In Oxforshire, England, a 49-year old horse trainer named Heather Main says that one of the keys to training winning racehorses is to sing opera songs to them. Main is an experienced opera singer and uses her experience to serenade each of the horses she trains for races. Main says that the singing helps the horses relax and also is a form of entertainment for the animals.
“My job is to train winners,” said Main “To get winners, I have to do everything I can, not just the right feed and the right exercise. I see it as part of their training. Human athletes will take time to relax and listen to music, these horses are athletes too. Racing is hard work, it uses a lot of adrenaline and they need time to unwind.” Main says that the horses’ favorite composer has been Mozart.
“The horses all prick up their ears,” she said. “They come to their doors and bob their heads and if some of them are lying down they will get up to see what’s going on.” So far the tactic has been working wonders. Four of the horses she has trained won first place in just a month. The fifth horse she trained came in second place.
Main first trained to be an opera singer when she was young, but she was always interested in racing horses. She eventually gave up singing to become a jockey. After her career as a jockey, she found out that she could combine her two passions and opened up a horse training facility with her husband, a veterinarian.