Bay too small?
 
 

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Bay too small?

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  • What is the smallest adult horse
  • Can a 220 pound woman ride a 14.3 horse?

 
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    07-14-2011, 01:26 AM
  #1
Foal
Bay too small?

I'm not sure if this is the right place to ask, if not please move it I guess

Anyways, we were wondering if a 6ys old Bay is too small for a 200lb person to ride? She is 15 1/2 hh...

Don't know alot about horses and their sizes so I guess we are asking if it is a larger horse or smaller for smaller people?

Thanks
     
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    07-14-2011, 01:34 AM
  #2
Showing
It really depends on a lot more than just her height. How much does she weigh? Is she fairly broad or seem really narrow? Are her legs and feet big and strong or small and twiggy? Is her back really long or shorter? Do you have pictures of the horse you would be willing to share?

Generally speaking, a horse can comfortably carry 20% of it's body weight, but a lot depends on the actual horse, their conformation and fitness level, and the rider's ability.

On the same sized horse, a 220 pound person who rides well will be easier on the horse's body than a 150 pound person who flops around like a sack of potatoes.

The same thing goes the other way too. If one horse is 15.2, narrow and leggy like a thoroughbred, then they wouldn't be able to carry as much as a wide, stocky quarter horse of the same height.
     
    07-14-2011, 01:41 AM
  #3
Green Broke
I probably shouldn't admit this, but I weight 200 lbs. And ride a 14.3 Mustang. I also used to own two Arabians that carried me fine (and I weighed more back then).

But the Mustang is built like a bulldog (around 1050 lbs.) and Arabians are very strong for their size.

Even my Foxtrotter mare, whom I consider a fairly decent sized horse, is only 15.1 and around 1100 lbs.

If I had a chance to own a well broke, larger horse though, it would make me feel like I wasn't so big on them.
     
    07-14-2011, 01:44 AM
  #4
Foal
Ooooh ok thanks.. I didn't know all that lol, but does make sense..

No, don't have a pic I can share right now cause it's just a horse we were thinking of getting but wanted to find out some info first!
     
    07-14-2011, 03:49 AM
  #5
Doe
Weanling
Though the comments above are true in that it does depend on the horse build etc, in general I would suggest a bigger (both taller and physically stocky) horse.
I do find a trend in the US for people who are too big riding too small horses. It shows in their feet and their loins and necks, and also results in a lot of the behavioural issues people later start asking about.

If you look at many of the old rules, there are many gauges. For example european cavalry riders were maxed at 140lbs, or else they couldn't be cavalry.
Modern horses in comparison are lighter boned and smaller footed which makes it worse.

In the UK 200 lbs would put you on a decent cob or even a hunter.
     
    07-14-2011, 04:02 AM
  #6
Trained
That's an interesting observation Doe, and one I wondered about when I lived in the UK. I agree that 'as a whole' people in the UK are more conservative over weights, but at the same time we have all those wonderful short stocky native ponies who are designed to carry full size adults, or in the case of the Highland Garron then a huge great dead stag down out of the hills.

Since I've lived out here I have become comfortable with the view of weight carrying out here. I've seen bigger people ride and compete and the horses manage well enough.

The small strong well built, short backed well sprung Quarter Horse is every bit as good a weight carrier as some of native ponies. I'm currently well over 200 pounds again but 15.1 hh of Mr G, grade Pintaloosa, who knows what's in the mix, carries me without missing a beat, he is just immensely strong.

Again it also depends what a person is doing, when I'm big I mainly trail ride, walking and jogging/trotting on mainly level ground, that is a lit less stressful on a horse than working in a school or jumping.
     
    07-14-2011, 05:01 AM
  #7
Doe
Weanling
Quote:
Originally Posted by Golden Horse    
That's an interesting observation Doe, and one I wondered about when I lived in the UK. I agree that 'as a whole' people in the UK are more conservative over weights, but at the same time we have all those wonderful short stocky native ponies who are designed to carry full size adults, or in the case of the Highland Garron then a huge great dead stag down out of the hills.

Since I've lived out here I have become comfortable with the view of weight carrying out here. I've seen bigger people ride and compete and the horses manage well enough.

The small strong well built, short backed well sprung Quarter Horse is every bit as good a weight carrier as some of native ponies. I'm currently well over 200 pounds again but 15.1 hh of Mr G, grade Pintaloosa, who knows what's in the mix, carries me without missing a beat, he is just immensely strong.

Again it also depends what a person is doing, when I'm big I mainly trail ride, walking and jogging/trotting on mainly level ground, that is a lit less stressful on a horse than working in a school or jumping.
Yes I agree it's a generalisation, and breeding definitely affects things as does what you are doing, trail versus reining or whatever. One of the things I did notice however is that (and I presume it's because QHs tend top be smaller) that some people of said weight were riding tiny welsh section b type ponies, thinking that it was the same thing!

Here in the Uk, not having the commonality of QHs, my QH is the second smallest adult horse on the yard of 57 horses. (excluding kids shetlands etc).
I know he is also in the smallest five within the total of the local 4 yards. Again, he is stronger I would argue than some of the 16.3 Tbs, but here with so much jumping and dressage so taller horses are more common. He always feels like a pony after working with every other bigger horse!
     
    07-14-2011, 05:54 AM
  #8
Foal
Our 15H. Gelding see pic on left carries my fat butt fine, the older I get the more I like the shorter (15 hh) over fred (16.1) or chet (16.2)... mostly I ride star who's 16h.... just make sure the horse is at your experience level if for the kid remember this good rule of thumb Horse's Age + Child's Age should equal at least 25

We had a haflinger that could carry any of us and she was only a 13 Hh horse (she would be offended with being called a pony)
     
    07-14-2011, 08:34 AM
  #9
Weanling
Ive seen 15 hand QH carry 200 pound men no problem. I think one of the big question about weight bearing for horses is rider experience. As said earlier in this post a person weighing quite more than they should but doing so on a horse well trained and themselves being well schooled can ride a small horse without little problem. Put a 200 pound person on a small horse that is well trained when the person knows nothing is a recipe for problems.

Studies have shown that smaller horses with wider loins are better at carrying larger weights but studies have also shown that when you increase weight above the 20 % you increase your horses heart rate and breathing as well as musce fatigue.

I think everyone should consider size when buying a horse, if you are 200 pounds and 6'you should make sure your horses height and weight match your size for esthetic reasons as well as the long term health of your horses back, legs and heart. A 15 2" horse weighing 1100 pounds would work fine for a 200 pound person. If your legs hang below your horses belly you need a bigger horse....imo
Unless you are over 6' and weigh 150 pounds which is rare.
     
    07-14-2011, 11:46 PM
  #10
Super Moderator
I now put riders on trail horses for a living. I have a published weight limit on my website and in my brochures of 250#. But, people lie -- a lot -- and know some of the riders I take out weigh over 300#.

I am currently keeping 20 trail horses. I try to have 3 or 4 that can carry the 300# riders without getting sore backs.

In my experience, a horse that is very deep in the heart-girth can carry a much heavier rider than one that is wide. I don't care if a horse is fairly narrow if it has good bone and feet and is really big in the girth. I like big withers and a short loin to go with it. I have one 15.3 h TB / Morgan cross gelding, that I have been putting big riders on for 9 years and he has never been sore.

The other big determining factor in my experience is how balanced a rider sits. A heavy rider that sits up over the inseams of their jeans is much easier on a horse than a lighter rider that sits in a 'chair seat' and wallows all over a horse's kidneys. That rider can sore a horse badly and only weigh 150 pounds.

Just the way it has worked for me.
     

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