Girth size? - The Horse Forum

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post #1 of 12 Old 04-22-2013, 09:45 AM Thread Starter
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Girth size?

The whole time I have been riding horses (about 11yrs) I always thought that a size 48" girth was the average size. It was what I was first taught to use and the size girth I have, which fits a wide variety of horses perhaps not on the idea billet hole...but it tightens snugly.

But now that I am sort of passively looking for a new girth on ebay, I've notice that a LOT of the used girths are 52"-56". I'm just wondering if this is because of the trend towards larger horses (warmbloods) or if it's something else all together? What size girth do you use? It's just move of a curiosity thing than anything.
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post #2 of 12 Old 04-22-2013, 12:03 PM
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My horse has a 46" girth for his jumping saddle & 24" for dressage. He's a QH cross, so I wouldn't be surprised if he's a "typical" size. I think he'd be fine with a slightly longer 48" girth.

Before I got him, though, I leased several different horses. The last one I leased was a TBxHanoverian and he was a lot bigger around. I didn't have a short-billeted saddle for him, but I do know his dressage girth was 32" so I suspect he would have needed something much longer than a 48" girth if I had used that type of saddle with him!
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post #3 of 12 Old 04-22-2013, 02:48 PM
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I have girths ranging in size from 50" to 56". I own 3 tb's, 16.2H, 16.3H and 17.1H. The 52" and 54" sizes fit my 16.2H and 16.3H horses, but mostly use the 52" girths on them. The 54" and 56" sizes fit my 17.1H horse, but I almost always use the 56" girth on him. They're all pretty tall, so they need longer girths to use with my close contact saddle. I also notice that if I use thicker pads and thicker half pads I need to use the longer size girth to get it done up to where I like it to be, or if I use the shorter size I just don't get it done up as far up on the saddle billets as I normally would.

I do think that the larger girth sizes like this are probably seen more often because there are a lot of larger horses, like warmbloods and tall tb's in the english riding disciplines.
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post #4 of 12 Old 04-22-2013, 02:52 PM
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Even on my bigger horses, I've never had to go above a 52". Most of mine use a 48". I rode one very very fat boy that needed a 54" years ago, and everyone teased him about his "fat horse girth" because it was so much bigger than any of the others.

"Keep a leg on each side and your mind in the middle"
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post #5 of 12 Old 04-22-2013, 02:57 PM
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Depends on the saddle, the horse and the girth.

Reeco's old saddle he had a 40" girth (this is 15hh of warmblood), his new saddle he needs a 44" with elastic.

A 46" would be loose even on the top hole of his new saddle (top hole both sides) so a 48" would be absolutly useless

I'd love to see you try a 46" girth on a show cob though as they normaly are of the 56" minimum variety!
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post #6 of 12 Old 04-22-2013, 04:08 PM Thread Starter
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It could just be that I've been riding similarly shaped horses and never really needed anything larger. Most horses my 48" fits just fine, on the rare occasion I do have to coax a horse into "sucking it in" a bit to pop it onto the billet...but that was one horse and he was pretty chubby.

I guess I just wanted to make sure I wasn't using the wrong size girth or something since so many seem to be much larger.

By "fits just fine" I mean its at the appropriate tightness midway up the billets on both sides....I'm anal about making sure the girth is tightened evenly one both sides and I do it very slowly, going one hole at a time back and forth from side to side. I may be too careful with how I tighten it, but it just makes me cringe when someone attaches the off side of the girth on the 1st or 2nd hole and the hikes it up to the 6th hole on the near side...can't be comfortable for the horse like that...
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post #7 of 12 Old 04-22-2013, 07:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Raven13 View Post
By "fits just fine" I mean its at the appropriate tightness midway up the billets on both sides....I'm anal about making sure the girth is tightened evenly one both sides and I do it very slowly, going one hole at a time back and forth from side to side. I may be too careful with how I tighten it, but it just makes me cringe when someone attaches the off side of the girth on the 1st or 2nd hole and the hikes it up to the 6th hole on the near side...can't be comfortable for the horse like that...
I'm the same way My horse was very girthy when I got him a year ago and has just gotten over it in the past couple months after A LOT of very slow, careful tightening of the girth!
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post #8 of 12 Old 04-22-2013, 09:42 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by verona1016 View Post
I'm the same way My horse was very girthy when I got him a year ago and has just gotten over it in the past couple months after A LOT of very slow, careful tightening of the girth!
Glad to know I'm not the only one that does this....I always get strange looks from people when I'm going from side to side adjusting the girth so many times. On the off occasion I've even had some people get so annoyed that they just come over and tighten it up to how they think it should be all in one shot. I'm always trying to take the horse into consideration though, and have even been known to tighten the girth in between putting polos on to give the horse time to adjust and relax before tightening again.

People may get annoyed by how "slow" I am but I know the horse I'm riding appreciates it. And there's nothing more annoying than someone trying to "help" you tack up your horse
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post #9 of 12 Old 04-23-2013, 02:55 AM
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sorry but catering to a horse like that is just asking for problems down the line.
My horse is girthy, he fidgets when the girth is done up. If I dithered like you do the saddle would be on the floor very quickly.
His girth is even on both sides because I'll stick it on the 4th hole on the off side and then do it up to the same on the near side. Pony gets told off if he move whilst I'm doing it up

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post #10 of 12 Old 04-23-2013, 12:24 PM
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I agree faye. There should only be a minor adjustment or two at most. Set the off side where it will end, and then girth up to snug. You don't have to crank it, but snug it, and then after you are finished with bridling, or other checks, go back and snug up the girth one final time to make sure it's right. You will end up with a horse that fidgets more if you flit back and forth toying with the girth, than if you just do it up politely and be done.

"Keep a leg on each side and your mind in the middle"
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