View Full Version : Exercise Rider

Dec. 2, 2009, 09:22 AM
I was just wondering what the optimal height/weight range is for a thoroughbred exercise rider. I'm 5'6'' and 132 pounds. If you have any other advice for a novice exercise rider that would be welcome too. I galloped horses for the track when I was younger, and am hoping to get back into it.

Dec. 2, 2009, 10:06 AM
Your weight would be acceptable for almost all the farms around here. I see alot of riders I know are close to 150.

Dec. 2, 2009, 10:41 AM
Honestly, height and weight doesn't matter. You are more than fine. My favorite exercise rider is a pretty big guy - but he is unflappable, a little crazy, and is strong enough to hold the tough ones. That's way more important to me than weight (and yeah, I'll use him to work them, too).

Dec. 2, 2009, 11:23 AM
My DH galloped, and worked horses, for 20 years at 160lbs. He had all the business he could stand.

Dec. 2, 2009, 11:48 AM
i'm 5'10" and weigh anywhere from 145 (in April, the beginning of the season up here - still fat from winter! lol) to 127 (in Nov, the end of the season). and never once has anyone said boo about my weight. i don't breeze that many, because i am on the larger side, and they prefer the little people for that, but i don't have a problem finding work.

Dec. 3, 2009, 03:20 PM
I'm also 5'10 and I'm between 118-125. I do a lot of breezing as well as babies, nice long legs help to stay on some of the spider monkeys. What I can't do as well is hold a wicked tough one on a day to day basis, I'm just not strong enough. We have an Irish guy who does the big bad boys instead. Oh, I did the happy dance when he started with us!!!

My advice is make sure you understand the instructions you are giving for each horse (some trainers can be vague), be prepared for a few weeks of sheer pain until you get fit, and be able to say, "I'm not comfortable riding this one." if you ever think you'll be in over your head. It's the safest thing for you, the horse, and the rest of the people on the track. Oh yeah, and ALWAYS pay attention. It amazes me how it seems so many people are so unaware that they are not the only people on the track.

I guess the absolute best advice is go out with someone who is willing to teach and help you. I rode out for 5 months with a jump jock and learned a some new and interesting things, it was really fun!

Dec. 3, 2009, 03:44 PM
As an aside .. for those who wonder what its like

Video: role and responsibilities of a licensed exercise rider (http://www.hulu.com/watch/4056/tvg-exercise-rider)


Video: interview of an exercise rider (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SadwWBDtv8A)

Dec. 6, 2009, 09:32 PM
I wanted to get back into exercise riding, not much demand in MI though, especially where I am. I'm 5'1", ~150 depending on time of year and how much work I got. I like the horses that breathe fire, I'm a tad touched in the head ;) The smallest I've been is 110, the largest is 180. I'm sitting at 140 at the end of a slow riding season.

From what I've experienced, its more about how you ride than what you weigh when it comes to exercising.

Dec. 7, 2009, 08:30 PM
As others have said, height/weight doesn't really matter, but most trainers will prefer to use smaller riders for workouts and maybe horses with a lot of soundness issues.

Also, recommend the advice Ishi gave you! Always listen to what other advanced riders have to say, you don't have to try it, but better to listen and take in all you can! The more respect you show them, the more likely they are you help you out when you need it or they can make your life hell on the track, such as spooking your horse on purpose, etc.

Dec. 7, 2009, 10:44 PM
Also, check this link out:


It shows from start to beginning. Kinda funny with some parts. Some get bucked off, lots of run aways, but it was pretty cool. These riders got an easy break being able to start in an enclosed area. I did it the hard way and went and learned straight on the track and a QH track for that, don't recomend it! LOL Start on a farm!

Dec. 10, 2009, 12:25 PM
I did it the hard way and went and learned straight on the track and a QH track for that, don't recomend it! LOL Start on a farm!

ditto! i did things back-assward too, galloped my first TB ever at Saratoga, with the big boys. Eek! LOL i had started more babies aimed for the track than i care to count, at various farms over the years, but galloping for real? saratoga's oklahoma track. nothing like jumping in feet first, right? lol

Dec. 10, 2009, 01:01 PM
Up to 165 to gallop
No more than 145-150 to breeze

Height means nothing.