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SayiWont 10-29-2011 08:09 PM

Thinking About Switching to English- Questions
 
Just as the title states, I am looking into/thinking about switching over to English. I have ridden western all my life and; therefore, have a few questions.

1) How does riding English compare to western? Is it more difficult? How easy would it be to transition over? Do you absolutely have to take lessons? I previously took lessons (western) at a mainly English barn- I was the only western rider there. I took a few English lessons there as well- walking, troting, basic postion, two point.

2) Is Jeffries a good brand? If not, what are some other good brands to look for?

3) What size saddle would I need? I currently ride in a 15.5"-16" saddle.

4) Is black tack hard to come by? I am currently looking at a saddle that is black and would like to know if matching tack would be difficult to find.

5) What does monoflap mean?

6) Any advice? I would like to someday compete in jumping or eventing.


Thanks in advance,
Kara

horsemadgirl 10-29-2011 08:20 PM

1. English riding is a lot stricter than western but can make things a lot more comfortable and is a lot easier for you horse. The transition from Western to english isn't tricky but its a lot easier with lessons because other wise you might just end up with a bundle of the two..

2. I have personally never heard of Jeffries. Some of the most famous makes would Be: Shires, Harry Hall, Leonard Combes.

3. Its not necessarily the 'Size' of the saddle but the type. You would be better off investing in an English saddle. (no horn, more curved seat, high cantal)

4. Black leather tack is probably the most common colour of tack in English riding. You can find some here: (sorry some are in pounds and not dollars) Saddles Direct - Used Saddles, Dressage Saddles, Event Saddles, GP/VSD Saddles, Jumping Saddles, Pony Saddles, Showing Saddles, Side Saddles and More...

5. So the side of the saddle has two 'layer' the skirt and flap. The outside layer is really just a flap of leather with the Dey ring and the stirrup leathers and Stirrup leather holders. Lift up this flap and you will see another flap of leather which has the more delicate stuff on it. Knee roll, girth straps. Monoflap combines nearly everything into just one flap.

horsemadgirl 10-29-2011 08:22 PM

Sorry my answer just got cut short!

6. Keep your heels down and your stirrups short. Your stirrups should be at you ankle when you have you leg straight. Shoulders back and sit up straight (DONT SLOUCH) Keep a nice contact with your reins, you should always be able to 'feel' your horses mouth.

Good luck with English riding.. It really is great!

Ray MacDonald 10-29-2011 08:46 PM

1) How does riding English compare to western? Is it more difficult? How easy would it be to transition over? Do you absolutely have to take lessons? I previously took lessons (western) at a mainly English barn- I was the only western rider there. I took a few English lessons there as well- walking, troting, basic postion, two point.

-It isn't easier or harder. Just different. You still rely on seat, legs and more rein. It probably wont be to hard to transition. I would really advise getting lessons, English has a much different position than western. Lessons would be easier, than trying to learn by yourself.

2) Is Jeffries a good brand? If not, what are some other good brands to look for?

I'm not sure I have heard of Jefferies? I have heard of JeffersEquine.com...
But in saddles, Bates are very good quality, Wintec, Mondega and lots others.


3) What size saddle would I need? I currently ride in a 15.5"-16" saddle.

Probably a 16, it all depends on the style and brand as well as personal feel. English is a bit more tricky because it is more close contact.

4) Is black tack hard to come by? I am currently looking at a saddle that is black and would like to know if matching tack would be difficult to find.

Black tack is the more preferred color as well as the most common.

5) What does monoflap mean?

Not completely sure... I am thinking of a dressage saddle that would have one flap.

6) Any advice? I would like to someday compete in jumping or eventing

English is very fun! But as I said before, get someone experienced to teach you especially if you want to jump and do cross country.

And with a lot of things you get for what you pay for, cheap tack is just that... Cheap tack.

MoodIndigo 10-29-2011 08:48 PM

Other parts of the question have been answered, but

Yes, english is a lot harder than western. I've done both and I can say from expierience. But i would never trade it for the world :) I love to event and jump.


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