Riding bareback good or bad? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 24 Old 01-06-2013, 08:19 PM Thread Starter
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Riding bareback good or bad?

I think bareback is awsome! It gives the horse something else to think about, is more natural and gives the rider better balance and posture! My moto is if you cant do it bareback how can you do it in a saddle!
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post #2 of 24 Old 01-06-2013, 08:23 PM
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My saddle doesn't fit my mare properly so i ride her bareback. Plus she prefers it anyway because she can 'feel' what i'm asking of her. And yes it definitely does help with balance and posture!!

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post #3 of 24 Old 01-06-2013, 08:27 PM
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I agree! I prefer bareback. In fact, I'm a much better rider bareback which is probably why my horse seems to prefer that bareback pad to the saddle! I am a middle aged person (47)returning to riding after decades of being away. As a kid rider, I always rode bareback with a pad because we couldn't afford a saddle.

When I ride bare back, I'm more balanced and in rhythm with the horse. I like the way it feels too, like an massage on my seat. I'm relaxed and feel good after a bare back ride. It shakes all the tension out of my shoulders and loosens my hip and right leg, which I crushed 2 years ago in a motorcycle accident. It even improves my walking as I will always limp a bit.

As a contrast, riding in a saddle makes me feel unbalanced, off rhythm and disconnected. I am tense and tight after.

Is it the same for anyone else?
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post #4 of 24 Old 01-06-2013, 09:31 PM
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People can debate that English, Western, Side saddle, Aussie, ect is the best way to ride but I say bareback is the way to go.

When I first learned to ride English I had a lot of trouble learning to sit the trot and canter despite having lunge line lessons and practicing stirrupless. My instructor had me ride the round, fat pony bareback which finally helped me develop a proper seat.

It feels like you're not going to be as secure bareback but I've managed to ride out spooks, bolts, bucks (the one instance where you can appreciate high withers ), and rears more securely than I thought I could. I really enjoy riding bareback especially when I've been having so many saddle problems with my horse.
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post #5 of 24 Old 01-06-2013, 09:38 PM
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Bareback is fantastic for reasons mentioned, but it's said (& makes sense) that saddles help the horse by getting your weight off of their spines, as well as by distributing your weight over a larger area. Thus, it's recommended to ride a greater percentage of the time with a properly-fitting saddle.
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post #6 of 24 Old 01-06-2013, 09:52 PM Thread Starter
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I have never heard that reason before! Lol i think it really depends i mean i barrel race and i try to find the smallest saddle and pad because it does not have as much weight for the horse to carry so they run faster
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post #7 of 24 Old 01-06-2013, 10:37 PM
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I think bareback is great as long as you are able to ride without bouncing around too much. Bouncing around up there can create a lot of pain and tension in the horse's back. I ride bareback quite often but I always feel bad for the horse when I see someone up there bareback bouncing around like pogo stick!
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post #8 of 24 Old 01-06-2013, 10:40 PM Thread Starter
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Yes i agree you need great core strength to bareback ride i have taught myself to post bareback actually
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post #9 of 24 Old 01-06-2013, 11:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Barrelhorsetrainer View Post
Yes i agree you need great core strength to bareback ride i have taught myself to post bareback actually
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Try adding bridleless on top of that. Really works your core. I swear if I rode bareback and bridleless everyday I'd have a six-pack by now.
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post #10 of 24 Old 01-06-2013, 11:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Northern View Post
Bareback is fantastic for reasons mentioned, but it's said (& makes sense) that saddles help the horse by getting your weight off of their spines, as well as by distributing your weight over a larger area. Thus, it's recommended to ride a greater percentage of the time with a properly-fitting saddle.
My thought exactly! I rode a good bit bareback when I was young but sitting directly on a horse's back would undeniably "point-load" your weight onto a much smaller surface area of his back than would be the case when a saddle is acting like a "spreader". I would think that a mechanical engineer could prove that out... I love riding bareback but if the saddle is more comfortable for him, then saddled it'll be for me!
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