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Professional Riding: Polo

Different types of the sport:
Arena and outdoor polo. Read about the history of polo at http://www.hpa-polo.co.uk/about/history_polo.asp.

Horses needed – number:
As a beginner, 1-2 horses should do suffice to practice on and play matches. This can increase to 4 as your level progresses and even stables of 10+.

Costs involved:
Horse care, tack, polo equipment – helmet, boots kneeguards and mallets, shoeing regularly, vet bills, rugs, feeding and stabling. Game entries, tuition.

Rules of game:
Arena polo is made up of 4 chukkas (each 7 minutes in length) with teams swapping horses and goal ends at the end of each chukka. Indoor is played with 3 players per team on a field 300 x 150 feet.

Outdoor polo is played on a field of 160 x 300 yards – 10 times the size of an official arena. There are four players to each team and goal ends are changed each time a team scores a goal. There are six chukkas in outdoor polo. More horses are needed for outdoor as it is a faster, more demanding and longer played game.

Links to associations:
http://www.aapolo.com/ – Argentina Polo Association
http://www.us-polo.org/ – United States Polo Association
http://www.hpa-polo.co.uk/ – The governing body of polo in the UK, Ire and other countries worldwide.
http://www.sapolo.org.za/ – South African Polo
http://www.australianpolo.com.au/ – Australian Polo Association
http://www.fippolo.com/ – Federation of International Polo
http://www.polo.org.nz/ – New Zealand Polo Association

The game is fast paced and no doubt requires a decent amount of time and money to invest in horses! The financial rewards may not be the amount invested into polo, but many would argue the thrill of the game is award enough.

“A polo handicap is a persons ticket to the world.” – Sir Winston Churchill

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