• Welcome to the Chronicle Forums.
    Please complete your profile. The forums and the rest of www.chronofhorse.com has single sign-in, so your log in information for one will automatically work for the other. Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here are the views of the individual and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of The Chronicle of the Horse.

Announcement

Collapse

Forum rules and no-advertising policy

As a participant on this forum, it is your responsibility to know and follow our rules. Please read this message in its entirety.

Board Rules

1. You’re responsible for what you say.
As outlined in Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, The Chronicle of the Horse and its affiliates, as well Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd., the developers of vBulletin, are not legally responsible for statements made in the forums.

This is a public forum viewed by a wide spectrum of people, so please be mindful of what you say and who might be reading it—details of personal disputes are likely better handled privately. While posters are legally responsible for their statements, the moderators may in their discretion remove or edit posts that violate these rules. Users have the ability to modify or delete their own messages after posting, but administrators generally will not delete posts, threads or accounts upon request.

Outright inflammatory, vulgar, harassing, malicious or otherwise inappropriate statements and criminal charges unsubstantiated by a reputable news source or legal documentation will not be tolerated and will be dealt with at the discretion of the moderators.

2. Conversations in horse-related forums should be horse-related.
The forums are a wonderful source of information and support for members of the horse community. While it’s understandably tempting to share information or search for input on other topics upon which members might have a similar level of knowledge, members must maintain the focus on horses.

3. Keep conversations productive, on topic and civil.
Discussion and disagreement are inevitable and encouraged; personal insults, diatribes and sniping comments are unproductive and unacceptable. Whether a subject is light-hearted or serious, keep posts focused on the current topic and of general interest to other participants of that thread. Utilize the private message feature or personal email where appropriate to address side topics or personal issues not related to the topic at large.

4. No advertising in the discussion forums.
Posts in the discussion forums directly or indirectly advertising horses, jobs, items or services for sale or wanted will be removed at the discretion of the moderators. Use of the private messaging feature or email addresses obtained through users’ profiles for unsolicited advertising is not permitted.

Company representatives may participate in discussions and answer questions about their products or services, or suggest their products on recent threads if they fulfill the criteria of a query. False "testimonials" provided by company affiliates posing as general consumers are not appropriate, and self-promotion of sales, ad campaigns, etc. through the discussion forums is not allowed.

Paid advertising is available on our classifieds site and through the purchase of banner ads. The tightly monitored Giveaways forum permits free listings of genuinely free horses and items available or wanted (on a limited basis). Items offered for trade are not allowed.

Advertising Policy Specifics
When in doubt of whether something you want to post constitutes advertising, please contact a moderator privately in advance for further clarification. Refer to the following points for general guidelines:

Horses – Only general discussion about the buying, leasing, selling and pricing of horses is permitted. If the post contains, or links to, the type of specific information typically found in a sales or wanted ad, and it’s related to a horse for sale, regardless of who’s selling it, it doesn’t belong in the discussion forums.

Stallions – Board members may ask for suggestions on breeding stallion recommendations. Stallion owners may reply to such queries by suggesting their own stallions, only if their horse fits the specific criteria of the original poster. Excessive promotion of a stallion by its owner or related parties is not permitted and will be addressed at the discretion of the moderators.

Services – Members may use the forums to ask for general recommendations of trainers, barns, shippers, farriers, etc., and other members may answer those requests by suggesting themselves or their company, if their services fulfill the specific criteria of the original post. Members may not solicit other members for business if it is not in response to a direct, genuine query.

Products – While members may ask for general opinions and suggestions on equipment, trailers, trucks, etc., they may not list the specific attributes for which they are in the market, as such posts serve as wanted ads.

Event Announcements – Members may post one notification of an upcoming event that may be of interest to fellow members, if the original poster does not benefit financially from the event. Such threads may not be “bumped” excessively. Premium members may post their own notices in the Event Announcements forum.

Charities/Rescues – Announcements for charitable or fundraising events can only be made for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organizations. Special exceptions may be made, at the moderators’ discretion and direction, for board-related events or fundraising activities in extraordinary circumstances.

Occasional posts regarding horses available for adoption through IRS-registered horse rescue or placement programs are permitted in the appropriate forums, but these threads may be limited at the discretion of the moderators. Individuals may not advertise or make announcements for horses in need of rescue, placement or adoption unless the horse is available through a recognized rescue or placement agency or government-run entity or the thread fits the criteria for and is located in the Giveaways forum.

5. Do not post copyrighted photographs unless you have purchased that photo and have permission to do so.

6. Respect other members.
As members are often passionate about their beliefs and intentions can easily be misinterpreted in this type of environment, try to explore or resolve the inevitable disagreements that arise in the course of threads calmly and rationally.

If you see a post that you feel violates the rules of the board, please click the “alert” button (exclamation point inside of a triangle) in the bottom left corner of the post, which will alert ONLY the moderators to the post in question. They will then take whatever action, or no action, as deemed appropriate for the situation at their discretion. Do not air grievances regarding other posters or the moderators in the discussion forums.

Please be advised that adding another user to your “Ignore” list via your User Control Panel can be a useful tactic, which blocks posts and private messages by members whose commentary you’d rather avoid reading.

7. We have the right to reproduce statements made in the forums.
The Chronicle of the Horse may copy, quote, link to or otherwise reproduce posts, or portions of posts, in print or online for advertising or editorial purposes, if attributed to their original authors, and by posting in this forum, you hereby grant to The Chronicle of the Horse a perpetual, non-exclusive license under copyright and other rights, to do so.

8. We reserve the right to enforce and amend the rules.
The moderators may delete, edit, move or close any post or thread at any time, or refrain from doing any of the foregoing, in their discretion, and may suspend or revoke a user’s membership privileges at any time to maintain adherence to the rules and the general spirit of the forum. These rules may be amended at any time to address the current needs of the board.

Please see our full Terms of Service and Privacy Policy for more information.

Thanks for being a part of the COTH forums!

(Revised 1/26/16)
See more
See less

I am comfortable bareback

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • I am comfortable bareback

    I always rode English. Now I have a quarter horse. I got a western saddle. It is comfortable except for the stirrups. They are stiff.

    I started riding bareback indoors for my seat. I have a very big horse. When I sit on him bareback I am right behind his withers. I wrap my legs around his barrel. Leg aids are easy. I feel very safe. I can do spins without moving.

    I put the saddle on him yesterday. Because he has big shoulders I put the saddle behind the blades. It sits there naturally. I think it is too far back from center. I am sitting back about 6 inches from where I sit bareback. I can not wrap my legs around him. Leg aids are harder. I do not feel as secure. I am not sitting around him. I am sitting on him.

    I told everyone I do not know western saddles. English saddles are thin and close to the horse. Is this the way western saddles feel? Am I putting the saddle too far back?

  • #2
    To address the stirrup issue...are they turned? Unless they're factory turned or wrapped, the fenders will force the stirrups parallel with the horse's side. As you figured out, this is murder on your legs.

    Here's an article on how to fix that.

    You fit a Western saddle similarly to an English saddle so there's enough room for the shoulder blade, ie, two or three fingers width of clearance between the point of the tree and the shoulder blade when the arm is extended.


    Here's a pretty good video about that.


    ETA: See if you can't try more saddles on him, especially saddle types. Depending on the rigging on the fenders, some saddles put you into a chair seat or pitch you one way or the other. Nobody says you HAVE to ride with a saddle either. If you like riding bareback, more power to you!

    Comment


    • #3
      First to consider is that saddles distribute a rider's weight over a much larger surface than two seat bones do, making a rider on it's back much more comfortable for horses.

      You can imagine a back pack smoothly laying along your back and one with something in it that is poking you somewhere.

      Some very sensitive horses are right down uneasy with a bareback rider because of that poking in one spot for longer than a bit and may even be sore the next day.
      That is why vaulting pads generally are thick pads, to protect the horse's backs from the poking riding without a saddle is.

      Remember that saddles are also traditionally used to increase security of the riders when the horses are doing something more athletic than just getting from point A to B.
      Saddles are a good compromise between being one with a horse and a more secure seat.

      Once stirrups were added to saddles, what riders could do increased exponentially with the lateral movement security that provided.

      Bareback riding is great for riders to learn to balance better, but it is not without concerns that go along with it.
      It should be done with care for the horse's back, just as riding with any pad or saddle should be.

      Comment


      • #4
        I had a similar experience as you once. I had started riding early in my life english. Came to own a horse late in my life and started riding western. My first western saddle was an old schooling saddle that was perfectly broken in. I upgraded to a wintec and the fenders were soft so again it felt comfortable. Then upgraded to a semi custom, and the fenders were so hard, despite training them, I started riding bareback and discovered I liked it better for all the reasons you mention.

        I rode bareback almost exclusively for 3 years, trails, jumping, everything, 6 days a week. Only time I used a saddle was for competition like team penning or pole bending. My horse was very fit at the time and had a double back, I was never on his spine and he never suffered any issues. He was built to be ridden bareback.

        I had a very hard time riding with stirrups for a long while after, even in an english saddle. When I started riding dressage, I took the stirrups off my saddles. My lovely semi custom western saddle collected dust.

        I had to force myself to learn to ride with stirrups again. I thought it was because I was free bareback and saddles were so restricting, but in reality I discovered that it was because I had a hard time being able to relax my leg and still use it effectively. I discovered that leg cues were so much easier bareback because if you tensed your leg or picked up your heel there was no repercussion, like your stirrup sliding home. While I developed great balance, and forever broke the habit of looking down, my legs became weaker and weaker and sloppy over time. Bad habits that still haunt me a decade later.

        I love the long long time I spent bareback, I wouldn't trade it for anything. I loved the freedom, loved not having to tack up, just find a step and hop on. Even loved how all my jeans developed permanent 'bare back butt" stains. But I "paid" for it with a steep learning curve going back to saddles after it.
        Being terrible at something is the first step to being truly great at it. Struggle is the evidence of progress.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by buck22 View Post
          I had a similar experience as you once. I had started riding early in my life english. Came to own a horse late in my life and started riding western. My first western saddle was an old schooling saddle that was perfectly broken in. I upgraded to a wintec and the fenders were soft so again it felt comfortable. Then upgraded to a semi custom, and the fenders were so hard, despite training them, I started riding bareback and discovered I liked it better for all the reasons you mention.

          I rode bareback almost exclusively for 3 years, trails, jumping, everything, 6 days a week. Only time I used a saddle was for competition like team penning or pole bending. My horse was very fit at the time and had a double back, I was never on his spine and he never suffered any issues. He was built to be ridden bareback.

          I had a very hard time riding with stirrups for a long while after, even in an english saddle. When I started riding dressage, I took the stirrups off my saddles. My lovely semi custom western saddle collected dust.

          I had to force myself to learn to ride with stirrups again. I thought it was because I was free bareback and saddles were so restricting, but in reality I discovered that it was because I had a hard time being able to relax my leg and still use it effectively. I discovered that leg cues were so much easier bareback because if you tensed your leg or picked up your heel there was no repercussion, like your stirrup sliding home. While I developed great balance, and forever broke the habit of looking down, my legs became weaker and weaker and sloppy over time. Bad habits that still haunt me a decade later.

          I love the long long time I spent bareback, I wouldn't trade it for anything. I loved the freedom, loved not having to tack up, just find a step and hop on. Even loved how all my jeans developed permanent 'bare back butt" stains. But I "paid" for it with a steep learning curve going back to saddles after it.
          That is very true.
          I learned to ride as a kid bareback, we didn't have saddles, my horses were also mules and worked farming, so any riding was bareback.

          Even after years of riding with saddles later, I still can lose a stirrup occasionally, which doesn't affect my balance at all, because I don't use them that much.

          My leg was not really affected, as I am very short, so have proportionally extremely short legs and they have to be very effective.
          Then, galloping race horses, you really don't get to use your leg long and draping around the horse that much as a communicating tool, so again there leg was not imperative as it is in most other kinds of riding.

          Interesting what you say about how riding bareback so much resulted in you losing an effective lower leg.

          The big difference from riding with saddle or not for me was in wanting to lean forward and ride very light with a saddle, as sitting on a saddle feels like sitting like a lump on a log.

          Then a heifer we were running into the chute ran over me and dislocated my hip and after that, riding bareback was very painful, so had to get used to a saddle if I wanted to or not.
          Even today, I still really don't like saddles and even less western saddles.

          As with everything else, there is no action without reaction, one way of riding or other are each one complementary if used for some time, better yet if used as cross training.

          Will be interesting to hear what others have to say.

          Comment

          • Original Poster

            #6
            I need to twist the stirrups. Others have told me that. This was a new saddle when I got it.

            I bring my own padding, Bluey. He has a flat back also. I would ride with a pad but how to keep it on?

            I agree that legs do not relax in western stirrups. English stirrups are good. Will twisting stirrups work better?

            Comment

            Working...
            X