Why it pays to have your cinch tight! - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 42 Old 01-23-2011, 11:10 AM
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To loose a cinch happened to me one time, but I have come off for other reasons also. The one time it was a to loose cinch I was riding 2 different horses with my one Western saddle. One of the horses was an older QH mare. The other was a mare in foal. When I rode one horse or the other I had to adjust the length of the cinch straps on both sides of the saddle. After having had rode the mare in foal and tacking up the older mare I was shortening the cinch strap on the offside/right side and saw I had a small loop of slack in the cinch strap, but didn't pay mind to it. I completed saddling up and everything went fine up until I was doing some figure-8's at the trot and all of a sudden I was on the ground and the saddle was on the underneath side of the mare. Luckly the mare just stood still and don't spook at the dangling saddle. It was totally my fault that I took the fall.
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post #12 of 42 Old 01-23-2011, 11:52 AM
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There was actually a situation at a barn I used to ride at with a too tight girth. The horse was sensitive and got aggravated by the girth and threw a rider, trampled them, and was extremely difficult to catch. All this from a normally pokey back-of-the-group horse.

And on the other hand, I had a friend riding at a jumper show and during it she just sort of...Slipped off. Turns out you could fit two fists between the girth and the horse's belly!
Girth safety 101.

"The wise man thinks he knows nothing.
The fool thinks he knows everything."

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post #13 of 42 Old 01-23-2011, 03:07 PM
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I have to laugh, simply because I had very simliar 'moment'. I was doing EVERYTHING wrong. I had a saddle that I found, on a horse that I had never ridden before and only my 12yo son as back up...of course, the saddle didn't fit and when I got on him he walked fine, then I asked for a rack and he gave me a trot and I promptly started to slide to the right. THe horse thought I was asking him to side step! So of course off he goes while I slowly rotate under his belly!...did I mention I was waering sneakers that got stuck in the stirrups?!

Thankfully I screwed my head back on and haven't made the same mistakes since! Looking back I wonder.."what the HE!! was I thinking!!!"
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post #14 of 42 Old 01-23-2011, 03:32 PM
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ok, so this may be stupid, but from someone that's never had a professional lession or really been shown anything properly, how do you know how tight to go? Does it vary with each horse or is there a simple way, like if you can slip 2 fingers between, or something like that? When I was a kid, all my friends barrel raced and I was always told "as tight as you can get it"
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post #15 of 42 Old 01-23-2011, 03:32 PM
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Oh, also. Abby thinks she's oh-so-clever and holds her breath when I cinch her up. Too bad I know how much excess latigo there should be and you can very obviously see her belly puffed up. She also has this really haughty expression like she's outsmarted me.

Poseidon does that too, but she has such a big belly already, you can't tell until you walk away and let her realize that she has to breath eventually.
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post #16 of 42 Old 01-23-2011, 03:37 PM
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funny how many people have had the same or extremely similar experiences. I did too! I normally ride in an english saddle but this particular day it wasn't at the barn so I had to use a western saddle. I was working with this womans haflinger mare who was doing really well under saddle but was a little spooky in the back of the riding arena, so I was working with her on that. I had her all tacked up and was riding her at a walk, just back and forth across the back side of the arena so she would get settled there. She suddenly spooked at spun and bolted across the arena towards the front, which has happened before. In an english saddle I had no problem staying on until I got her to stop. But apparently I didn't tighten the girth on the western saddle enough and when she spun it slipped to the side a little. I felt it slip and was trying my darndest to keep it from going but on a galloping haflinger, it was no good. I fell off to the side, no harm really since she was small I didn't have far to fall and the dirt was soft. But I saw her continue on, with the saddle slipping more and more to the side, she jumped sideways trying to get away from it and it flipped over so it was on her upside down. She went bucking bronco style through the fence of the arena taking out two boards and then took off into the pasture. All you had to do to find her was follow the pieces of saddle that led a trail to her. Poor girl was traumatized, she finally decided to freeze and just stand still. The first girl to her just tugged on the girth and what was left of the saddle came off. She was huffing and puffing, nostrils all flared. Luckily no one was hurt that day. She had a few scratches and cuts on her legs, probably from crashing through the fence. I felt bad that she destroyed this womans saddle but she wasn't mad about it. I think I'll stick with english
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post #17 of 42 Old 01-23-2011, 03:40 PM
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Our very first horse was traumatized by something like this with the saddle ending up underneath, during his early training. We didn't know at the time that it would take years for a horse to really get over something like this. He was petrified of the saddle for the longest time after we got him and would tremble so much he'd almost fall down. He finally got to where we could ride him but if he ever had anything touching his flanks he was a rodeo ride.
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post #18 of 42 Old 01-23-2011, 06:13 PM
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If would do me wise to remember this thread. I also walk around initially on a loose rein and girth loose enough to fit a bus under according to my trainer. Think I'll snug up a little more before getting on now that it's so freakin' cold. Glad you're okay.

You just have to see your distance...you don't have to like it.
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post #19 of 42 Old 01-23-2011, 06:16 PM
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Glad to hear that you're okay.

I've only had this happen to me once. Luckily it was on a gelding so old he couldn't take off running even if he wanted to.

Red Money Maker (Red) - 2004 Sorrel QH Gelding
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post #20 of 42 Old 01-23-2011, 06:36 PM Thread Starter
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This can happen in an English saddle, too. On Mac, the same super spinner Appy I lease, I was out riding and something similar happened. I was actually out that day trying to work with him because twice early in the week he had spun and dumped me (once bareback). So, I thought I'd work with him. I rode him and kept him busy everytime I saw that he was getting worred. Finally, I felt that he was getting so tense that he needed to let some of the tension out of his body by moving forward. Off we trotted, and by God, he spun again. It was so abrupt and I guess i put too much weight on one side and the centrifugal force was amazing. I moved the dressage saddel off to the side and I went flying, not just rolling. That was a scary and painful fall, but I might not have come off if I had tightened the girth enough.

HOw much is enough? I just do it by feel and obvioulsly, I need to recheck at some point after riding for a bit. It's just that one has so many uneventful rides that you get to expecting nothing to happen then it does.
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