Special Olympics Equestrian
Special Olympics athletes who compete in the equestrian events
learn to ride, develop sports skills and gain the self-confidence
to direct and control a horse.
Athletes are able to compete in a variety of English and
Western-style events, including relays, drill teams and prix
caprilli (jumping events).
Special Olympics athletes also can participate in Special
Olympics Unified SportsŪ team relays and drill teams. Unified
Sports is a program that combines Special Olympics athletes and
athletes without intellectual disabilities (partners) on sports
teams for training and competition.
During an Equestrian competition, Unified Sports team relays
and drill teams would be made up of one athlete and one partner
(two athletes and two partners for a four person team.
As in all Special Olympics sports, athletes are grouped in
competition divisions according to ability level and age
(equestrian athletes are not separated by gender).
Special Olympics Equestrian Facts
At the 1987 Special Olympics World Summer Games in Indiana, USA,
38 athletes competed in the equestrian sports competition; one
year later equestrian was added as an official Special Olympics
The 2003 Special Olympics World Summer Games hosted 137 athletes
representing 23 countries in the sport.
Today there are at least 10,877 athletes from 73 Special Olympics
Programs competing in equestrian.
Special Olympics Equestrian Events:
Stock Seat Equitation
Showmanship at Halter/Bridle Classes
Figure 8 stake Race
Drill Teams of twos and fours
Unified Sports Sports Team Relays
Unified Sports Drill Teams
Plush Stuffed Horses