Cock Horse riding all the fad in Finland

FinlandElla Holm and hobby horse Fede compete during the hobby horsing Finnish championships in Vantaa, Finland, Saturday, April 29, 2017. (Heikki Saukkomaa/ Lehtikuva via AP)

Thousands of Finnish teenage girls have embraced an old sport: riding cock horses.

 

Among the athletes is Alisa Aarniomaki.

The 20-years-old looks like she’s on her way to rock-band practice, with a black leather jacket, tattoo on her arm and her hair dyed red, according to the news agency AP.

But instead of a guitar she carries a stick with a homemade horsehead attached.

Although she has been riding real horses since she was ten years, she has embraced the ‘new’ sport.

And it’s not for slouches. The girls attend tournaments where they compete in jumps and dressage, and as the many videos – mainly on YouTube show – it’s physically demanding.

Aarniomaki says the hobby has a therapeutic side

– I’ve had a lot of problems. It has helped me a lot that I can sometimes gallop through the forest with my friends, she says.

The horses are usually home-made, with great diligence. Buying horses are considered ‘low caste, says Venla-Maria Uutela, spokeswoman for a Cock Horse federation in the Finnish capital of Helsinki.

An estimated 10,000 Finns have Cock Horse riding as a hobby in Finland. Almost all of which are aged 10-18 years old and all are girls.

In April, about 1,000 spectators were present during a big Cock Horse competition in a sports hall near Helsinki.

 

Source: NTB scanpix / Norway Today

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