Written by Joscelyn Richards.
Let’s face it: A cell phone plays a huge role in an equestrian’s daily life. I am constantly trying out and using different apps for an array of tasks. Through trial and error I have picked out my top five free non-social media apps an equestrian must have on their phone. (Note: The following apps are available on the App Store for Apple products and may not be available for non-Apple products)
ps. Click the links to download each app!
SoundCloud: This free music app allows users to create and customize their own play lists. I have created multiple play lists, each for a different activity-riding, grooming or my drives up to Wellington. Unlike Pandora or Spotify, this app plays very few commercials. I usually hear one commercial per every hour of listening time. Soundcloud offers users a variety of music to add to their music. Simply search the song you want on your playlist on Soundcloud and click “Add to Playlist.” The app is super easy to use and takes up very little storage on your phone.
SmartBlanket: This free app was designed by and is ran by the popular equestrian company SmartPak. SmartBlanket is a blanketing app designed to help equestrians figure out which blanket to use on their horse(s) for the day and night. I downloaded this app back when it first came out in October of 2014 and have been a huge fan of it since. I have lived in Florida my whole life and have limited experience when it comes to deciding which blankets to use on horses when it gets cold. Florida’s “winter” usually lasts about 2-3 months with temperatures occasionally dropping to below 40°. SmartBlanket provides customized recommendations of what blanket to use on your horse(s) based on it’s coat length, weight, height and age. This app also provides descriptions of the blankets it suggests and how to measure what size blanket your horse would be. For another review of this app from someone living in the northeast, click here.
Starbucks: I finally downloaded this app a couple months ago after hearing great reviews about it from others. This free app is great for frequent Starbucks drinkers! What I love about this app is that it allows you to pay from your phone and earn stars that help you earn rewards and freebies. There are 3 different levels: Welcome, Green, and Gold. Each level has its own different rewards and specials. Starbucks also just introduced a new feature to its app called Mobile Order & Pay. This feature allows you to order and pay from your phone and when you arrive to the Starbucks to pick your drink up, it will be ready for you to grab it and go. I use this feature all the time, especially when I’m in a rush, and I have never had any problems with it.
MyFitnessPal: I originally downloaded this app as part of a nutrition project I had to do in one of my Sports Medicine classes. I’ve been a huge fan of it since then. In addition to horseback riding, I’m also an avid runner. This free app allows users to track and calculate how many calories they consume and burn. Simply add the food you consumed into your food diary, and it will keep track of your daily intake. This app also has a barcode scanner which automatically fills in the nutrition for whatever food you scan into your food diary. What I love about this app is that it offers horseback riding (walking, trotting, cantering, etc.) as one of the many exercises you can add to your daily routine. Users can also pick if they want to lose weight, maintain their current weight, or gain weight, and the app will calculate how many calories you should eat per day in order to achieve your goal. My motto in life is “Eat good, feel good.”
Shazam: The Shazam app has been around for years and was one of the first apps I downloaded onto my phone. This free app identifies songs for users based off a couple lines from the song. Users simply tap the Shazam button, and the app does the rest! The whole process takes about 30 seconds and gives users the name of the song and the artist. I use this app all the time, especially during Saturday Night Lights in Wellington when an array of songs are being played during the Grand Prix. Instead of sitting there wondering what the name of the song is I simply use the Shazam app, and it tells me what song it is. The app will also keep a cumulative list of all the songs users have ever “shazamed” so users can go back at a later time to see all the songs.