Foot Pain while riding

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Foot Pain while riding

This is a discussion on Foot Pain while riding within the Western Riding forums, part of the Riding Horses category
  • Numb toes whilst horse riding
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    06-26-2011, 12:31 AM
Foot Pain while riding

Hi I had a problem several years ago with the ball of my right foot causing me a lot of pain while riding, it got so bad I thought about not riding anymore. Then my horse developed some problems and couldn't be ridden anyway. When he passed away I purchased another horse and have had him for a little over a month. I have been riding using my husbands western saddle. The pain never came back so I assumed it was cured or it was a problem with my riding boots several years ago. My new horse bucked and refused to move one time and several people on the message board thought it might be related to pain from a bad fitting saddle. I had an experienced horse person tell me it fit but I wanted to be sure (and hubby needed his saddle back anyway) so today I got a new (used) saddle for my horse (had a saddle fitter who was visiting the area , help me with the fit). I went on a 2 hour trial ride tonight and my foot ached like a bad toothache. I don't know why it didn't with the other saddle but I can't ride like this. Any suggestions on what I can do to relieve this problem??
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    06-26-2011, 01:32 AM
Super Moderator
ON the ball of your foot? Very odd , isnt it? Perhaps you can look at the stirrups and see if you can't try to mimic the ones on his saddle.

OR, the new saddle puts you in a position where you are applying more pressure into the stirrup bottom. Are you more chair seated in the new saddle? Kind of bracing into the stirrup? Or is it the opposite; that the new saddle puts your legs straight down and that is harder?

I sometimes get pain on the bottome of my feet, or they go numb. More so in an English saddle. I put some soft get pads on them and this helped enormously! Wonder if that would help?
    06-26-2011, 08:54 AM
Yes it is kind of strange to get pain here, from what I have read most people who experience pain get it in their knees. The saddles appear to be made similar in regard to where the leg position is (my saddle is a circle y and hubbies is a big horn) and the stirrups are both wooden. I wonder if it is possible to put some kind of a gel pad on the stirrup or something. If it is the stirrups though wouldn't it cause pain to both feet?
    06-26-2011, 02:47 PM
Artemis, I have the same problem, only in my right foot and right on the ball, I'm sorry I don't have advice but I'm subbing so I can see what other people say.
    06-26-2011, 07:38 PM
Green Broke
Check the twist of the leather in the fenders, as your new saddle may be putting different torque on your legs.

And also measure the length of each stirrup, just because they are in same holes, doesn't mean they are the same length. It could be one is shorter/longer which is causing you to carry more weight, or brace yourself off of that foot.

And make sure your socks and jeans and even underwear are not twisted too, as that can press on nerves and cause your feet to hurt.

Have someone video you too, from the back especially, as it may be you are sitting crooked. Also look at where the stirrups hang on his saddle, compared to yours. That will add to pain felt while riding.

You might also need to go up a size in saddle, if you can, as that would move you further back and relax legs more.

To see if it is the saddle, ride his a couple of times, making sure boots/jeans/socks are same as when experiencing pain in your saddle. If you aren't hurting? Then it is the saddle, and while it may fit horse? It doesn't fit you.

Some saddles too, have a narrower twist in them, which is better for us women, because of the way our pelvic bones are. A wider twist will put strain on back, legs, feet, shoulders, you name it, as it is pushing legs further apart at crotch.

Get out a sewing tape measure and measure each saddle in the same area, and see what you get.
    06-28-2011, 11:28 PM
Sometimes it is simple as relaxing when you ride.
    06-28-2011, 11:56 PM
Artemisblossom, do you have this pain in the ball of your foot at any other time? This is where Morton's neuroma develops. Don't want to go into details here, just Google it. My mother and I both have it. She got it from constant pressure from playing tennis, and I got it from pressure from distance running and modern dance when I was younger. It is most pronounced in my right foot and does bother me when posting a trot. I find myself trying to adjust my foot in the stirrup all the time. It is very annoying. Nothing alleviates the pain once the nerve gets irritated. It feels like you are stepping on a rock. Sometimes it lasts for a couple of days, although it has never lasted that long from riding. Maybe that is what is going on with your foot pain?
    06-29-2011, 12:14 AM
No I don't get the pain in my foot at any other time. I went on a 2 hour trail ride sunday and it bothered me a lot and then all day Monday and most of the day today my right leg felt very tired and it was almost like I had siciatia or something it ached from my foot all the way up and into my buttock. I will research Morton's neuroma and see if sounds like that is what might be wrong.

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