Why is equestrian so expensive? Equestrian is the most expensive sport in the world. It’s not just that much more expensive than other sports, it’s many times more expensive.
Here are 10 reasons why equestrian is so expensive:
1) Horses are large animals with specialized needs.
2) Related equipment like saddles can be extremely costly to purchase and maintain.
3) Horses require special training and facilities, and the people who do this work are very expensive.
4) While horses can be competitive in a variety of disciplines, they primarily show animals. The competition to both qualify for and then place at the highest level of competition requires many hours as well as personal attention from trainers or specialists which is expensive.
5) The industry is small, with a limited number of top competitors. That means less competition for shows and trainers, which drives up the price.
6) Horses require large amounts of food, which can be expensive depending on the type and grade of feed. It also takes a lot of water, which is not cheap to transport or clean.
7) The sport’s best competitors are at a higher level than other sports’ top athletes due to the expense just discussed. That means they often travel farther and more frequently, adding to expenses.
8) Horses are not cheap, even as pets. The cost of caring for and feeding a horse, even a small one, can be significant.
9) Not all equestrian events are shown in the Olympics or other major competitions or televised. That means the competition is far less competitive than in other sports. For this reason, the sport’s top competitors do not command as much media attention as top athletes in other sports, which drives down the price of their services.
10) The sport is not for everyone and requires a great commitment. As a result, it does not attract as many people, which drives up the price.
In addition, while it is not a factor in pricing horse-related goods and services, another expense that not everyone knows about but affects the cost of everything else is the tax rate. The highest tax rate in the United States is in New York City, and it’s an astounding 8.2 percent. The highest combined federal-state rate is in California and it’s 13.3 percent. All of these rates are higher than the combined rate in Florida, which is at 11.5 percent. These are not considering sales taxes that might be added in many parts of the country, so this increase can be even higher.
As a result of all of these factors, quotes from professionals and experts range from $75 to $300 per hour for riding lessons and beyond for top-level competition. The start-up costs for people dreaming of becoming Olympians, who will probably not become Olympians, are said to be around $200,000 – $300,000.One top trainer estimated that a woman in the United States who buys and maintains her horse would spend approximately $30,000-$40,000 per year without showing more than two weekends per month. For people looking to buy their horse but cannot afford one at a competitive level, the cost jumps.
It’s not just the average person who is affected. The more expensive people are, the more money the sport of equestrian takes in to be shared by everyone. If an athlete is competing at a high level, they exert pressure on everyone else to pay more, which can artificially drive up prices across all equestrian-related services and products. Though these costs are not included in these numbers as of yet, they add up as well. For instance, the cost of living is higher in New York and Los Angeles than in other places.
Another thing that contributes to the high cost of horse ownership is pasture and land. Some top trainers want their clients to board their horses at their facilities, so they ask for a large amount of acreage. In addition, if the client needs access to some but not all of the time – for instance, if they work during weekdays but have free time on weekends – then such arrangements must be made as well. Some will insist that clients bring the entire horse to their facility, though others will allow clients to show and ride their horses at other facilities or events.
Though the price is high, the cost can be made easier to pay by taking advantage of all the available discounts. There are places where a person can get everything they need for less than $1,000 – and some things can be bought for even less than this amount. In addition, as a sport that attracts such a small number of individuals and does not have much competition, there are many discounts available. One horse show – the American Eventing Championships – offers college students 20 percent off their fees, which comes out to $400 off in total for one week of riding lessons.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Why are horses so expensive?
“Why are horses so expensive?” is a question that can stump even the most experienced horse aficionados. In today’s society, where the average person may be just as likely to have ridden a horse as they have flown on an airplane, one may ask themselves why they would ever pay thousands of dollars for such an animal. It’s hard not to find oneself in shock when you hear that sometimes these creatures can sell for over $100,000 apiece – and then wonder how anyone could afford them.
First off, let’s break down a few myths. According to the American Horse Sales Association, it is not uncommon for a horse to be sold for five or ten times its actual value for what is essentially a hobby. There are some things about the price of horses that you will probably want to know before you decide on one.
Most sellers are not rich people; they’re just trying to make nice things happen. – Horse farms are costly operations, so these aren’t used for anything but breeding and riding their horses.
The average rider will only be able to afford a horse that is at the top of its class.
We hear a lot about the cost of raising and training a horse but don’t realize most people have to pay for their schooling or have someone to teach them, and the few who do come out ahead. This can range from tens of thousands to over two hundred thousand dollars, depending on how competitive you want to be.
Some companies exist for little more than selling horses than actually training them. In other words, they don’t have show-quality horses but they look like they do. This is a huge industry and there are scams everywhere.
The cost of owning a horse begins with the purchase price, saddle, and tack, board while you wait to be able to afford your horse…in most cases, it costs more than you will make in your first year of riding. Horse farms require fences that can easily run into thousands or even tens of thousands depending on how you want it done and who does it for you.
You need feed, hay, cleaning supplies, and a truck to carry it all. If you have your horse you need insurance on the horse itself and liability insurance to cover yourself in case someone gets hurt on your property. At the very least you will need a barn or shed with twelve-foot ceilings at least because that is what most saddles are designed for.
Another expense not frequently mentioned is veterinary bills. I don’t mean the initial purchase of a vet-check certificate, I’m talking about the inevitable accidents and illnesses that will come. A horse can shed a shoe, break a leg and break an ankle, fall dead from simple fatigue or just get old and die. These things happen more in half an hour on a good day than in years for some people. And when it happens you want your horse to be at the best place possible to handle these things without going bankrupt or being forced to put your horse down before it is really necessary.
There are all kinds of items you can add to the price of a horse and it doesn’t always have to be about the obvious. You will need a trailer and then there is trailer insurance so it doesn’t get stolen. And when that happens you have to replace the trailer, plus your horse is stuck in a strange town or state without a home, which can cost you thousands of dollars in vet bills and boarding for at least a few days until you figure things out.
Some non-essentials could be considered a large expense. I have never owned one, but there are horse trailers that cost over $100,000.00 and some people have them. Some people like certain kinds of saddles that can cost up to $30,000.00 before taxes and shipping charges. People do things like buying really expensive clothes for their horse when they go riding, which is fine unless you are in a competitive circuit where the horse’s outfit is judged as much as the rider’s skill is.
The most serious expenses are the training and shows, which take years to learn and can easily run into thousands of dollars if it is a competitive event. There is also the cost of keeping up with your horse’s grooming and health while it is in training. The more you ride, the more you have to have done by a professional (not at home by yourself) or you will end up with unsightly scars on your horse that you may never be able to afford to have removed.
Because the horse is wasting away in a trailer, needing every minute of training and care they get, they are not being sold by any means. If you’re show-quality then you sell and/or donate them when they have outgrown the show circuit and no one else wants to buy them.
From the moment a horse is bought to the moment, he or she is sold, there are hidden costs that people fail to take into account. The original price of the horse will not necessarily be what it cost you, let alone what it will cost you to own and maintain. The total cost of owning a horse can be much greater than what has been quoted because you need so many more things and the upkeep on a good show-quality animal will always be high.
How much are horse riding lessons?
Horseback riding lessons can be expensive, but it is possible to find affordable rates if you shop around. Average rates in the United States range between $200 and $300 per hour, and it is not uncommon to pay a little more than that. It’s possible to find basic introductory lessons starting at $20 per hour. Of course, this varies from one instructor to another.
Are horse riding lessons worth it？
Sure, horse riding lessons can be expensive. But it’s a skill that will last for life and get you where you want to go.