The App store is full of ways to streamline our days, ease our frustrations, and improve the quality of our lives. And yet, some of us remain excluded from the digital marketplace. Few of the available tools address the unique needs and concerns of equestrians. I think it’s time to remedy this sad situation. Here are some timely ideas for horse owners who long to use their cell phones in a more meaningful fashion around the barn:
Ride the trails with confidence, even if your horse has none. This detailed, interactive map allows you to navigate your trail ride around llama farms, dumpsites, old plastic bags caught in trees, loud weed whackers, tumbleweeds, and irresponsible kids on four-wheelers. The paid premium version also shows less obvious threats to your horse’s life, like rustling leaves and imaginary predators. Choose from eight different sensitivity settings to accommodate a variety of equine personality types, from “OTTB with PTSD” or “Greenbroke Arabian” to “Seasoned Show Horse That Has Never, Ever Left the Arena Before Today.”
Burro racing my way to better rider
fitness: Leadville, 2015
Do you ever detest shoveling manure in a snow storm? Do you occasionally dread unloading bales of hay? You won’t anymore, once you consider your horse your fitness coach. This handy app will track how much weight you lift for how many reps while cleaning stalls, how many steps you walk while catching your horse in the pasture, and how many calories you burn while doing these and other chores. It uses a sophisticated algorithm that considers variables like outside temperature, wind speed, and mud depth. Bask in your accomplishment, then tell your friends! The app lets you upload your barn work data directly to social media. Pretty soon, spinning classes will be a thing of the past, replaced by group mucking classes.
3. BULLSHIT DETECTOR
No bullshit. It was nine years ago, but I really did win the RMDS futurity.
Ever wonder whether the woman you just met at the schooling show has really spent many years riding with Charlotte Dujardin, rather than just catching a glimpse of her from across the arena while auditing a clinic once? Whether the cute guy you just met at a bar has really earned that Ranch Riding championship buckle gracing his Wranglers? You no longer have to trust your imperfect gut instinct, or act impressed in spite of niggling doubts. This app discreetly scans your conversation partner’s subtle changes in biomarkers including brain activity and body temperature to discover when a narrative diverges from the truth. Set the BULLSHIT DETECTOR to give off your choice of a high-pitched noise, a blinking red light, or a quiet vibration, depending on the level of embarrassment you wish to cause people who tend to embellish their qualifications and experience level.
Tack stores are dangerous places
Money Management for horse owners made easier! ALLGONE is a budgeting tool with categories you really need, like “Impulse purchases from Dover,” “Overpriced supplements the other boarders at my barn guilt-tripped me into buying,” “Snaffle bits that did not solve my horse’s contact issues like I thought they would,” “Vet bill for mysterious lameness,” “Clinic with Olympic Champion,” “Sport psychology sessions to prepare for attending the clinic with the Olympic Champion for which I already paid the non-refundable, outrageously high deposit.” Pie charts will let you see exactly why you are broke before the end of every month. Upgrade to the paid version if you'd like an interlock device that keeps trigger websites like Dover saddlery or Dreamhorse from opening after you've had more than one glass of wine.
Meditation in practice
Finally, a mindfulness meditation app you can use when you need it most - during training sessions and at horse shows. Let go of frustration when your horse has ideas that differ from your training goals for the day. Come back to the present moment whenever you start to consider alternative hobbies, like quilting or gardening. Includes visualization tools (choose between a picture of perfect horse-rider harmony or a pyramid of dogwood cans). For $ 2.99 extra, you can upgrade to the EGO-REBUILDER, which you will gently remind you of your past accomplishments and positive attributes in painful emergency situations, like when you pick up your score sheet for your dressage test, or after a lesson with a clinician who destroyed every shred of your self-esteem.
Which of these would you use? What did I forget? Please let me know!