A retrospective chart review was conducted to define the demographic and injury patterns of patients presenting to the emergency department (ED). The setting is a rural/small urban tertiary care center with approximately 40,000 visits per year. All patients presenting to the ED from January 1986 through December 1990 with equestrian-related injuries were enrolled in the study. Measurements included age, sex, mechanism of injury, injury or injuries diagnosed, admission to the hospital, morbidity, and mortality. A total of 142 patients met the inclusion criteria. The majority of injuries occurred when the patient fell from a horse. There were also a large number of injuries associated with handling the horse. Most injuries were minor, but 15% required hospital admission. There were no deaths. In conclusion, equestrian activities are associated with a risk of serious injury to both riders and handlers of horses. Education of both the public and primary care physicians should focus on injury prevention.