As a researcher in the UK College of Health Sciences, Carl Mattacola spearheads the Equine Jockey/Rider Injury Prevention Initiative, a first step toward building a medical model for jockeys that is similar to the care offered to athletes in other sports, including hockey, NASCAR racing and football. The initiative aims to provide jockeys with proper management, biomechanical assessments and injury prevention.
“A horse race is a pretty high powered event. … You have to be strong and balanced to maintain control of this 1,000-pound horse going about 30 miles per hour,” Mattacola said. “We spend most of our time focused on the horse, but the rider is an athlete, too, and he or she can benefit from the expertise that we have to offer.”
Watch this episode of “Five Questions” to learn more about Mattacola’s efforts to improve the health and safety of jockeys and other riders. Mattacola also talked about his history with horses and what he enjoys most about being a health educator.