Trail Riding Saddled or Bareback? - Page 4
 
 

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Trail Riding Saddled or Bareback?

This is a discussion on Trail Riding Saddled or Bareback? within the Trail Riding forums, part of the Riding Horses category
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    06-28-2008, 08:42 PM
  #31
Started
Well I would love to ride bareback, as I have never done it before, but saddled or bareback, either one goes for me!
     
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    06-28-2008, 11:18 PM
  #32
Weanling
Abby,
I do enjoy the feeling of being bareback as well. I disagree that a saddle is THAT much of a hindrance that they can't enjoy the ride with one -as long as it FITS the horse and is properly adjusted. If they are used to the saddle, they probably aren't burdened by it because the muscles are accostomed to it,and if bareback isn't a common experience, then you might actually make them more tired as it's using them in a different way.
And a cinch doesn't go around the belly where the diaphram expands, it would be akin to being just under your armpits or wearing a bra, which doesn't affect MY breathing, because it's above the diaphram as well. And really, the cinch shouldn't be THAT tight anyways. It's just another tool they are used to, like us wearing clothes. Yes, more constrictive than naked, but tolerable enough to be able to work and not resent the clothes.
And while you can fell the horse's tenseness more easily, they feel yours, too and that can be a lose/lose situation, just depends on the horse and rider. Some riders wouldn't benefit from feeling the horse tense up-they would be too reactive.
Another note, my horses have to WORK for me, but they still come up like dogs to the gate when I want to catch them. I don't think that you have to strip all tack for them to enjoy a break in routine and that they would resent you for making them wear a saddle instead of bareback riding. They don't get irritated at the saddle being cinched, etc.
I feel a saddle (for most, maybe not ALL riders) does provide more stablity and you are less apt to sore your horse's back (with a PROPERLY FITTED AND ADJUSTED SADDLE) than riding for a long time bareback, as you are more apt to slip back bareback, and the more scooting around you do, the more your horse has to adjust to compensate. (Ever carry a toddler for a piggy back ride? Compare that to carrying a backpack-which is easier?), at least for long periods. Like I said, I like a good bareback ride now and again, and it does improve your balance, I just can't help but feel that saddled IS safer and more secure outside the confines of home pastures and pens. If you wouldn't feel more secure bareback while jumping/barrel racing, reining, etc, then how can you really be more secure while trail riding?
Just a difference of views, but I respectfully and amicably disagree that a saddled ride ruins the horse's perception of you or enjoyment of the ride.
     
    06-29-2008, 12:42 AM
  #33
Foal
Personally, I love riding bareback
But like other people have said, it depends on your horse. I also find it depends on your surroundings, ie what kind of hazards there are on trails like if theres cars and stuff...
I would also keep practising at home in the arena wihtout a saddle, just to make sure its really easy to control your horse when you're riding bareback.
But the horse I owned in germany, I rode her bareback all the time, and I jumped with her bareback and everything, and so my mum didnt mind if I took her for short trails bareback =]
One of my horses here, doccy, I rode him bareback around our paddocks all the time, but always with a saddle whne I went out. But then after a couple of months when he knew the area really well and he wasnt scared of the train or anything anymore, I took him out bareback a couple times. It was awesome

So yeah, I don't reckon that you can generalise it- whether you should ride out bareback or not depends on you, your horse and your environment
     
    06-29-2008, 12:54 AM
  #34
Yearling
I am so glad you responded barefoot. I was hoping for some constructive polite disagreement with me. :) I know it sounds silly, but I WANT other views because I may not be aware. I do agree with you though, believe it or not.

The original reason I ride bareback are because I am not 100% positive I have properly fitted tack, so I started riding bareback until I could find the right saddle... then I got hooked+. My horse is ridden bareback, all the time, and hadn't been ridden for about four months before I bought him. I have not really ridden him in a saddle but once since I bought him. I do agree that when being ridden bareback, a horse that is not used to that, should not be put to work like they would saddled, at least not without conditioning. Work, fifteen minutes a day bareback for a while, then twenty, then a half hour, then 45 minutes, then a full hour a day bareback until that is your primary if that is how you want it to be. That is how I conditioned him.

I do agree that bareback is NOT for everyone. As much as I advocate bareback riding, my old horse could NOT be ridden bareback, nor could he be ridden saddled. He was very difficult. If he was saddled, he would buck. He was a very spooky horse though, and often spooked so bad, bareback was nearly impossible, however, that horse taught me true balance between a horse and rider through any and all situation.

I do jump bareback, but not very often. Lucky's a lugger, and he's not real jumping material but I do it for fun. Dixie is more of a jumper, but she's got high withers making it painful if your not careful when landing.

I do show, and I do ask work from him too. I just don't show in anything but bareback classes. It truly is a matter of preference. Horse back riding is dangerous, no matter what you do. Walking into the pasture to catch your horse is dangerous. This post isn't about dangers though, its about preference. I DO agree that if I were to every trailer my horse to a new location, and trail ride, I WILL ride him in a saddle. I still lunge him with a saddle on a few times a week, and maybe one a week, sometimes every two weeks I take him through the ropes, a few times around walk trot canter saddled and then go about the rest of my ride bareback. I only do that in case I were to need it for company, I don't want him to act up because he's got a saddle on. Other than that, I do not use one.

As for cinches, to they do not need to be tight and I agree with that. I keep my cinches only tight enough to let me mount and that's it. I think people way over tighten. I am concerned for my horses well being, and mine. I may over do it by not riding with a saddle because I think it makes him uncomfortable, but saddles make ME uncomfortable too. Riding is supposed to be fun, and for me, its hard to have fun when your not comfortable. :)

Edited for spelling
     
    06-29-2008, 10:50 AM
  #35
Yearling
I would have to go with saddled...safety reasons are a concern...but mostly because my trail rides are over an hour long...and who wants sweaty bareback horse butt...that stuff permanently stains jeans.
     
    06-29-2008, 03:25 PM
  #36
Weanling
Good, I'm glad you didn't take offense at my opinion, sometimes it's hard to convey things in writing and I sure wasnt' trying to step on any toes, just give an opinion.

And I have to agree about enjoying bareback, I do love it, but as someone else just pointed out...that sweaty, hairy butt just isnt' fashionable when you stop at the gas staition to get a soda. LOL
     
    06-29-2008, 03:43 PM
  #37
Yearling
Oh the horror stories. I do agree that having your breeches covered in horse hair, and sweat stains isn't exactly attractive. I went ahead and bought a pair in black, hopefully that will mask the sweat at least.... as for the hair? He's a Bay so no luck there.

I think its hard to write with tone of voice, at least there is smiley faces to show we mean things lightly. 8)
     
    06-30-2008, 07:50 PM
  #38
Yearling
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brandon
Abby, I would say it depends on the horse. I think barebackin without a saddle is fine as long as you take in consideration that anythin can happen on the trail and that you are more likely to fall off of the horse than if you where in a saddle.

I think ridin bareback is fun, but lol abit painful...
that's why I love my belgian/qh he's sooooo round its almost like he has no wither . . . Its like riding a beanbag chair :)
     

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