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Skiijoring Setup

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    Skiijoring Setup

    For those who do skijoring, what is your tack setup?

    The Percheron mare I ride had shown great aptitude for it (I’ve walked/trotted on her while holding a lunge line attached to a weighted sled with no issue, other than my left arm wanted to fall off lol). Our dressage saddle has front d rings but no rear ones. My main concern is the tow line getting caught up in her legs when doing downwards transitions- fortunately she’s smart and tolerant and doesn’t freak out but I haven’t found (via google) a great setup for what I’d like to do.

    Thank you in advance!

    I don't understand your reference to your dressage saddle. Wouldn't you need a harness for this? I would never want to pull any weight with a saddle.



      We had a skijoring clinic put on by a club at our barn about 10 years ago. It was a great day! One of the teenagers was part-leasing my horse at the time and she rode and one of her friends skied. I can't remember my horse having a better time at anything before or since. We had the right kind of snow that winter. The DH was able to build a packed runway at the edge of the hayfield, very long and wide. There were a few obstacles such as a small jump and a series of rings you caught on one arm. One of the club members gave us a demo at the end and we were breathless. He was going so fast you could hardly see him and he picked up the rings in one sweep that took a couple of seconds.

      You shouldn't be thinking about using a dressage saddle. I have Circle Y flex-tree trail saddle and we could not use it because of that. We used one of the barn saddles. You don't use a harness. The club brought specially made ropes to fasten to the saddle at the front. A breast plate keeps it from pulling backwards. A saddle with a flexible tree can't take the strain.

      Speckles was 15 at the time. This was my screen at work until I retired in 2018.
      "With hardly any other living being can a human connect as closely over so many years as a rider can with her horse." Isabell Werth, Four Legs Move My Soul. 2019


        We did it for fun once. My mom has an old western saddle that she trail rides in when she's by herself. We also used a breastplate. Basically you need a set up that will distribute the weight and pull of the skier, while keeping the saddle situated on the horse.

        If the skier is just getting pulled in a straight line then it isn't too bad. But if they start doing any "turns" you can feel the horse getting pulled a little to each side.


          When I did it as a kid, before ever hearing the word "skijoring", I made a pulling collar out of one or two of my dad's old belts. I had one longe line going in a loop from the collar, and one going to the horse's bit. I held one line in each hand, one for steering and one for pulling (no rider on the horse). I would not really recommend this setup to anyone.


            Yes....Use a 5-point breastplate with the saddle, and attach your line to it.


              Originally posted by Mango20 View Post
              When I did it as a kid, before ever hearing the word "skijoring", I made a pulling collar out of one or two of my dad's old belts. I had one longe line going in a loop from the collar, and one going to the horse's bit. I held one line in each hand, one for steering and one for pulling (no rider on the horse). I would not really recommend this setup to anyone.
              It seems more common to have a person riding (and controlling) the horse as well as a person being 'towed'.
              No matter where you go, there you are


                Original Poster

                Thanks everyone! We have a western saddle that we might be able to use (will have to see if it fits her). That makes sense about the flexible tree- definitely didn’t think of that!


                  Here's the same horse, opposite end of the spectrum. Rider is a close friend of the BO, has a severe form of MS and has lost her mobility. He knows..............
                  "With hardly any other living being can a human connect as closely over so many years as a rider can with her horse." Isabell Werth, Four Legs Move My Soul. 2019