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The Growing Trend of Riding Ponies for Adults

There is a growing trend of riding ponies and other ‘small but mighty’ equines for adults. So, what’s the appeal of these petite equines?

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By: Tracy Hanes |

Although they ride in three different disciplines in three different provinces, Tonya Cummins Amato, Jillian Scharfstein, and Celine Roy have something in common. They believe in the power of ponies. The women are among the adult riders in Canada who are eschewing large horses for more petite mounts. But these aren’t your kids’ ponies. They look like smaller versions of horses, with similar movement and athleticism. Small athletes, big talent For years, nurse Tonya Cummins Amato, 49, rode large horses, but is having a blast motoring around Ontario horse trials on her seven-year-old 14.1 hand palomino stallion, Windy Isles Get Smart (‘Smartie’). The Connemara’s name was inspired not by the old TV show, “but because I finally got smart!” She is just over 5’1” and five years ago, fell off a ladder and broke nine bones. “Ever since that, I don’t particularly like big horses,” says Cummins Amato, who owns…

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