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Do you find it hard to shut up about horses? Do you love the smell of the barn and freshly cut hay? Are you eager to fly across every open field you see on the back of a horse? Then you’re a horse girl!
A horse girl is someone whose life revolves around horses. Horse girls can be of any age, although the term typically refers to young women aged 10 to 29.
The horse girl stereotype emerged in recent decades, and its interpretation has varied over the years. Currently, there are a few different opinions on the internet as to what a horse girl is.
The popular Urban Dictionary gives the following definition for horse girl:
“A girl who wears t-shirts with horses on them and tapered denim pants, has really long hair in which they braid and fasten with a scrunchie in the back of their head, will “gallop” on the track during gym class, is only friends with other girls who like horses and will look down on you because you are not a horse.”
The above entry from 2011 refers to the pre-teen horse-crazy girl everyone has come across at some point in their lives. However, equestrians of all ages and disciplines can be horse girls.
In this article, we explore what being a horse girl is all about!
The Roots of Today’s Horse Girl Culture
While horsey girls have always existed, they only emerged as a worldwide trend in the last few decades. This is mainly due to the increasing number of horse books and movies targeting this exact stereotype.
Today’s horse girls grew up on classic horse movies like Black Beauty, National Velvet, or The Horse Whisperer. The younger generation probably got hooked on animation films and series first like Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron or Horseland.
Interestingly, the books and movies horse girls love so much all share the same basic storyline. That is, the main character is a modest but passionate horse lover who comes across a spirited horse nobody can handle. As if by magic, this horse comes to trust and love the protagonist, and they go on to achieve inspiring feats together.
Most of these stories also feature a mean, rich girl who is extremely competitive. This character is usually abusive to her horses and uses them as a means of increasing her popularity. Sound familiar?
Another thing that unites all horse girls is resenting those who don’t consider riding an actual sport. They stand up passionately against laypeople who think horse riding is easy and will go out of their way to convince them otherwise.
Horses will also become a lifelong passion of many young girls, further shaping their horse girl identity.
Horse Girl Stereotypes
As mentioned above, there are various horse girl stereotypes that differ in age, social status, and personality traits.
While many of them are wealthy and ride horses, this isn’t always the case. However, there are things all horse girls have in common, the main one being their undying obsession with horses.
1. The Horse Crazy Kid
This stereotype typically refers to young school girls aged 8 to 14. These horse girls often have braces, collect model horses, and have their bedroom walls covered with horse posters.
Horse girls can list at least 50 horse breeds off the top of their heads and will tell you all about each one, whether you want it or not!
These kids are easy to spot from a long way, as they love to run around and jump like a horse. Unlike other girls, they don’t follow the latest fashion and often wear their hair tied back the way it fits under a riding helmet.
Such horse girls can also be socially awkward and introverted, except when the topic is about horses. They usually only make friends with other horse girls who are just as passionate about horses. Also, they frequently post photos of their horse on social media.
2. The Horse Whisperer Teen
This horse girl stereotype is most common among teens and young adults. The biggest dream of these girls is to one day develop a magical bond with a horse.
While many of these horsey girls will go on to learn natural horsemanship and liberty training, some will stick to the traditional way. What all of them will have, however, is a collection of pretty horse pictures with quotes to inspire them every day.
A classic one, for example, is the quote “When riding a horse, we borrow freedom” by Helen Thomson.
3. Women Who Own Horses
Horses are an expensive hobby, especially if you own one. This stereotype refers to those less fortunate horse owners who have to work hard in order to pay for their horses’ upkeep. They are known for spending all of their money on their horses instead of themselves.
These are just some of the horse girl stereotypes out there and the list goes on and on. With that being said, some people just call all female equestrians horse girls while others say there’s a difference. It’s all just a matter of personal interpretation and which part of the world you live in.
What Is the Difference Between a Horse Girl and Equestrian?
Although both terms can describe girls who ride horses, some equestrians have been trying to distance themselves from the horse girl stereotype. However, the difference is often difficult for non-horsepeople to see.
A horse girl is usually a goofy young girl who loves horses, whereas an equestrian is a stylish and competitive horse rider. Horse girls don’t really care about petty things like fashion and only ride horses for the fun of it.
In today’s society, most people who label themselves equestrians are wealthy English riders who aspire to compete at an elite level.
Equestrians care about the appearance of both themselves and their horses and like to have everything immaculate. These equestrians can sometimes come across as arrogant to horse girls and more modest riders.
The Meaning Behind Horse Girl Memes
Horse girl memes can be split into two types: those that make fun of horsey girls and those that lift them up. Let’s be honest, horse people are a special breed, and we can’t fault the rest of society for pointing that out every now and again.
While this may seem like bullying to some horse girls, most of these memes are just innocent jokes.
The other type of memes targeting this stereotype are made by horse girls for horse girls. They often highlight their strength, bravery, wild spirit, and the fact that horse girls deal with thousand-pound animals on a daily basis. There’re also many hilarious memes about dating a horse girl.
Check out our fun article 10 Things to Expect When Dating a Horse Girl
What It Means to Have “Horse Girl Energy”
Alongside the horse girl stereotype, the term “horse girl energy” also emerged on the internet in recent years. Different websites have different takes on what it means to have horse girl energy, so let’s take a closer look.
On the one hand, many people believe you don’t have to necessarily ride or own a horse to have horse girl energy. Fangirlsih gives the following explanation for the term:
“’Horse girl energy’ has also emerged as a way to describe someone who’s a bit of an outcast and is really into some niche interest. It’s kind of hard to explain, but ‘horse girl energy’ definitely transcends horse girls themselves.”
This interpretation is based on how society sees horse girls in general. To most people, horse girls seem a bit eccentric and introverted; they mostly stick to their own world. Popbuzz regards celebrities like Taylor Swift, Emma Watson, or the character “Polly” in Riverdale as the queens of horse girl energy.
Jaylen Barron from Free Rein has “horse girl energy”
In her interview with American Teen, Barron talks about what she thinks horse girl energy means.
“Horse girl energy is being confident, calm, and collected. ‘Confident’, so when you ride, your horse knows you’re in charge. ‘Calm’ because they can feel your energy and whether you’re nervous, so you have to be in tune with your emotions and your nerves. And ‘collected’ meaning you’ve got everything together.”
In Her Campus, she shared “I think I have horse girl energy, because horsey girls are strong, they’re athletic, and they’re driven.” She went on to say how horse girls share an amazing connection with their horses and that she feels the same way about her dogs.
In her opinion, everyone who is strong, independent, and passionate about something has horse girl energy.