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Just a simple question

This is a discussion on Just a simple question within the Horse Riding forums, part of the Riding Horses category

     
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        08-01-2010, 09:16 PM
      #81
    Foal
    ^i'm so sorry you have to sell him. I hope things work out okay for you

    As for me I have always ridden and adored english. I live in new england and where I live it's very difficult to find a western stable so I pretty much only had the choice of riding english. Plus, my grandparents and mom rode english. I have ridden western before and I have nothing against western riders but I hated it. I guess i'm so used to a small english saddle. I'm relatively small and I feel like i'm just swimming in the western saddle. Also, I feel like I have more control in english tack although I ride with extremely loose reins because my horse flips when I tighten her reins. I still enjoy a lot of the pleasures of riding western. For example I take my horse into the field all the time and gallop her. I also take her on trail rides in my english tack. Plus, being an english rider I get to jump and I love jumping because it gives me goals to reach for (ex: jumping higher, more confusing courses) I enjoy the sensation of jumping and the feel of english tack, although I would love to be able to actually take western lessons and learn how to enjoy this style of riding more thoroughly than my past experiences.
         
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        08-01-2010, 09:39 PM
      #82
    Trained
    I don't ride any 'discipline'. I just ride. I do what I feel like doing on any given day and I ride in what is comfortable, fits my horse, and suits the job.

    When I took lessons, it was in english saddles. When I got my first pony, I rode in a huuuuge old stock saddle that I swam in (I was 10) and went back to my ponies rump. The first saddle we bought was a Wintec 500 - because it was cheap.

    That saddle has lasted me ten years and is still my comfiest saddle. In that saddle I have done: Dressage, jumping, polocrosse, cattle work, mustering, gameing, mounted games, trail riding, endurance, and just about anything else you can think of.

    I don't think security is about the saddle - It is about knowing your tack. I galloped headlong downhill through rocks, rabbit holes, logs, long grass chasing sheep in my wintec and never missed a beat. Had you asked me to do the same in a western saddle? I probably would have landed on my head. I was used to my tack, I knew it's limits, I knew how to sit it. I am currently breaking in a pony in that same wintec.

    As to what type of riding I prefer - When I was a bit younger, I was all about the SPEED. Mounted games, sporting, polocrosse, jumping fast. The faster the better. Our trail rides were 70% trot/canter, 25% gallop, and maybe 5% walking :]

    I also always had an affinity for working cattle and other working disciplines. I was born on a farm and my dad is a farmer. I always loved helping him bring the cattle in, and I did it fine on my 11h pony and 14h arab.

    Nowadays? I'm more interested in training than any 'specific' discipline. However I am a strong believer in every single horse I ride knowing how to move off leg, stop on a dime, turn on a dime, be able to gallop without going nuts, as well as work with a contact and in frame. Basically I want a horse I could do anything on.

    When I compete nowadays I generally do ASH shows and campdrafting, as I still like a bit of speed :]

    When I finally had money I got a custom made saddle - A stock saddle. It fits my purpose. It took me months to be as secure in that as I was in my wintec.

    To me, it's all just riding. Except for roping, there is nothing I can't do in my english saddle.
         
        08-01-2010, 11:34 PM
      #83
    Green Broke
    I couldn't figure out what Campdrafting was, so I googled it. It sounds fun! I've cut cows before in my English saddle so I can totally relate.
         
        08-02-2010, 01:06 AM
      #84
    Trained
    Lol, no one knows what campdrafting is over there really - it's kind of similar to working cow, but none of the boring bits! (Not that working cow is boring, lol).
         
        08-02-2010, 03:32 AM
      #85
    Foal
    Theres like nobody who ride western here, so english has always been the only choice! I love it of course, and I doubt it would be any different if I got to try western because I have always loved the jumping.
         
        08-02-2010, 11:03 AM
      #86
    Started
    I started out western, it was all that I knew. I had always wanted to try english/jumping because I always thought it was so pretty and more "uptown" and took more skill than western.

    I started riding & showing at an arab barn in hunt seat. I loved it! I remember riding for about a year in hunter then getting in a western saddle. It felt so bulky & it seemed like I couldn't feel the horse. :/ Nowadays I ride both about evenly, from WP & HUS to reining & sport horse under saddle.
         
        08-02-2010, 11:15 AM
      #87
    Started
    Oh and just for the record, I am still in love with the girths & stirrups of english saddles.

    As far as security, I actually feel like I can hang on better in an english saddle, I guess because of the close contact? I just hang on with my legs/seat, I never even think about grabbing anything with my hands, even when I'm on a bronc-y horse :p
    The horn & such just seems in the way! :)
         
        08-02-2010, 11:57 AM
      #88
    Yearling
    Well, my seat of choice is bareback because I think that is when you truly get the best feel of your mount. With a handful of mane I think you can do just about anything bareback. Plus the tack is much easier to lug over to the pasture ;P

    Other than that, I ride western. I think if you take the time to listen to and feel your horse, it can be as muc contact with your horse as an english saddle.

    I have ridden english in a couple lessons and gone on a trail ride english, but like to stretch my legs out. I do admire those who can jump and do dressage. I would LOVE to be able to jump someday.
         
        08-02-2010, 12:35 PM
      #89
    Yearling
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by draftrider    
    I like speed, fast turns, and English to me seems more "Prawncing Ponehs" than anything.
    Interesting you should say that... The only Western riders I've come into contact with rode Western pleasure, so to me English riding = fast, Western riding = slow. I think I would like reining but probably not enough to give up jumping.

    I also have ridden up and down mountains on a flat saddle and I found it more comfortable than a Western one (though maybe that's because the seat was quilted).
         
        08-02-2010, 01:14 PM
      #90
    Weanling
    To be honest, to me, riding is riding. My tack depends on what I'm doing because it will be more functional for the activity and better for the horse, it has nothing to do with my comfort or security level, my balance and confidence are mine, not my saddle's.

    To know a horse, to understand a horse's mind and body, is far beyond what any particular "discipline" can offer. If I'm jumping, I'll use a saddle designed for it, as there is a reason it was designed for that and its better for the horse. If I'm working on a physical level with a horse, I will usually ride english, not because I can feel more, but because the horse can move more. The horse has a lot to tell you if you are listening and you can hear just as much through the western saddle.

    I usually tack up western for running barrels or working cows, but have had to do it in english tack and it didn't change the performance of me or the horse.

    Some say "I ride english", "I ride western", "I run barrels", "I jump", and all I hear is "because that is what I like to do". If you ask me, I just ride for the horse, not the other way around. If you try that, you will find that the horse will give you back so much more. There is a correct biomechanical function for horse and rider that does not change with the tack. Sure, you may see different fads that may be more for the aesthetic appearance and "trends" that may not be the best thing for the horses or the riders body, but when you break it down, an athlete is an athlete.

    I've found that in teaching people, the easiest people to teach are those that aren't doing it for themselves. One of my students wanted her daughter to exercise her horse and had her take a lesson. The daughter, a teenager, could care less about the horse, but wanted to do it for her mother. The horse had never worked so beautifully. My brother wanted me to teach him to ride so he could relate to his girlfriend. My brother is a natural athlete, but hasn't spent a lot of time in the saddle. In less than an hour, he was doing thing easily that take most people months to get a feel for.

    I know it sounds crazy and is slightly off topic, but don't worry so much about english or western, don't worry so much about what you like to do. Try riding for someone else, even if that someone else is the horse that you are on. You will find the experience much more rewarding and you will be surprised at the progress you make.
         

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