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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!

  • #2
    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.

    Rebecca

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    • #3
      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

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      • #4
        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.

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        • #5
          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.

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          • #6
            Yes....Use a 5-point breastplate with the saddle, and attach your line to it.

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            • #7
              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

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              • Original Poster

                #8
                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!

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                • #9
                  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

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