Riding a hobby-horse is a female sport in Finland





Get to know Finland's new feminist sports craze: hobby-horsing



Finland's latest sports craze involves ballerina-like leaps, expertly executed jumps, a strong dose of athleticism — and a fake horse head.

Hobby-horsing, a sport made up mostly of Finnish teen girls, mimics traditional equestrian events, such as show jumping and dressage. But rather than ride an actual horse, competitors straddle a horse head on a long stick, replete with glued-on eyes and manes.

The sport has spawned a social media subculture among young Finns, the Associated Press reported on Sunday.


YouTube and Instagram are filled with videos and photos of hobby-horsing competitions, training videos, and horse-head making tutorials. Online discussion boards help foster a sense of community and provide a place for swapping tips.


Hobby-horsing also has a strong element of female empowerment, some riders say. Young girls are building their own scene and setting their own terms, free of strict standards and the scrutiny of official committees.


"No boys are coming and saying what we need to do, or bossing around," Alisa Aarniomaki, 20, told the AP. "I think hobby-horsing has a feministic agenda."

About 10,000 people, nearly all of them tweens and teens, are thought to be involved in Finland's hobby-horsing scene, though no official statistics exist.


Aarniomaki said she has been riding real horses since she was 10 but finds hobby-horsing to be very therapeutic. She said it's helped her navigate her parents' divorce, bullying at school, and other painful personal issues.


"It has helped me a great deal that I can occasionally just go galloping into the woods with my friends," she told the AP. "It somehow balances my mind."

Although hobby-horsing thrives on the internet and eschews rigid rules, participants still compete in real-world shows. Volunteers organize regional competitions across Finland, which culminate in an annual national championship. This year's final show in late April involved about 200 competitors.


Hobby-horse haters might say this isn't a sport at all and is merely a game for children, or an equestrian version of live-action role-playing.


But proponents point out that — along with the physically demanding jumping, prancing, and running — this sport also promotes art, friendship, and discipline, the Wall Street Journal reported in March. Finland's top equestrian officials said they agree.

"We think it's simply wonderful that hobby-horsing has become a phenomenon and so popular," Fred Sundwall, the secretary general of the Equestrian Federation of Finland, told the AP.






This world desperately needs a famine, a plague, and a war, in that order.

Does the stick have a hook on the end so it stays in place?

Freud would have loved it.

Only watched a few minutes, but how is this fundamentally different from rhythmic gymnastics?

I'd watch an over 18 age category

so it's like Quidditch

This is what happens when women are in charge of things... and they want to run countries, too. 

What the fuck did I just watch?

Bet your ass you'll soon see a male version of this with jousting though.

Da Fuq?

I support anything that develops strong thighs and glutes in women, and jumping up and down continuously will do that.

Carry on you crazy blonde sluts

This is the natural evolution of Prancercise.

shaqitup - I support anything that develops strong thighs and glutes in women, and jumping up and down continuously will do that.



I hope she wasn't as young as I'm thinking she probably was.

This will be in the olympics before BJJ or MMA, guaranteed.

A sport based on a representation of the subjugation of animals? DISGUSTING.

jasperb - I hope she wasn't as young as I'm thinking she probably was.

If so delete my previous comment.

So, those bastards aren't allowing boys or men to do this?