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Riding to the Beat: The Ultimate Horse Riding Playlist

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I’m in a family of horse and music lovers. We like hanging out at the barn, riding, and working with our horses. One thing that makes it even more enjoyable is listening to music while we ride. I’ve found that music can significantly affect how we ride.

An upbeat and energetic music playlist is great for dressage, jumping, and barrel racing. It helps keep you focused and motivated while you’re doing these activities. When I go out for trail rides, I like to listen to calm and soothing music.

When choosing music, it’s important to think about what type of riding you’re doing. My oldest daughter likes high-energy songs before entering the arena for a barrel race. My son likes rock music for most activities, and my youngest daughter like to ride listening to western and pop music.

So next time you’re out riding, don’t be afraid to add some music to your ride. It can make it even more enjoyable! In this article, I’ll talk about how music and horseback riding go together and give you some ideas for making the perfect playlist for horseback riding.

The Science behind Music and Horse Riding

Listening to music triggers a release of feel-good chemicals in the brain, such as dopamine and serotonin. This can help to reduce stress and improve our mood. Research studies have also shown that music can positively affect our physical performance, such as increasing endurance and reducing fatigue.

Picture of a barrel racer.

Creating the Perfect Playlist

When creating a playlist for horse riding, there are a few things to remember. First, consider the type of riding you will be doing and choose appropriate music for that activity. Second, don’t blast the music too loud; you need to hear things around you.

This is why I like to ride with bone-conduction headphones. Traditional in-ear or over-ear headphones can block out important sounds, like traffic or other riders, which can be dangerous.

Bone conduction earphones allow the rider to hear both the music and their surroundings, making it safer to ride while still enjoying music.

Picture of a young woman riding a horse.

10 Songs about horses

  • Beer For My Horses – Toby Keith & Willie Nelson
  • Should’ve Been A Cowboy – Toby Keith
  • White Horse – Taylor Swift
  • Good Day to Ride – George Canyon
  • Wild Horses – The Rolling Stones
  • Another Horsedreamer’s Blues – Counting Crows
  • All The Pretty Little Ponies – Kenny Loggins
  • Ghost Riders In The Sky – Johnny Cash
  • Save A Horse (Ride A Cowboy) – Big & Rich
  • Pullin’ Back The Reins – k.d.lang & The Reclines
Picture of a boy riding his horse and listening to music on his playlist.

10 Pop songs to listen to when horse riding

  • “Successful,” by Ariana Grande
  • “Brutal,” by Olivia Rodrigo
  • “No Control,” by One Direction
  • “Tipsy,” by Chloe x Halle
  • “Hot Girl Bummer,” by Blackbear
  • “All Night,” by Icona Pop
  • “Need to Know” by Doja Cat
  • “Your Love Is My Drug,” by Kesha
  • “Intentions,” by Justin Bieber feat. Quavo
  • “E.T.,” by Katy Perry feat. Kanye West

10 Classic Rock Songs for horse riding

  • “Born to Run“—Bruce Springsteen
  • “I Can See for Miles”—Styx
  • “Sweet Emotion”—Aerosmith
  • “Carry on Wayward Son”—Kansas
  • “Hungry Like the Wolf”—Duran Duran
  • “I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles)“—The Proclaimers
  • “Long Train Runnin’”—The Doobie Brothers
  • “Burnin’ for You”—Blue Öyster Cult
  • “Ramble On”—Led Zepplin
  • “Rock You Like a Hurricane”—Scorpions
Picture of a family on a trail ride.

10 Country western songs to add to your playlist

  • “Homemade” – Jake Owen
  • “We Back” – Jason Aldeen
  • “This Bar” – Morgan Wallen
  • “Here and Now” – Kenny Chesney
  • “One Man Band” – Old Dominion
  • “Getting Good” – Lauren Alaina
  • “I Hope You’re Happy Now” – Carly Pearce, Lee Brice
  • “Homesick” – Kane Brown
  • “More Hearts than Mine” – Ingred Andress
  • “Slow Dancing in a Parking Lot” – Jordan Davis
  • “Chasin’ You” – Morgan Wallen

10 good songs to listen to when horse riding

  • “Bulletproof” – La Roux 
  • “Edge of Glory” – Lady Gaga 
  • Bad Romance” – Lady Gaga
  • “Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You)” – Kelly Clarkson 
  • “My Life Would Suck Without You” – Kelly Clarkson
  • “Jai Ho” – A. R. Rahman & Pussycat Dolls (from Slumdog Millionaire)
  • “Roar” – Katy Perry
  • “Shake It” – Metro Station
  • “Girlfriend” – Avril Lavigne 
  • “Club Can’t Handle Me” – Flo Rida
Picture of three horseback ridiers.

Choosing Music

When it comes to choosing songs for your horse riding playlist, the possibilities are endless. Some popular songs that are well-suited for horse riding include: “Eye of the Tiger” by Survivor, “Stronger” by Kelly Clarkson, “Don’t Stop Believin'” by Journey, and “I Will Survive” by Gloria Gaynor.

In addition, certain genres of music are well-suited for horse riding. Classical music, for example, is known to be calming and soothing, making it great for trail riding. Country music, on the other hand, is often upbeat and energetic, making it perfect for dressage and jumping.

There are also pre-made playlists on streaming services such as Spotify and YouTube specifically designed for horse riding.


Incorporating music into your horse riding routine can positively affect both the rider and the horse. By choosing the right type of music and creating a playlist that suits your individual needs and preferences, you can take your riding experience to the next level. So next time you’re out on the trail or in the arena, don’t be afraid to ride to the beat!


What songs do horses like?

Like all animals, horses have unique preferences, so what songs they like varies. However, research suggests that horses tend to respond well to calming, soothing music with a slow tempo and low-frequency tones. Some examples of music that have been used to calm horses include classical music, jazz, and nature sounds.

What smells do horses love?

Horses have a keen sense of smell and can be attracted to certain scents. Some scents that horses love include freshly cut grass, herbs, flowers, apples, vanilla, and eucalyptus.