US dressage rider Silva Martin is in hospital after an accident in which her horse tripped and fell on her on Thursday.
The accident happened at the Wellington, Florida, training base of Martin and her husband, eventer Boyd Martin. Silva, 34, was wearing a helmet at the time but was knocked unconscious and reportedly suffered a seizure. She was flown by helicopter to Delray Medical Center. According to Eventing Nation, Boyd she had been drifting in and out of consciousness and is having trouble moving her left arm and leg.
There is swelling and bleeding in her brain, but Boyd said doctors are optimistic that the injury is a severe concussion, rather than a more serious head injury.
He told The Chronicle of the Horse: “She was on a horse who sort of half-tripped, and as it tripped, she bumped her head on the neck and then got sort of knocked out as she fell.
“They said for sure if she wasn’t wearing her helmet, she’d be cactus,” he told the Chronicle. “She comes from a culture in Germany where you don’t wear a helmet every day, but for the last couple of years she’s been very diligent about it.
“Personally, I feel pretty optimistic about the situation,” he said. “She’s got the German fighting resilience. Right now it’s just a lot of sleeping in waiting rooms and praying that she comes to life again.”