01-02-2013, 06:01 PM
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I'm 5'5" and 150 lbs and although I wouldn't be considered fat by most I still felt extremely self conscious at Jumper shows. I showed a 16 hh Thoroughbred gelding that wasn't too small for me but that I felt made me look chunkier because he was so fine boned. So many of the riders are 115 lbs, thin and elegant looking. It became difficult for me to enjoy showing in that discipline. Although no one said anything to me I know I didn't fit in...
I stopped competing for 8 years and just recently started at it again...this time with a stocky QH and sorting cattle :) I love it. I feel no judgement and I feel comfortable in my skin and on my horse for once. I know it's not the same everywhere but I in the area I live in now the "showing" world, whether Western Pleasure or Hunter Jumper, there is so much attention to appearance that it's hard to feel comfortable with yourself if you don't fit the image. I'm truly enjoying competitions where your skill and your horses training/skills are the only things that matter and people respect you for that no matter what you look like.
That being said, I love to see the heavier riders racking up the ribbons because you know that it's because they are tremendous riders! My advice to you is to work your butt off and go out there and kick some! :)