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Equestrian sports

A show jumping competitionA show jumping competition Equestrian sports are events for horse and rider at horse trials and the summer Olympic Games. There are three events: dressage, show jumping and eventing (also known as hunter trials), with both individuals and teams participating. The sports have their origins in military training for mounted soldiers. Horsemanship events have been part of every Olympic Games since 1912.


Rider and horse in a dressage competitionRider and horse in a dressage competition


This event shows a horse’s obedience and balance as rider and horse perform a sequence of movements with as much precision as possible. Dressage grew out of the need to train horses for war. The animal is trained to change speed, to move sideways and diagonally around an arena, adjusting its gait and balance to improve agility. A recent variant of dressage is freestyle, when the horse and rider move to music, an event also known as "dancing on horseback".

Dressage is the French word for "training".

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