Perfect sized horse? - The Horse Forum
  • 1 Post By shellybean
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post #1 of 7 Old 01-29-2013, 12:28 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2012
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Perfect sized horse?

This is kind of out of the blue, but when I was previously looking at horses before I found Apollo, I was having trouble finding a "perfect sized" horse for me. I am about 5'11 and weigh about 140 pounds. Apollo is said to be 15.2hh but I have not measured him myself, his owner said he is closer to 15.3hh. I rode him and felt very comfortable on him...I feel he is the perfect sized horse for me.

Before I found Apollo, I was riding a 15hh Arab/QH for about a year and I LOVED him...but I just felt too tall. I also rode 2 warm bloods for a couple months and they were 17.3hh and 16.3hh and I felt they were too big for me...(I guess I just didn't like the idea of possibly falling of such a big horse).

So I'm do you determine if you are too big for your horse? Do you go by weight or height?

This is me on a 15hh (guesstimate) Arab/QH last year. Do you think I am too big for him? Don't mind my terrible posture in this photo...I just got back into riding after an almost year long break due to school.

Dusty by adayinmylife9, on Flickr
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Last edited by shellybean; 01-29-2013 at 12:31 PM.
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post #2 of 7 Old 01-29-2013, 01:23 PM
Join Date: Nov 2012
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I'm tall like you, so I usually go by weight, since I've never ridden a horse that's tall enough to look "big enough" for me. I say, if the horse is comfortable carrying you, then it's fine to ride, so long as you don't mind aesthetics. The horses around here are generally fairly small (14.2hh-15hh) and if I were looking for a horse that looked more "matched" to me physically, I'd probably try something that was at least 16hh.

Of course it's also going to depends on the build of the horse. Someone might look out of proportion on a lanky 16hh horse, while they look just right on a stocky, solid 15hh horse.

As for the picture, I don't think you look too big at all!
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post #3 of 7 Old 01-29-2013, 01:28 PM
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^^^^ Yes,the build makes a lot of difference. I'm 6'4" and the big barrels on our mares (14.2-15hh) take up a lot of leg.
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post #4 of 7 Old 01-29-2013, 01:36 PM
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It's a relative question. It's only REALLY important in the show ring. You are certainly not too heavy for the horse you are riding in this picture. You need to feel comfortable on the size horse you prefer to ride, and THAT will determine the range of height that you will want to buy/ride.
Since we get attached to and put oodles of training time into our horse it is difficult when we find that the only problem is that the size isn't the right fit for us. No other person can tell you if it feels good or not. I bought my 16'3hh KMH for my 6'5" DH. I love the horse, the training is going swimmingly, but I would never have bought this size for my 5'4" frame, bc I don't enjoy the large movement of a big horse.
This isn't new. In fact, the US Cavalry suggested spur "down" for a shorter horse or shorter rider, and spur "up" for a taller horse/ taller rider, so that the rider's spur would be effective.
IMHO 15'3hh would be a good height for you. For me, 15'2hh seems to be the perfect height.

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post #5 of 7 Old 01-29-2013, 05:04 PM
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I think this is a relative question and different for every horse. It can depend on your height, horse height, and most importantly the size of the horse's barrel. I've seen 15.3" quarter horses that someone your size would fit on but I have also seen 15.3" TBs that would make you look like your are riding a pony.

All that matters is if you feel comfortable.
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post #6 of 7 Old 01-30-2013, 02:33 AM
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Oklahoma
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Is it a looks question? or a weight carrying question? Who knows about looks? Everyone has their own opinion. It changes with the years, country, culture, style of riding, etc. Just because a horse is tall doesn't mean he was bred or is built to carry weight. There are a lot of 17 h TB out there that cannot carry much weight due to the length of their backs and a lot of short well built ponies that carry weight well.
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post #7 of 7 Old 01-30-2013, 08:43 PM
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Arkansas
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Oh my, over the years I've changed my mind a lot about what I "like" to ride. At 5'2" I guess it doesn't matter what size the horse is. When I was young the bigger and faster was right up my alley, now I'm more into the pony sizes! You look good, I've seen girls your height on anything from 14 hands on up and if they're having fun and confident they look fantastic! Enjoy whatever the size horse your on.
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