What is an exercise rug for?

>> What is an exercise rug for?

Imagine if you were lounging around under your duvet and suddenly your coach made you run around in the snow wearing just a T-shirt! Not particularly appealing, is it? It's the same for your horse. Tornado doesn't want to be running around outside naked in winter: he'll be freezing. He needs an exercise rug!


>> Does my horse need an exercise rug?

If your horse wears a rug in winter, he'll need an exercise rug. Clipped horses need to be looked after carefully because they're more sensitive to changes of temperature.


>> What is the point of an exercise rug?

Your horse's comfort and well-being are top priorities. An exercise rug keeps your horse's sides warm. The aim is to prevent your horse from experiencing big temperature fluctuations, particularly when warming up.


>> Which exercise rug is best?

There are two main types of exercise rug:

·     Waterproof exercise rugs, which are light and breathable - perfect for wet weather.

·     Fleece exercise rugs, which are slightly heavier and designed for cold weather.



Extreme Cold

Cold and wet weather

Clipped horses or ponies


Fleece + waterproof

Unclipped horses or ponies



For clipped horses, you may want to use both kinds of rug in very cold weather. In spring and autumn, a waterproof rug will be ideal for clipped horses, and in winter you can use it on unclipped horses.


>> How should you use it?

Once you've got your saddle on your horse's back, fix the exercise rug to his back using the rip-tabs. Keep it on while you get your horse warmed up (about 15 minutes) at all three paces.


>> How should you look after your exercise rug?

Regularly machine wash your exercise rug at 30°C so that it doesn't irritate your horse's skin.


>> What about hacking?

If you enjoy hacking, a fluorescent exercise rug might be a good option for better visibility, particularly if you're riding along roads or near hunting areas in foggy weather.


>> I only want to lunge my horse. What should I do?

Walker rugs are really practical for lunging sessions as they protect your horse from the cold.

Put on your gloves and coat, cover your horse, and you're both ready to go and face the cold!