By Mackenzie Shuman
HorseCom is an incredible innovation in equine technology made by engineers and horse people alike in France. This product is a headset that plays music for both the horse and rider using bluetooth. From several custom playlists, or your choice of music from your own music library, you and your horse can have a more relaxed, focused ride while listening to tunes.
HorseCom was developed after Hugo, an engineer by trade, realized that his sister’s horse was calm in the barn aisle while listening to music played over the speakers, but skittish while being ridden. After three years of careful research, HorseCom was developed. Currently sold in France, the product is now available in the United States.
HorseCom is simple in design and has been thoroughly tested to ensure a positive and safe experience for rider and horse. The HCom, or the horse part of the product, is a bonnet with speakers in the ears so the horse can tune in to the music automatically. The speakers for the horse were developed with input from veterinarians, engineers, and ethologists to ensure the volume and frequency levels are safe for equine ears. Additionally, the device was designed to be water/sweat resistant, and the pouch where the bluetooth device is placed on the bonnet is made from electromagnetic wave blocking fibers to protect any horses who may be sensitive to electromagnetic waves. Horse owners can be ensured that safety is the primary concern of the HorseCom developers.
The second part of the HorseCom product is the RCom, or the rider’s headset. The RCom twists securely onto the strap of the helmet, so it can be adapted to fit any helmet. The rider controls the song, volume, voice, and phone calls. You are also able to answer phone calls from anyone, which your horse cannot hear, and can use the microphone attachment to speak back to your trainer or press the voice button on the headset to speak directly to your horse, which pauses the music. This headset is comfortable and does not get in the way of the rider while they are riding their horse.
The last part of the HorseCom product is the HorseCom Application, which is accessed once you purchase the HorseCom. On this application you can have access to HorseCom music, which is compiled by special composers and is tailored to your horses needs, such as a calming tune while being shod, or a more lively beat for exercising at the trot or canter. You can also access video tutorials created by HorseCom TV that show you exercises that perfectly accompany the specially composed music. Also, in order to determine what music to play for your horse while riding, you must first determine what your horse’s natural BPM (beats per minute) is at the walk, trot, and canter. The HorseCom Application has a BPM finder that finds your horse’s natural BPM.
The paid version of the HorseCom Application also includes the ability to connect your Apple, Spotify, or Deezer playlists through the app, a community chat option to talk to other HorseCom users, and inclusion to events, contest, clinics, demos, and more.
So how exactly does HorseCom benefit a rider and horse? HorseCom acts as a kind of music bubble for the horse, not completely blocking out external noise, but having the tunes as the foreground noise so that the horse is in sync with the music and not concerned with outside sounds. After years of research, HorseCom developers have found that horses actually naturally sync the rhythm of their walk, trot, and canter to the beat of the music being played. This means that if you chose a song that has 100 BPM, your horse will naturally walk to about that pace, simply because that is what they hear. Also, horses using the product in any situation were found to be less stressed. Their breaths per minute and heartbeats per minute were noticeably lower, and their recovery from any stressful activity to be 15 minutes faster than the horses without the HorseCom.
Use the HorseCom on your flighty thoroughbred to calm him down, your lazy school horse to give him more pep to his step, or with a distractible kid who needs their trainer’s voice right in their ear. Every horse who has tried the HorseCom bonnet has immediately looked for the source of the noise, but soon relaxes and listens to the tunes, becoming in sync with the music.
HorseCom is brand-new technology, and therefore there is no rule against it in competition. HorseCom developers are currently reaching out to both national and regional associations of each major discipline to present the product and discuss making it legal. Under FEI rules, it is legal for use in the warm up arena, as the rider headset only covers one of the rider’s ears. However, it may be wise to talk to the steward present at the show and ask if you are permitted to use the product.
HorseCom is a cutting edge application of technology into the equine industry. Its use can revolutionize the way horses and riders train together, and the way that stress is managed in everyday situations in and out of the barn. To make the investment in HorseCom is to make an investment in the future of your riding.
To find out more and preorder your HorseCom for $299.00, click here.