morning and afternoons, before short trail rides. The other option is perfect for intermediate and advanced riders where they can enjoy longer trail rides with or without riding lessons

The US horse racing industry faces a big challenge (Part 1)

Nowadays, we can see that the US horse racing industry is facing with a very big challenge.

The horse is directly contributing about the US $50 billion to the US economy and creating nearly 1 million jobs in 2017 alone, according to American Horse Council.

As the North American Triple Crown season (including the three Kentucky Derby, Preakness, and Belmont – ND races) approaches, the focus of attention should be on the championship candidates of the Kentucky Derby. Instead, the Santa Anita racetrack had to suspend activities due to a mass death of horses, prompting people to question the safety of the track.

A foal named Lets Light the Way was recently found dead after breaking a sesame bone in his ankle joint. Since December 26 last year, a total of 21 horse racing events have been killed when participating in competitions or training in Santa. Earlier in 2017, there were 20 deaths within 122 days of racing, according to Jockey Club’s horse racing distribution company.

This is the second time in 8 days that the famous racetrack under the San Gabriel Mountains has been closed. Since the 2008 Kentucky Derby, when the young horse Eight Belles was killed after finishing second, the entertainment industry officials have been concerned that a similar incident could have caused the sport to become lost.

In a series of incidents in 2012, 24 racing horses died each week at racetracks across the United States, many of whom suffered from drug shock or lack of regulatory protection. This has driven regulations that help protect racing horses across the country and minimize the number of deaths.

For example, in 2017, the race rate of death was only about 1.61/1,000, compared to 2/1000 in 2009. In California, the number of dead horses has decreased by 60% in the last 13 years, with most of the decline in the past few years, according to the California Equestrian Council.

Top Affordable Horse Riding Holidays (Part 1)

This is the resource for planning your horse riding holidays with recommendation of the top destinations to take your riding skills to new heights. 

While horse riding is often considered as an activity that comes with an expensive price tag, this is not necessarily true. 

Horse riding can actually be expensive but there are lots of options available across the world that allow you to have an unforgettable and high quality horse riding trip without breaking your budget.

There are many surprising budget horse riding vacations for you and your loved ones

Horse Riding in Paradise Valley and South Desert of the High Atlas Mountains, Morocco can cost around US$150/day for group of 15 people including accommodation and meals.

Horse Riding Trip in Andalusia

If you’re a horse riding lover, you probably already dream about Andalusia which is one of the world’s top horse riding place where you will be able to explore the best of the Spain region has to offer within a weeklong horse riding excursion.

Team of experienced riders and tour guides of Horse Riding Andalusia, will offer you the opportunity to ride and bond with different types of horse breeds whichever horse you like, they are sure footed, cared and well-trained.

Each day, you will be offered at least 4 hours of riding – where you can enjoy breathtaking trails in the nature reserve situated just a mile away from any accommodation you decide to stay at. During your ride, you will encounter various local wildlife including mountain goats, deers, giraffes, eagles, and wild boars. It’s a vacation ideal for wildlife and natural fan. 

Soak in the Spanish hot sun and fresh air while experience Andalusian countryside life where things are simple, rustic but always enchanting. This group and family friendly horse riding excursion also includes a guided tour from the city of Granada. It will surely leave you wanting so much more!

Price: Starts at $69/Day for all level of skill

Availability: All year round

Painting cowhide like a zebra is a great way to protect the environment

What is cow hair paint like zebra? Why is the way to protect the environment?

According to a recent study published in PLOS ONE, scientists have proposed a strange project: zebra-like cow paint, whose purpose is to protect the environment.

All explanations are based on the hypothesis, the most common of which is that the stripes are responsible for scattering heat, helping zebras to regulate their body temperature in hot African weather. However, this hypothesis has been proved to be incorrect by the experiment.

After the above test, two more theories were considered to be quite relevant regarding this zebra coat. First, the zebra fur is a very special method of camouflage, which will create a visual illusion when they run and make the pursuers feel dizzy.

The second hypothesis involves distracting blood-sucking bugs: the reflected light in the black and white hair area is different, so the insects will have a geolocation noise and they will avoid the fur.

Based on these two theories, scientists in Japan have proposed the idea of ​​painting fur for zebra breeds. Specifically, experts painted a zebra coat for a group of cows, painted black stripes for another group of black cows, and left a group without any repairs. They then observed their fly-chasing behavior (wagging their tails, waving their ears), the number of flies and insects, counting each peanut and recording it.

Results showed that the “zebra” cows had a 50% lower rate of flies attack compared to the black and unpainted groups (the other two groups had no difference). In addition, the number of times they have to perform “chasing flies” of the zebra group is also less than 20%, because they are no longer bothered by bugs.

But what does that have to do with protecting the environment? It turned out to be completely related. The research team believes that this result can experiment on a large scale since current methods of killing flies when using cattle are mainly pesticides.

Zebra paint for cows is not only cheaper but also less toxic, makes them healthier and does not pollute the environment. This is a great alternative for pesticides, improving the quality of life for cows and non-toxic to humans. On top of that, it also eliminates the resistance of pests to insects.