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Horses

Horses

Few people appreciate that China invented the stirrup. Much of the country’s traditions of horsemanship have died out since the days of the Tang Dynasty, thousands of years ago, when Chinese cavalries were the best in the world. Today there’s a resurgence of interest, as equestrian clubs open in major cities. I’ve been a member of Equuleus in Beijing for the past four years. Instructors at clubs like Equuleus give lessons to wealthy Chinese and expats and at the weekend compete in national showjumping teams. But the real horsemen are to be found in Inner Mongolia and Xinjiang, where minority Mongols and Uyghur peoples produce some of the best riders and horses I’ve seen.

China’s crop of 2019

Horses in China Posted on Wed, November 27, 2019 15:32:12

China’s next generation of riders was in action in Shijiazhuang recently for round three of a seven-team league featuring riders and clubs from Beijing, Tianjin and Shijiazhuang –the three cities which will eventually be merged in one big conurbation according to government plans.

The teenagers rode over noticeably low obstacles during the two day competition at the Hebei An Na Bei La Equestrian Academy (which also uses the English name Anna Bella) which trades in horses as well as teaching the local well to do how to ride.

As is usually the case at these events the catering and on site facilities were top class, with receptionists in white gowns manning marquee tents. The China Equestrian Association, which officiated, told the prize recipient of China’s “strategic goal” of winning more medals at the Olympics. No pressure then.



China’s equestrian marketing queen

Horses in China Posted on Wed, November 27, 2019 15:27:55

She has 850,000 followers on Weibo, that makes Jiao Yu Jiao a veritable influencer in the China internet marketing world. The 21 year old, a member of the Chinese showjumping team, clearly plays a canny game. She’s featured on a Weibo platform for “fine goods” and has a partnership with the jewelry brand Longines.
Equestrian sports have long had much cachet for marketing firms in China -hence big city clubs like Equuleus in Beijing have a minor revenue stream from hosting fashion photo shoots.



China’s crop of 2019

Horses in China Posted on Wed, November 27, 2019 15:13:44

China’s next generation of riders was in action in Shijiazhuang recently for round three of a seven-team league featuring riders and clubs from Beijing, Tianjin and Shijiazhuang –the three cities which will eventually be merged in one big conurbation according to government plans.

The teenagers rode over noticeably low obstacles during the two day competition at the Hebei An Na Bei La Equestrian Academy (which also uses the English name Anna Bella) which trades in horses as well as teaching the local well to do how to ride.

As is usually the case at these events the catering and on site facilities were top class, with receptionists in white gowns manning marquee tents. The China Equestrian Association, which officiated, told the prize recipient of China’s “strategic goal” of winning more medals at the Olympics. No pressure then.