Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Just south of sanity
Blink, true endurance saddles are generally English in style because they're lighter in weight and easier on the horse.
Endurance riding is not for the occasional rider, or someone who just wants to trail ride. Heck, I've done CTRs and LDRs, and I'm nowhere near qualified to ride endurance.
Endurance is an extreme sport, and riders and horses have to be in top shape in order to compete. The catchphrase for endurance is, "To finish is to win", because so many horse/rider teams get disqualified for not being physically fit enough to continue.
It's a grueling sport, and its groups are very tight knit. Not to say you can't break into endurance, it's just finding a club in your area. They're few and far between. The closest one to me is in Fort Valley, which isn't close at all.
All English tack is sold separately. When you buy a saddle that's what you get, a saddle. No girth, no irons, no leathers.
Stirrup leathers, irons and girths are personal choice items, because they come in different sizes, makes, types, and fabrics/leather and no one size fits all.
For instance, I buy 4.75" irons, because I use jointed. When I used hard irons, I used 4.5". For someone else, 5" in hard irons might be necessary.
I prefer neoprene girths with elastic on both ends. Someone else might prefer a leather or felt girth, with no elastic. I generally use 42" or 44" girths. Someone else might need bigger or smaller, depending on their saddle and size of their horse.
Stirrup leathers come in synthetic or leather, and are of varying lengths. What I take in a leather might be too short or long for someone else.
The only reason Western saddles come with stirrups is because they're already attached. Everything else comes separately, just like English tack.
Last edited by Speed Racer; 07-29-2010 at 02:27 PM.