Kirrilly Thompson

Is Bigger Really Better?

Is Bigger Really Better?

When it comes to research studies, most people are impressed by big numbers. But how do you define ‘big’? Against what? Weldome to Part 2 of the Science Critique 101 Series. In the first part of this Science Critique 101 series, I highlighted the need to be critical...

No Research is Perfect… That’s the Point!

No Research is Perfect… That’s the Point!

Part 1 of the Science Critique 101 Series. Science critique is absolutely necessary for interpreting all the information we can readily access these days, but before you decide to accept or reject new findings, it's important to understand that research is never...

Research Bias vs Biased Research

Research Bias vs Biased Research

This article is Part 3 of the Science Critique 101 Series.  There are four common critiques that people often defer to when they reject a piece of research. These relate to 1) sample size, 2) research bias, 3) the peer-review process and 4) funding. In Part 1 of the...

Are you Ready for Equine Agency?

Are you Ready for Equine Agency?

The term ‘agency’ is commonplace in human-animal studies and was featured in public debate via ‘The Equitation Welfare Workshop’. The event gave practitioners, equitation science researchers, vets and therapists from around the world a chance to openly discuss agency...

Research shows whipping horses doesn’t make them run faster, straighter or safer — let’s cut it out

Research shows whipping horses doesn’t make them run faster, straighter or safer — let’s cut it out

The horse racing whip debate just got harder... The Melbourne Cup is upon us. This year will be different due to COVID-19 — but one thing we don’t expect to change is concern about horses’ welfare, which seems to resurface each year. Just days before the Cup,...

Growing Your Horse’s Window of Tolerance

Growing Your Horse’s Window of Tolerance

In an earlier article, I wrote about the window of tolerance, which is kind of like the horse's emotional comfort zone. In this article, I discuss how you can grow your horse’s individual window of tolerance so they can become more resilient to the demands we impose....

The Window of Tolerance

The Window of Tolerance

The window of tolerance. It’s a mild summer evening after work and you are swinging along in the arena practicing your dressage test for next weekend. Rhythm is good and your horse seems to be taking weight evenly on all four legs. It feels like the perfect time to...

The Overlooked Benefits of Being Around Horses

The Overlooked Benefits of Being Around Horses

Benefits of being around horses. Therapeutic riding is a well-established and highly regarded equine-assisted activity for helping people with physical disabilities. Horses are also becoming increasingly recognised for their beneficial role in interventions designed...

20 (More) Reasons to Wear a Helmet

20 (More) Reasons to Wear a Helmet

Reasons to wear a helmet. Horse riding is dangerous. I’m not going to go into the statistics on horse-related injury and fatality because they are far from straightforward. Do you calculate injury rates per ride, per hour spent in the saddle or per jump attempt? ...

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