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Riding Western... is not a matter of ????

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  • Original Poster

    Originally posted by Fillabeana View Post
    Sorry, 7HL. You're going to have a discussion over whether a person should ride in jeans here, too.

    I can only wear jeans if my skin has toughened up from riding 3 or 4 hours every day. I almost exclusively wear breeches, and if it isn't hot I wear chinks over them.
    Never said you had to ride in anything. Don't get your point.

    What I did post was a link to a thread where some were saying jeans are a negative, because it would scuff their delicate english saddle.

    Wear what you please.

    Never have any problems wearing Wranglers. Didn't have to toughen up anything.

    Another 'english vs western' difference

    Never said western vs english. Or what are the differences. I don't care.
    The ultimate goal of farming is not the growing of crops, but the cultivation and perfection of human beings.


    • #42
      AliCat --
      "I ride hunters (western when I ride the retired guy and feel like just relaxing), and am serious about my training. I dont think it necessarily is a discipline thing, as much as a choice."


      A hunter or a dressage horse doesn't HAVE to have silence or pristine conditions. If the rider/owner/trainer CHOOSES to create the bubble, then one or all of them must deal with the consequences when the bubble bursts and the real world enters.

      It has always amused me that dressage horses, which are supposed to be the epitome of focused on rider's aides, are so easily distracted by something that happens 50' away. REALLY????

      Equine Photography in the Northeast


      • #43
        Originally posted by mp View Post
        Unless you're working cattle for a living with your horse, "western" riding is about your preferences for accoutrements. Nothing more.
        I'd have to mostly agree with this.

        In addition to trails (of course), I've done contesting, western pleasure, polo, and now foxhunting and starting to dabble in eventing. The tack changes and with it the aids change slightly, terminology varies, but the basics are still the same.

        IME, there is a greater divide between 'arena' disciplines and those who mainly work outside it than between groups as defined by tack. A couple of the disciplines I mentioned can have a pretty darn 'western' attitude--actually a lot truer to both the stereotypes and actual cowboy traditions than a bunch of the poseurs out there in stock saddles...


        • #44
          If you really want to confuse things, try endurance riding. I've always been a "hybrid" who rides in whatever worked/whatever I could afford. I'm that weird H/J, dressage rider who rides in jeans and 1/2 chaps and hangs out with barrel racers. My tack room is in a constant identity crisis. And then I discovered endurance.....where it's perfectly acceptable to ride your massive QH in a helmet, jeans, 1/2 chaps, and western spurs, in a barrel or dressage saddle, depending on how froggy he's feeling that day. It's a whole world of people who ride in whatever works! Hybrid Rider fits in at last!
          I would say I am an english rider with a western soul. I still fantasize about having that barrel horse one day.
          That said, a few years ago I was running errands, wearing jeans, cowboy boots/western spurs, ball cap, and a down vest with a huge ranch brand ebroidered across the back.(cold weather/broncy horse day) A very chatty man approached me and asked, "Do you ride warmbloods?" And I thought I was confused....


          • #45
            I prefer Western. It's awful hard to rope out of an English saddle.
            Life is short. Ride your best horse first.


            • #46
              [QUOTE=Bluey;6522080]After having taught lessons for many years I can say that it is much easier to go from a good rider on any discipline, knowledgeable of the technical aspects of riding, not the more seat of the pants rider, than a get on and ride type rider, that has to learn an independent seat and some polite communication with the horse.[/QUOTE

              I am this rider. After years of 'riding' and carriage driving I decided to show western pleasure. I bought a beautifully trained Morgan who already had a nice show record with his owner/amateur trainer. So...

              I bought the saddle and got on thinking "western is easy, just sit there and they do all the work". HA! ! I had no knowledge of the technical aspects of riding, no independent seat, didn't even know if I was sitting up straight or not (I wasn't). I did have polite communication with the horse, if you could call it that. I was so afraid of too much contact that I basically had none...more than confusing to the poor guy. 4 years later, I am just now getting the hang of it. I supposed it doesn't help that I started at age 61 and hadn't really ridden any horse in decades.

              As far as attitude, I'm kind of a type AA personality. I really should be doing cross country. I have a hard time toning myself down for western. But I do love the bling, the colorful outfits and the sense of accomplishment. My horse is beautiful, I'm always proud of him at the shows.

              I love my kerrits breeches, paddock boots and blunt spurs. But I'm thinking about some jingle-jangle-jingle spurs for next year.
              Ride like you mean it.


              • #47
                I've rode a Welsh X pony(?) and Spotted Draft in WP classes, so it's not just about QH.

                IMHO, I find western riders more laid back than English riders (I ride both) even though I have a few friends who ride strictly English.

                I ride with a helmet no matter what tack I have on, even bareback.

                As far as tack, my guy prefers a snaffle over his curb bit. He responds a lot better, bends, etc.
                We could all take a lesson from crayons some are sharp, some are beautiful, some have weird names, and all are different colors, but they still learn to live in the same box. Unknown.


                • #48
                  Originally posted by BensMama View Post
                  I prefer Western. It's awful hard to rope out of an English saddle.
                  True, but not impossible, just pick something light that you don't need to dally! Admittedly trickier when you have to 'haul' something heavy on a rope,as I've had to do a couple of times on competitive trail rides (but I got it done).

                  I ride both horses 'both ways' and don't fuss much over what clothing I wear when riding day in and day out. Obviously wear the right clothing when, say, foxhunting or working cattle. There are good practical reasons for the way riding clothes have evolved both English and Western.


                  • #49
                    You can rope with an English saddle.
                    You have to follow/drive whatever you caught until you get to something you can tie to, a bigger mesquite, post, trailer or bumper.

                    Just don't try it with a pink eye blind calf.


                    • #50
                      Originally posted by Fillabeana View Post
                      Some of the prettiest dressage I've ever seen was 'live' in front of me, ridden by Buck Brannaman on his bridle horse. Medium trot to collected canter to medium canter, and two tempi changes. You never saw an aid, it was all super subtle, and the horse's tail was completely quiet and the horse had a lovely, happy face as well as lovely, expressive gaits.
                      Ray Hunt, Tom Dorrance and the like understood HORSES and how they used their bodies, how to connect with their minds, and how to get a horse to do anything athletic, happily.
                      THIS. THIS. THIS.

                      Good riding and classical horsemanship are just that... no matter the tack.
                      Dreaming in Color


                      • #51
                        I have the Buck dvd and that bit with him in the field working his horse stays with me much more so than a lot of the world class dressage horses - it was just a beautiful piece of filming a pair who were so in tune with each other.

                        The other thing that stayed with me was the view of his tack in his horse trailer - now Buck is one big tackaholic and loves good stuff...!
                        Proud member of People Who Hate to Kill Wildlife clique


                        • #52
                          I have the Buck dvd and that bit with him in the field working his horse stays with me
                          Oh, me too.
                          When I went to my first clinic in 2010, I was moved to tears watching. I saw in front of me, Buck on the horse he's riding in the DVD, doing the same moves. I just had NEVER seen anything like it- the softness, willingness, togetherness, invisibility of aids, complete lack of tail-swatting or resentment on the horse's part...wow.
                          And after Buck handles a horse (even if he has to get very firm), every horse I've seen pretty much just wants to be with him, follow him around, afterwards. It just about broke my heart when Buck handed my (now calm, quiet and happy) horse back to me, and my horse wanted to stay with Buck. Not because 'oh, my horse doesn't love me', but I knew that I couldn't provide something for my horse, that he so desperately needed. It's better now, but it took two years to get it to work.

                          You can rope with an English saddle.
                          Just don't try it with a pink eye blind calf
                          Oh my!
                          It's pretty hard to do much of anything with a scared, hurting pinkeye blind calf.

                          Oh, and I am VERY excited that the producers of the Buck movie have put out 7 dvds of 'Buck clinic' footage for horsepeople's education:
                          I've ordered my copy and can't wait until it comes, about a week and change before it gets here!


                          • #53
                            Originally posted by Fillabeana View Post
                            And after Buck handles a horse (even if he has to get very firm), every horse I've seen pretty much just wants to be with him, follow him around, afterwards. It just about broke my heart when Buck handed my (now calm, quiet and happy) horse back to me, and my horse wanted to stay with Buck. Not because 'oh, my horse doesn't love me', but I knew that I couldn't provide something for my horse, that he so desperately needed. It's better now, but it took two years to get it to work.
                            Buck didn't even have to take complete control of my horse for her to be instantly smitten.

                            After working with me briefly on her mouth and contact, he looked up at me in the saddle and said, "Your horse is actually a very sensitive mare. I like her. I like the sensitive ones." Then he turned to walk away and she couldn't take her eyes off him... for at least 2 minutes she watched him walk around the arena while he talked about her and then he had to kind of hide behind another horse and rider before she finally turned her head away. The crowd, of course, laughed.

                            I saw some seriously dramatic changes in a couple of the clinic horses in just a few days. It was eye opening.
                            Dreaming in Color


                            • #54
                              I ride english because I prefer the contact I get with an English Saddle (plus the light weight and simplicity of girth and stirrup adjustment). I ride in jeans when I ride bareback but prefer breeches when in the saddle. I almost always wear a helmet (in need my brain to remain in good working order). I also like to jump and do eventing for which a western saddle is not going to be ideal. I compete my horse in trail classes (the standard western ones- so she opens a gate, walks over bridge, goes through poles, backs through L, side passes etc). She has been through a "spook" clinic and dragged a bag of cans, walked over a "tippy bridge," let me carry a huge pool toy, pop balloons from her back etc etc. She has been team sorting- in english tack- and been to Utah to participate in the annual buffalo round up on antelope island. She was one of the horses that would gallop along the back of the herd to get them moving (and get the hell out of dodge if a buffalo wanted to chase us). She has been horse camping, on rocky trails in the sierras, and through water, and in the ocean up to her belly and then some. I am very happy to have a horse that has been exposed to this. I think it makes her a happier girl and me a happier rider. And by the way she is an OTTB. I have to say ya'll western folk, if you've never jumped a cross country course you should give it a try HUGE adrenalin rush. And I'd like to try reining and gymkhana events some day too. Riding is riding. Some folks are bold (and so are their horses) and some folks are timid (and so are their horses). We horse lovers have much more in common then not.


                              • #55
                                i still wear a helmet for everything i only ride western but i have a crazy 3 yr old arab so that might explain a little...


                                • #56
                                  Coming back to say I'm learning more and more that it's attitude more than tack. I don't ride in a Western saddle -they are heavy and bulky and I don't know how to use my leg with my English aids. However, I have found refuge for my mind with my Western riding folks. For example, I like dressage, and may compete in dressage if I can ever find a saddle I can afford that can fit Fella, however conversations about turnout, button braids, etc. make me feel like a foreigner. I hear these conversations and I ask myself what the heck I'm doing. I am not turned on by turnout.

                                  I find myself contemplating leaving the Western fenders on my endurance type treeless saddle, and leaving the wide track eventer stirrups on too. I find it less and less necessary to wear breeches and tall boots to ride. In fact I plan on wearing my Carhartts if it's cold on Friday. I found a pair of full seat riding jeans on Long Riders http://www.ridingwarehouse.com/Delux...ge-DTRJFS.html

                                  My horse often rides in a ring full of riders and gets tacked up at a hitching post mashed in with many other horses.

                                  My attitudes have changed from;
                                  I am afraid to fall -to- meh; it's not so far down.
                                  He might spook so don't do that -to -meh; he'll get over it.

                                  He has to go everywhere and do everything.

                                  Speaking in generalizations I think my attitude has become Western/utilitarian.

                                  He is total garbage! Quick! Hide him on my trailer (Petstorejunkie).


                                  • #57
                                    count me in the camp that thinks a good horseman/woman is a good horseperson, regardless of the discipline. The man who broke and trained one of my horses is very much like Buck, and watching him work with the horse was just amazing (and he rode nothing but western, an old rancher). A woman who works with me in Vermont is mostly a dressage rider, yet she has really helped me work with my horse to make him a better/safer trail horse.

                                    My horses sure don't care if the rider is wearing a ball cap, a stetson or a helmet, nor do they care if someone is wearing jeans, britches or a breechcloth. Of course there are differences both between disciplines and also among all the subdisciplines, but at the end of the day, good skills are still good skills.


                                    • #58
                                      I get people out here all the time that think that riding western is easier than riding english because there is "something to hold onto". They quickly learn that it isn't about what saddle you ride in, but rather how you a ride. a good rider can do just about everything in either saddle.
                                      Teaching Horseback Riding Lessons: A Practical Training Manual for Instructors

                                      Stop Wasting Hay and Extend Consumption Time With Round Bale Hay Nets!!


                                      • #59
                                        But I can't discount or undervalue how moving to a Western barn improved my English riding because my expectations of my horse and their expectations of me (like -big whoop you fell, get back on).

                                        He is total garbage! Quick! Hide him on my trailer (Petstorejunkie).