Riding Bareback instead of Saddled
   

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Riding Bareback instead of Saddled

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        08-13-2013, 01:58 PM
      #1
    Foal
    Riding Bareback instead of Saddled

    Hey everyone! I just joined and this is my first post so please excuse me if I make mistakes.
    I'm a town girl so I`m not exactly experienced with horses. Anyways, I work at an automotive shop out of town, and right across the road there are 2 horses and 2 ponies. As fate would have it, the owners daughter (age 15) happens to be dating my boyfriends brother. So we became great friends and now we ride almost every day during lunch hour.

    To the point of my post, I started out bareback (they only own 1 saddle and I let her have it as Jenny (the black horse, a slowpoke) has a boney back. Note that I`ve only ridden horses about 3 times, and had only 2 lessons in riding. Well, Tijuana, the mare I was riding, got eager to race back to the barn, and started loping! I held onto the mane for support with one hand and used the other hand to pull on the reins but she kept running until we got back. Now I`m used to her excitement and freely let her run every time. But anyways, I`ve been looking on horse websites for tips and stuff, and everyone`s saying how before you ride bareback you must be confident in all speeds with a saddle, and have ridden without stirrups and all that. To be honest, I`ve never ridden faster than a lope! The reason I hate the saddle is I bounce around like no tomorrow, but bareback I can sit deep. I even got the nickname Bouncy Ball just because I used the saddle.

    What`s your opinion on all this? And do you have any tips for me?

    Thanks!
    Mary

    PS. My parents are trying to buy an office right now, we can't afford lessons. I'm a Mennonite girl, us menno's tend to stick to DIY options.
         
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        08-13-2013, 02:02 PM
      #2
    Green Broke
    I learned to ride bareback. Native americans rode bareback and I would venture to say could out ride most...

    Sometimes the "proper" way isn't the only way. The hours you spend riding bareback will give you great balance.

    Having said that, be very careful and no more running toward the barn!

    And Welcome to the forum!
         
        08-13-2013, 03:22 PM
      #3
    Weanling
    You know what they say, there's more than one way to skin a cat. And, as much as I don't like the saying, it's true.

    I started bareback after riding for years with the saddle, and basically what happened was I went out to a barn of an acquaintance and was plopped right on her horse, no saddle, no reins. She led the horse around, and I practiced my balance. The next time, I got on with reins, but still bareback, and just rode around the arena however I wanted. No instruction, just doing it.

    Now, there are many others who are more qualified to hand out advice than I, but I second the be careful, especially when going back to the barn. Have fun!
         
        08-13-2013, 03:32 PM
      #4
    Yearling
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by lilkittie7991    
    Hey everyone! I just joined and this is my first post so please excuse me if I make mistakes.
    I'm a town girl so I`m not exactly experienced with horses. Anyways, I work at an automotive shop out of town, and right across the road there are 2 horses and 2 ponies. As fate would have it, the owners daughter (age 15) happens to be dating my boyfriends brother. So we became great friends and now we ride almost every day during lunch hour.

    To the point of my post, I started out bareback (they only own 1 saddle and I let her have it as Jenny (the black horse, a slowpoke) has a boney back. Note that I`ve only ridden horses about 3 times, and had only 2 lessons in riding. Well, Tijuana, the mare I was riding, got eager to race back to the barn, and started loping! I held onto the mane for support with one hand and used the other hand to pull on the reins but she kept running until we got back. Now I`m used to her excitement and freely let her run every time. But anyways, I`ve been looking on horse websites for tips and stuff, and everyone`s saying how before you ride bareback you must be confident in all speeds with a saddle, and have ridden without stirrups and all that. To be honest, I`ve never ridden faster than a lope! The reason I hate the saddle is I bounce around like no tomorrow, but bareback I can sit deep. I even got the nickname Bouncy Ball just because I used the saddle.

    What`s your opinion on all this? And do you have any tips for me?

    Thanks!
    Mary

    PS. My parents are trying to buy an office right now, we can't afford lessons. I'm a Mennonite girl, us menno's tend to stick to DIY options.
    There is a really good utube video on sitting the trot in a western saddle. A man provides the lesson, and I want to say he is of Mexican descent. I can't find you the video, I'm at work and utube is blocked.

    Keywords for the utube search: sit the western trot.

    If you are bouncing in a saddle, but not bareback, it is your stirrups. They may be too short, but most likely, you are putting weight into the stirrups. Meaning, you are pushing against them.

    When you push into the stirrups, you are no longer moving with the horse. The horse moves, but you do not (in a manner of speaking) hence the bouncing.

    In the video, the instructor demonstrates this. I can't remember which he demonstrated first, but when he pushed into the stirrups he was all over the place. It was painful to watch. You can really see the difference that this makes.

    If you do ride in a saddle again, kick your feet out of the stirrups and trot around to see how you sit. You may also not be sitting in the seat properly. I notice I have to work harder to remember to sit on my sit bones in a western saddle than when I am bareback. Bareback it is more natural to sit on the sit bones (for me atleast).

    If you move without bouncing in a saddle, put your feet back in the stirrups. If you bounce, focus on your feet. My instructor said only the ball of your foot should be in the stirrup, more angled to the big toe rather than the entire width of the foot. The stirrup is there for fine tuning balance (and when OH HE!! Happens) and nothing more.

    Hope this helps.
    lilkittie7991 likes this.
         
        08-13-2013, 03:35 PM
      #5
    Weanling
    You can learn to ride bareback, there's nothing really wrong with it. It will give you good balance and teach you how to move with the horse, but it will mess things up for you if you want to learn to ride "properly" with a saddle, in shows, etc. The reason for this is that you use your legs completely differently without a saddle. But if you're just riding for fun and you're comfortable wrapping your legs around the horse and going, then there's no real problem with it.

    I used to love to run around bareback on the pony I leased, so much so that I never used a saddle when I would ride her. After a month or so of this I was in a jumping lesson and my horse kept refusing the jumps and I fell a couple times. My trainer remark was "looks like someone's been riding bareback." She made me start practicing in a saddle again, so that I got used to keeping my legs in the right position to jump again.
         
        08-13-2013, 03:59 PM
      #6
    Green Broke
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by TessaMay    
    You can learn to ride bareback, there's nothing really wrong with it. It will give you good balance and teach you how to move with the horse, but it will mess things up for you if you want to learn to ride "properly" with a saddle, in shows, etc. The reason for this is that you use your legs completely differently without a saddle. But if you're just riding for fun and you're comfortable wrapping your legs around the horse and going, then there's no real problem with it.

    I used to love to run around bareback on the pony I leased, so much so that I never used a saddle when I would ride her. After a month or so of this I was in a jumping lesson and my horse kept refusing the jumps and I fell a couple times. My trainer remark was "looks like someone's been riding bareback." She made me start practicing in a saddle again, so that I got used to keeping my legs in the right position to jump again.
    Really? I did just fine. (and I don't typically "wrap my legs around the horse" when I ride bareback ..) Maybe it's the way you ride bareback...
         
        08-13-2013, 04:41 PM
      #7
    Weanling
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by texasgal    
    Really? I did just fine. (and I don't typically "wrap my legs around the horse" when I ride bareback ..) Maybe it's the way you ride bareback...
    Very possible

    Though I can switch back and forth between the two now with no problems, so maybe I was just too much of a newb back then.
         
        08-13-2013, 05:34 PM
      #8
    Foal
    I have riden my horse bare back and with a saddle, I was taught to ride bare back and I am now just learning to ride in a saddle, I find there are advantages and disadvantages riding bare back and in the saddle,, some times ride we do are not good to bareback, but just out on a leisurely hack I go bare back,
         
        08-13-2013, 09:20 PM
      #9
    Green Broke
    Rode bareback ... again .... tonight.
         
        08-13-2013, 11:29 PM
      #10
    Yearling
    Bareback is much warmer in the winter and much wetter in the summer. Hahahaha
         

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