Western V. English - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 19 Old 04-06-2014, 03:24 PM
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I prefer English saddles because I've always felt more comfortable in one, which is strange because I started Western. Something about direct reining and the lack of a horn...dunno, it just always felt right from the first time I sat in the saddle.

All disciplines have their hard parts and easy parts.
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post #12 of 19 Old 04-06-2014, 03:27 PM
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Originally Posted by DancingArabian View Post
You're not comparing the same things.

Horse shows are often serious business for some people. Doesn't matter what discipline. You can't compare the horse show atmosphere to pleasure riders. It doesn't work.

Compare riders who don't show across disciplines. Then compare riders who do show. It's really different.

Have to disagree....of course you can compare it! And from my experience....showing or not showing is inconsequential in this discussion.
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post #13 of 19 Old 04-06-2014, 03:41 PM
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Originally Posted by GotaDunQH View Post
Have to disagree....of course you can compare it! And from my experience....showing or not showing is inconsequential in this discussion.
It was directed at someone's comment. Specifically:

Originally Posted by Kyro View Post
I haven't had the privilege to try western riding yet. I'm hoping I can come to the US next year and try it :) For now, I'm stuck with English or going bareback, haha.
I think I'd like western actually. The people seem warmer and more sincere there. Often people in English competitions look down on you and just care for themselves, at least that is what I've experienced - I'm sure there are lots of people that can prove otherwise. Western just seems to have a friendly atmosphere. Is this true or really depends?
Kyro said that at the English shows, people seem snobby but Western riders seem friendlier and more laid back (but this isn't based off of experience at a Western show).

People who show are often stressed, anxious, nervous, and tend to take their riding a little more seriously than people who don't show. Not everyone, but overall as a group, I think people who show take themselves more seriously because they're working against the clock because of show dates and ribbons and points and all that. Obviously, it doesn't mean that people who don't show don't take riding seriously, it's just different when you're competing and have deadlines.

Now to compare someone stressed out and freaking out a little because they have to get everything perfect for their 6 minute ride against someone who has all day to get it 'right' and doesn't have a bunch of show fees on the line - I don't think that's really a fair comparison.

I see WAY more negative behavior going on at a horse show than at a pure pleasure barn. I've not seen people chop tails or roach manes or spray paint horses at a non-show barn. I've also seen some really, really decent acts of fantastic sportsmanship at competitions. I'm not saying one is better than the other, but they're different enough IMO that they should be considered on their own.
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* I'm often reading and posting from mobile and Siri loves to make a mockery of the English language.
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post #14 of 19 Old 04-07-2014, 12:16 PM
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I think discipline wars are dumb, but I think everyone prefers one over the other at least a little.
I ride both but I prefer western. I like the events it offers, the tack and horses. I like that western horses are trained to do a lot of the work them selves. You shouldn't have to micro manage them. Just look at cutting horses. It helps me think about the next step because I don't have to hold my horse's hand through the current on.

Having a bigger saddle never bothers me. I really don't notice much difference in how much I can feel my horse when riding english.... and tall boots hurt.
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post #15 of 19 Old 04-07-2014, 02:09 PM
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I ride English and Western, prefer English if just out for a ride but at shows have found for the most part that people are nice and friendly in English, western or dressage ( have to say dressage people were the best, to my surprise as I thought they would be the opposite). I respect both types of riding, but I do feel more comfortable and secure in my English or dressage saddle. I usually do trail rides in the dressage saddle and find it the most comfortable. If I am going out to clear or make new trails I use the western saddle just because I can take more "stuff" along.
I hate to see people judged merely on the type of saddle they put on a horse.
One thing I noticed, when I would go out on a ride with a bunch of friends, I would be the only one with an English saddle. Took some teasing but always noticed that my horse was not sweating as much as the other horses, was it because of the riding style or maybe my horse was in better shape or was I riding more balanced on him? I have always been curious about that.
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post #16 of 19 Old 04-07-2014, 04:23 PM
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I've ridden both. I love dressage and loved my dressage saddle when I had it but I'm really a western girl at heart, so after my beloved old mare died and I bought another horse, I also bought a western saddle. I started riding western many years ago, the switched to English. I've also ridden in an Australian saddle, but I ultimately prefer western.
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post #17 of 19 Old 04-07-2014, 05:57 PM
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I prefer Western. I started riding English last year, my instructor is an English jumping champ, but I take lessons in a Western saddle now (still with the same instructor). It's like cheating to me in a way. It doesn't require as much work on my part to balance, which is probably not good for developing my muscles and seat, but sure makes the lessons more fun. :)

“When I bestride him, I soar, I am a hawk: he trots the air; the earth sings when he touches it; the basest horn of his hoof is more musical than the pipe of Hermes. ” ~ William Shakespeare
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post #18 of 19 Old 04-07-2014, 06:09 PM
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I have ridden both, there should be no war, each is a challenge in its own right, it is as easy to be a poor rider in either saddle, and takes time and effort to be a good rider.

As to show people, well the last small event I was at, the morning was hunters and jumpers, quite friendly, but very focussed. In the afternoon it was Western, some beer appeared, someone did say "here hold my beer"

Overall I have to say that so far I have found Western Riders for more welcoming, far happier for people to turn up and have a go, and have got so much help support from the Western community both online and in real life!
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post #19 of 19 Old 04-07-2014, 08:26 PM
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I've ridden both. I prefer western, although I really prefer an Australian saddle with a western curb bit...but my horse seems to do better in a western saddle. My lower back was injured 5 years ago, and it seems to be improving since I switched to a western saddle in November, so I'll probably stay in a western track for some time. I'd give a lot to get past the back pain in the evenings...

If my back heals enough, I may try an English saddle again, but retaining the western approach to using reins:

FWIW, I think it is silly to say one is harder than the other. Both can keep you busy for a lifetime of learning, if you want to do it well.
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"Make the right thing easy and the wrong thing...well, ignore it mostly."
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