Has anyone here ever used a buddy seat for their kids? My girls have only been on a horse a few times, so I am kind of leary about letting them ride on their own. I know lessons will eventually be needed, but for now, I was wondering what you guys think of this.
Army, I was leary too about that buddy seat. Never did get one, was so afraid to have my kid ride behind me. I think it would depend on how old your kids are and if they will hold on tight enough. Posted via Mobile Device
I've never used one but I've seen them used. Every year we go on a benefit ride, Cowboy Up Ride Against Cancer, and there is always someone using one. It is a trail ride and most people go at a walk for it. I don't know how the buddy seat would be for trotting or loping, but it seems to work well for the trail ride.
I agree with usandpets. They are good for trail rides. Not sure about trotting or loping. - one of my barn mates used one with her kid who was old enough to understand sitting still and quiet/hanging on/etc. and the horse was a good quiet plug. So I guess it worked well for Them.
We have never used anything like that. Whenever I was a kid and would ride with either a parent or my older brother, I would either be put into the saddle and they would ride behind (when I was younger and couldn't really hold on for myself very well) or I would just ride behind and hold onto the cantle (when I was a bit older). If the saddle is big enough and the child is small enough, I just put them in front of me in the seat, however, I would never go faster than a walk like that. For jogging, I would get behind the saddle.
Me, personally, I much prefer to have kids riding in front of me. That way, I can see if they start to get off balance and help them to re-center or catch them if they start to slide. Not to mention, I can give them the reins when I think they are ready and I am right there behind them if they get scared or something goes wrong.
I use one with my grandchildren, on the second one now. They are great, my grandson was 3 when he started using it and the granddaughter is 3 this year. The horse hopped a couple of times and he had no problem, the other horse spun with him and he was still fine (these are really good horses, but they are horses and we ride quite a bit). He did fall asleep on one ride and his poppy pulled him out and put him in front of him (afraid he would fall off). I am a really cautious grammy and found this a good transition before riding his own horse!
I've seen them used but would be very leery myself. It sits right on top of the kidneys, a unbalanced bouncing child could cause pain and in turn an accident.
We've always done the same as smrobs. If there is a need to be behind the saddle it's me, I would be very uncomfortable not being able to see the child to assist if the need would arise. I pretty much do exactly as smrobs laid out and then transition to ponying them on another safe horse. My daughter is 5 and just went on her first trail ride without being ponied and by the end of our ride she insisted on being the leader :) She rides my 22 yr old retired reining mare that we jokingly say would just do radar ears if a bomb went off under her belly.