What exactly is English Riding - Page 3

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What exactly is English Riding

This is a discussion on What exactly is English Riding within the English Riding forums, part of the Riding Horses category

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    09-03-2009, 06:49 PM
^ Something similar was done at Equitana this year, as part of the all-stars demonstration. The Campdraft guy got on the huge showjumper, the dressage guy on the small, quick campdraft horse, etc.

I don't know. I guess I just hate how western riders *normally* automatically discount someone when they hear they ride *english*. I hate the stereotypical views of an english/western riders. I hate that we can't just be judged on how well we ride, not what we choose to put on our horse. I ride english, alternating between a wintec AP and my stock saddle, yet I can work a cow as well as most western riders, and have worked on getting really solid stops, roll backs, hanuch turns etc on my horse. It's simply the way I like to ride and have my horse. Yet if I tell someone on here I ride english, without explaining, they get the absolute wrong idea.
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    09-03-2009, 07:47 PM
I just finished my last year of 4-H, and I plan on applying to be an assistant leader with my club in the future, so I have a lot of friends through my 4-H club. I'm really the only English rider in a club of Gamers, maybe a few do WP every now and again. One of my closest friends and I regularly "argue" and debate whether English or Western is "better." He knows that he can dig at me and get it going (usually over "those stupid pants"), and I know that at the slightest scent of anything being potentially better than gaming he's going to pounce, so we pretty frequently have this discussion (I always win ). It's all in fun, and kind of a running joke, but we usually each end up conceding that something is cool about the other one's riding style, whether he says that watching horses "jump big" is cool, or I say that a fast barrel pattern is awesome, it all evens out.

I don't usually hear anyone discounted for riding English, usually if I hear anything it runs the other way around, English riders berating western riders for not riding English. I do have to say that after switching to English, there's not much that a horse can do that will remove my rump from a Western saddle, and if I ride western too many times I feel "sloppy" in the English, but that's just me. I do think that English riding tends to be seen as more "formal," if that's the right word, at least here in the US. Rider position is more heavily emphasized, there tends to be more mechanics and theory discussed vs. a similar level of Western.That's not at all to say that the mechanics and theory don't apply in Western, just that they seem to be more discussed and "beaten in" in English, at least in my experience.

Neither is better than the other, and there are fantastic riders from each style and every discipline.
    09-03-2009, 11:29 PM
^ I guess I see the discounting from a different side, as I have always identified more with the 'western type' of riding. It feels like western riders think that english riders couldn't handle a fast cowhorse, or the rough terrain that they ride through, so on and so forth. I also ride mounted games, which is a very fast, very dangerous, very exciting discpline that is seen as 'english' but is more akin to the western style/idea of riding.

I am a very aggressive, and very 'thrill seeking' rider, but I am also a perfectionist, and insist on impeccable manners and habits from my horses. I will spend weeks perfecting one perfect stop. I guess I just don't think I really *fit* into either the english or western mould, and it's just really frustrating that people expect you to.

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