I don't agree with 10% but I do think weight matters to your horse's well being, as it should.
20% max and that includes saddle/blanket too is what I would be comfortable with. Which puts me perilously close on my two, if not over.
And tired of hearing people say "my horse is not bothered by my weight" when they have not had horse vetted so specifically look into any changes due to heavy rider, chiro out or massages done.
Or worse, someone that has to have chiro/massage therapy done on horse monthly.
And coming at this from being 229 lbs myself too...so not thin by any means.
When we are now looking at hospitals having to have extra wide wheelchairs, bathrooms having to put in toilets designed to not break under heavier people, ambulances having to put in heavy duty cots to carry patients as well as furniture makes having to make furniture for heavy people, office chairs too, it is foolish to think that our weight, if heavy riders, does not have a toll on our horse's well being.
As well as it does on us as riders.
Those of us who carry our weight mostly in our thighs/hips/lower legs are not having as good a contact as we would if we were thin. No way around that.
We sit on our pelvic bones differently, close our legs on our horse differently, and ride differently. The extra body fat ensures that.
And when we ride? We are not draped the length of the horse so that at least some of our weight is over the fore and hind legs either, it is on the span of the back only.
It is also hard on our saddles, particularly if we do not, as we widen, get a bigger seat. I see far too many heavy riders who have no cantle or pommel showing at all under their body....the only way you know they have a saddle under them is there are stirrups.
And the saddle not fitting? Means their mechanics are going to be off too.
As well as if someone is riding English of any style and posting the trot? You have an extremely hard time rising to that trot if you are heavy with the result that you are in your horse's mouth, using the reins to haul yourself out of the saddle.
And the horses are desperately unhappy too. Pinned ears, wringing tails, set mouth to keep from being yanked on, I see these horses and wonder how it is that their owners can not see what is so apparent to anyone else that sees them?
Horses are living creatures, capable of feeling pain, and like it or not, people need to be more insightful as to what they are doing to their horses.
To pretend our weight does not have an impact is fooling ourselves.
And I find it sad when no one that is overweight is usually willing to consider it being a factor to their horse's well being.
Horses make me a better person.
Last edited by Palomine; 07-09-2013 at 04:38 PM.