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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everyone,I would like to get a horse eventually but I’m not sure what size my horse should be. I weigh 120 pounds on the dot,and I’m tall with long legs. Sooo... How big should my horse be?
 

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Hi Nubs...Welcome to the Forum!!

It is not how high but how is the horse built...
A smaller horse with a larger barrel, ribcage will take up the length of a long leg most riders like the feel of.
A horse with a rounder ribcage will also "fill", take up the space a long leg hanging shows.
I am 5'7" tall.
I have comfortably ridden everything from 14 hand to well-over 17 hand and had very similar leg coverage because of the animals build.
You are light in total weight so you have so many options to look at honestly

The only other difference I can tell you I found was a larger horse had a longer neck so it also covered the height of my upper body.
But, a animal built in proportion....you have a very large size range to choose from if you look for a horse with a "deeper heartgirth" {from top of back to underbelly} and a ribcage that is rounded more like a whiskey barrel not flat.
What you end up with though is going to be what you are comfortable sitting astride and having between your knees.
Happy shopping...you have so much to choose from.

ENJOY!!

:runninghorse2:...
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks everyone! It’s nice to know I don’t HAVE to have a horse a certain size,which opens up my options much more! I’m completely in love with a few horses at a horse rescue near me ranging from 14.2 to 17.3 hh and it kills that I can’t adopt one right now! Parents are pretty open to having a horse once I can drive and have a job to help pay for it!
 

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I have fairly long legs and ride a 16 h mare on the trails. My legs are long enough that I can get my toes in the stirrup and get myself back in the saddle if I get down out there on the trail and nothing to stand on. I wouldn't trade her for the world because she's a fun horse for me to ride. I don't think that I would want to go any higher than that though. I also ride a mare that is 14.3 and equally comfortable on her and i don't look ridiculous (as in too big for her).

You can ride any size horse that you want to. As you gain more experience, you will come to conclusions on what you have a preference for.
 
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Sometimes,. a person with really long legs on a too small horse will have their legs end up being well below the horse's rib cage, so it gets hard to affect the horse very well with a leg cue. That's when long spurs can come in handy.

But, I'm talking about tall men, riding 14.2 horses, like reiners. You can see their legs looking like they are seeking purchase on the ground!
 

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A 6'5" sheriff from Prescott used to ride this horse (late 1800s):

 

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A 6'5" sheriff from Prescott used to ride this horse (late 1800s):

This horse, Le Vizir, was ridden by Napoleon. Now, despite rumours, Napoleon actually was of above average male height for his time (average: 5'5", Napoleon: just shy of 5'7").

Look at this little squirt of an Arab! Aw!
 

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This horse, Le Vizir, was ridden by Napoleon. Now, despite rumours, Napoleon actually was of above average male height for his time (average: 5'5", Napoleon: just shy of 5'7").

Look at this little squirt of an Arab! Aw!

Too bad the taxidermy wasn't better back then. I know it's old, but I seriously don't think the taxidermy did the poor horse justice. Poor little guy!
 

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You know. Smart Little Lena was just 13.3!


Guess that's why the 'Little'? I have no idea how tall or big his rider was, but it looks like he could have hooked his feet together under his belly... and Smart Little Lena was one helluva cutting horse... and at only 13.3!? I think that's no bigger than Oops, our wee 3 year old filly!


 
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Sometimes,. a person with really long legs on a too small horse will have their legs end up being well below the horse's rib cage, so it gets hard to affect the horse very well with a leg cue. That's when long spurs can come in handy.

But, I'm talking about tall men, riding 14.2 horses, like reiners. You can see their legs looking like they are seeking purchase on the ground!
If you've ever seen contemporary portrayals of knights of the 10th to 15th centuries, you probably noticed that their legs extended way below the horse's barrel. It isn't a peculiarity of the artist either, because it's consistent regardless of the artist. They're all depicted that way, leading me to conclude that horses of the day were pretty darned small by our standards but nevertheless managed to carry men in full armor.
 

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"Analysis of existing horse armour located in the Royal Armouries indicates the equipment was originally worn by horses of 15 to 16 hands, or about the size and build of a modern field hunter or ordinary riding horse. Research undertaken at the Museum of London, using literary, pictorial and archaeological sources, supports military horses of 14 to 15 hands, distinguished from a riding horse by its strength and skill, rather than its size. This average does not seem to vary greatly across the medieval period....Three centuries later, warhorses were not significantly bigger; the Royal Armouries used a 15.2 hands Lithuanian Heavy Draught mare as a model for the statues displaying various 15th- and 16th-century horse armours, as her body shape was an excellent fit."


The armor and the saddle forced a very straight leg approach. Legs had limited mobility so long spurs were required.
 
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