Do you take your horses swimming?

Swimming horses was something I did pretty much every summer as a kid. For most of my life before leaving for college I lived beside a lake and had easy access to horse friendly water.

My mare loved to swim. She enjoyed the water so much that upon walking knee-deep she would then stick her nose fully underwater, almost up to her eyeballs, and then blow bubbles! We swam the horses bareback and I loved how strong they felt in the water…and slippery. My mare also liked to swim to the deeper parts of the lake and then slowly let her hindquarter sink deeper and deeper. She would then push off as hard as she could and repeat…it was like riding a horse that was pretending to be a dolphin. Many times I had to pull her back toward shore as she was convinced she could swim forever!

If I had access…I would be swimming my horses! Have you ever gone swimming on a horse? What did you like or dislike about it?

I can”t wait to go to Costa Rica in January and swim horses! Check out this video of the waterfall and horses that are waiting for our clinic in January. Put the clinic on your Christmas wish list…there is a non riding spouse discounted price too! To read more about the Costa Rica clinic or to place a deposit, click here.


  1. Phione Ferreira on August 31, 2014 at 10:59 am

    hi stacy

    im really sad to hear that jac is not training with you anymore and that he is sold.while I read what you wrote I got tears in my eyes.i think jac has a special place in everyones heart that has followed his training and that everyone will miss seeing you on jac .Jac always looked like he was very happy with ypu and I one of many viewers will miss everything you taught us through your training.Hope that you’ll be able to ride Jac one more time at a show and that you’ll have that connection that you already have with him.I really hope we’ll all be able to see you aand when you talked about Roxy and your near to tears I burst out crying because she truly have caught my heart in what she did and the way you ride her one could see you guys shared a very deep bond that no one would have understood!Thanks stacy i’ll still be following you in your work


  2. Nikki B on August 31, 2014 at 4:20 am

    We quite often do beach rides here and my thoroughbred loves the water, I’m busy trying to get him to go along the shore and he’s busy sidestepping trying to get in the water, heaps of fun. The only trouble I have is he always wants to roll in the sand once he’s wet I have to be super aware otherwise he just drops and I’ve been nearly squashed a couple of times.

  3. Danny Smith on August 30, 2014 at 4:39 pm

    Thanks Janette for that reply that is exactly what I was hoping for was a little more direction when I saw this article. I have a “reactive” colt that I am working with and he loves the water from the hose after a good training session. I have a river not far away that is perfect for swimming horses (my daughter recently went there with hers), and I’ve really been thinking about trying it, but not too sure how to proceed with that colt. Now I’m “rearing” to go. (:

  4. Dale Kay (@IronHorseRacing) on August 30, 2014 at 10:48 am

    We have a lake 5 five miles away, that we swim in regularly, as well one of the mountain rides is by a lake, it’s glacier fed, so it’s cold, but the horse’s luv it, we go for a swim after riding, a great rinse and lots of fun.

  5. Janette on August 30, 2014 at 10:20 am

    I incorporate swimming with all my horse training. I have found the water to be a very good training aid, for nervous horses. The water is a great way to help shy horses have some fun. Nervous horses can overcome major anxiety in the water. It seems to be a very frightening experience the first time they swim and their adrenaline go’s through the roof. Because the water naturally restricts their ability to flee, they gain a lot of conferdence to cope with high adrenaline. It is important not to hinder their ability to swim freely until they get their conferdence, (stay off their back). If restricted by someone on their back too soon, they can panic and loose their conferdence.
    In the water is the best place to standup on their back for the first time. The water is a nice soft landing until they get comfortable with someone standing on their back.
    The only problem with this great training tool, is the cold weather. The horses don’t seem to mind, but I do.

  6. Sherry on August 30, 2014 at 8:44 am

    I have to say taking my horse swimming was my favorite thing to do in the world. I lived near a pond we called horse shoe lake was no lake but plenty big to swim our horses across.. What a blast; Wish I still lived by the water. Have a fun and safe trip to Costa Rica in January.

  7. Jaden on August 30, 2014 at 8:01 am

    Reblogged this on Swiz Itali Alps and commented:
    like riding a horse that was pretending to be a dolphin 🙂

  8. firnhyde on August 30, 2014 at 2:16 am

    I love swimming on horseback! Although I rode one stubborn mare who liked to lie down in the shallows if she didn’t feel like going deeper…

  9. Gidge Dunn on August 29, 2014 at 4:15 pm

    This is not swimming related. Blowing bubbles related. My mare likes to bob for apples in water tank. She goes up to her eyes to get that apple!!

  10. Bonney MacDOnald on August 29, 2014 at 3:59 pm

    I would love to read other replies to this question on swimming horses. I did it a lot as a kid, but don’t quite remember how it went. Do you stay astride or slide off the side and hang on to the mane? As a kid, I didn’t worry about getting hurt, but now I’m a little more careful!

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