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Even being a new rider, i find myself more comfortable riding bareback. i feel more stable and i just like the feeling much more. i like being closer to my horse, it just feels like i have more control actually. i trust my horse more than i trust myself i think lol. wondering if anyone else feels this way too? =) is there any thing wrong with always riding bareback? anyone have any tips on safety or anything?
 

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it is great for your seat to ride bareback, i find its more comfortable on some horses then others, but IMO its sorta important to ride bareback, haha it helps with balance so much! :D
 

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I ride bareback 99% of the time. I am more stable and I can feel what the horse is going to do even more. My favorite way to ride is bareback with only a halter.
 

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If you have a decent seat and a comfy horse then there is absolutly nothing wrong with riding bareback. It gives you a better feel of your horse and improves your riding. I unfortunatly have a very uncomfortable thoroughbred and must stick to the saddle.
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my quarter horse that im talking about it very comfy, my arabian on the other hand isn't quite the same. lol. i think i enjoy it because its more natural. i dont like to pile all that stuff on him. i like the way you can feel all the muscles move too. i need to invest in a saddle, but i honestly don't think it'll get much use. i have a cheap sythentic one that my parents bought but its junk anyway. i was just curious if its kinda of bad idea to only ride bareback being a new rider. but like i said, i feel safer and more in control without the saddle
 

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I totally agree with you! I've done dressage, jumping, and western style all my life but I feel the best bareback. You can tell if your horse will spook because you feel it. Actually, if you don't have a good fitting saddle, you will hurt your horse more by using it than going bareback. Some horse's get back aches so just watch out for that but otherwise it is great. (Just be sure you are wearing a helmet)
 

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PS I always stretch my horse's back muscles before and after a bareback ride. You use your four fingertips and rub under his belly then tap firmly along the middle line under his belly almost to his you-know-where :) It honestly loosens his back up. (but be careful at first because some horses don't like to be touched underneath)
 

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Good, I thought there was something wrong with me that I can sit a trot better bareback than in a saddle! I adore bareback, although my boy Hoover is about as bony in the back as I am in the bum. Half the time with Gun I'm just to lazy to tack, and he's so good with it. But I love riding our lesson horse Pappy about the best...he's like a Serta Perfect Sleeper Mattress on hooves. ^_^
 

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My 17 year old daughter loves to go out and just jump on her horse bareback with just a halter and lead rope and ride around the property. On nice days, they go to the creek and pond out back and play in the water together. She's been riding bareback for years. She does wear a helmet too. She's getting to where she can even do some low level jumps bareback. She loves it when horse shows have a bareback equitation class.
 

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I loveeee riding bareback! and like im not saying at all that you always shouldnt ride bareback but you know ride in a saddle every once and a while to keep improving your riding skills then you can do even more
 

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I love to ride bareback, but my mare has a spine that is like a saw!! I am looking for a thick pad to use untill she gets in shape and has some muscle on her to see if that helps. I never had "proper" riding lessons, it was just me and my friend playing around on her pony, usually without a saddle of any sort, so I am more used to bareback more than a saddle anyway. A big problem when I switched to a saddle is that I didn't keep enough weight in the stirrups and was bouncing everywhere!! LOL I've gotten alot better, but I seem to digress after riding bareback for awhile. Anyone else have this issue?
 

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Like the girl above me mentioned, if you've got a bony horse I'd invest in a bareback pad! Even if you don't have a bony horse, if you'll be on for hours on end or if you'll need some extra grip...they work well. I use one on a pony that I ride sometimes because we'll go for some long(3-5 hour) rides and I'm not quite used to bareback enough to not slide on steep inclines and declines. haha the pad helps with that and with my but not killing me.

But as for the initial question, no there's nothing wrong with riding bareback a lot. If you plan on showing with a saddle, you'll need to practice with a saddle beforehand to avoid the leg-swinging issues...and any other issue that may come about. I'd put a saddle on every now and then anyway just to make sure your horse doesn't get cranky about them.
 

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Good, I thought there was something wrong with me that I can sit a trot better bareback than in a saddle!
Me too!! I'm glad I'm not the only one! :lol: I even JUMP better bareback! haha And yes, I have gone trail riding bareback too, it all just depends on your level of comfort!
 

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haha now jumping, I would never be able to do bareback. I'm not even good at it WITH a saddle. :oops: ohhhh well.
 

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because i'm nimwitted and didn't know about saddle fitting i bought a saddle that is too big for my horse. so i usually ride bareback or i have another saddle that someone elses uses that fits my horse so i use it when he doesn't ride. i jumped for the first time bareback and i have fantastic grip and it was quite fun! i also grip better bareback and with a pad honestly. i bought one thinking maybe it would be more comfortable. but by then i was completely used to regular bareback. my horse spooked (bareback with no pad) she reared slightly. spun and ran full speed back to the barn. i didn't slip in the slightest. but when i used my barebackpad. and i was just galloping. i slid right off and ate dirt! so i feel much more safer and comfortable on her back rather than a pad. although saddle is nice. with a saddle i bounce around more than i do bareback!
 

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I go riding bareback down the trails all the time, I love it. Since trail riding is a way to get away from the ring with my horse, I find that riding bareback adds that little extra closeness to my horse and nature. The people that I go trail riding with all think Im crazy.

I would suggest that you get a nice comfy pad, especially if you go on longer rides, it will save your butt, and it will likely make your horse more comfortable too. If you are still a little unsure, or worry that your horse might come across something and spook then you may want to go with a pad that has those stirrups on it, or if you can afford it they have bareback pads that are made of memory foam and are super comfy. I would love to have one of those.
 

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I ride bareback pretty often. When I was younger and my seat was better from constant riding I rode bareback all the time. Now I've been riding in a saddle more often as I'm "spring training" Soda and my legs are weak.

The only caution I have is to beware of balancing yourself with your hands/arms. Especially if your legs/seat is weak. You end up doing more harm than good to yourself and your horse.
 
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