The use of connected devices for the optimization of racing performances in horses
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Reasons for performing the study: Safety and top-level training are equally important to achieve the best athletic performance of the race horse. Along increasing daily training-load the responsiveness of the horse and improvement in fitness should be monitored. The use of new, wearable technologies - like the Equimetre® device, an innovative product of the Arioneo Company seems to be a proper way to monitor and optimize horse´s training. Hypothesis: Regularity of the stride is inversely proportional to the stride length and stride frequency. Horses exercising in the “red zone” have a longer recovery time. Methods: 12 horses were monitored twice with the Equimetre® device while doing speed work over 1700meters. Regularity, stride length, stride frequency, heart rate, speed and recovery time datas have been recorded and analyzed. Results and conclusion: The regularity of the stride increases with the stride frequency but decreases with the stride length (p<0, 05). A horse exercising at more than 80% of its maximum heart rate will have a longer recovery time (p<0, 05). Potential relevance: Regularity of the gallop is an important locomotor parameter, which should be watched for, as irregularity can impair the whole performance. A horse exercised too often near its maximum heart rate or with a prolonged recovery time is prone to fatigue and injury.