A well-trained horse is a magnificent athlete. Most horses, no matter what breed, can trot for many hours without resting. A fit quarter horse can sprint a quarter-mile (402 meters) in less than 21 seconds, and a talented thoroughbred can jump a fence more than seven feet (2.1 meters) tall.

Equestrian sports make the most of these skills, while also pushing human athletes to perfect their horsemanship. In sporting events, people and horses must cooperate brilliantly to succeed.