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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Not sure if this is correct spot for this question but couldn't find another that was any closer...

I ride western and have never really had this problem until this year. At the end of a long ride my knees hurt so bad when I get off my horse I can barely stand up lol...I haven't rode as much this year due to getting a new home that needed lots of work and an new job but I surely wouldn't think I got that far out of shape that fast...I make sure im not putting pressure in my stirrups but still having issues with my knees. any ideas?
 

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Do you store your saddle with a pole through the stirrups to maintain the "twist" in them? if you don't use it for a long time, the twist can revert to the angle that puts a lot of stress on a human knee.
 

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First and foremost - proceed with caution. I have a thread in the "Rider Wellness" forum at this moment going, asking for advice on how to deal with torn ligaments in the knee. While mine was a freak accident in an English saddle, if I had taken the time to build my body and muscles up before riding, I could have avoided the problem. I tore seven ligaments, in each knee, at the exact same time. It was excruciatingly painful and it has kept me out of the saddle for two years(plus, as I still have to figure out how to get an MRI paid for and then physical therapy). So yeah. Proceed. With. Caution.

As for specific reasons regarding why your knees hurt - I'm not a doctor, I can't even see or feel your knees, and I don't have any guesses to offer you. I would say that you can fall out of *riding* shape relatively quickly. If you take two weeks out of the saddle, you can get saddle sore on your next ride, even if mildly. Your muscles will still exist, but if you don't use them they gradually go away.. especially if you're not using them as much as you used to. From experience, I'd tell you to start working on your core muscles, your buns and your thighs, and relative knee strength. (For me, it's apparently walking up stairs, without any professional input.) Swimming is a great way for an over-all body work out.

But, I'm not a doctor and my knowledge is limited. All I can really do for you is to tell you to follow the advice you do get and be careful not to get hurt. Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Do you store your saddle with a pole through the stirrups to maintain the "twist" in them? if you don't use it for a long time, the twist can revert to the angle that puts a lot of stress on a human knee.
the saddle is new, it's custom made with the stirrups turned but maybe not enough...this is my first new saddle, ill go out and put a broom through them now :D
 

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If the saddle is new I would say it's your saddle's fault :) twisting the stirrups would help. Honestly (though I ride English) that is sometimes a problem with specific people and saddles/stirrups but hopefully twisting them will help!
 

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You might try getting slanted/angled stirrups. Bad knees run in my family, my mom & I have both tried Crooked Stirrups & love them. I also have a hip that's a little messed up. These stirrups have allowed me to ride with little to no pain, it depends on if my hip is in or out at the time.
 

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I regularly ride 5 days a week, 45 minutes to an hour each time, and never have any knee pain then.

BUT if I'm riding on the trail, my knees start to hurt too! I've always wondered about this. The woman I trail ride with on occasion religiously goes once-twice a week and told me her knees get sore too. I wonder if it's just being in the sadde for 4 hours at a time that does me in.
 

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It is hard on my knees to stay in the same position for too long. I must let them out of the stirrups several times during a ride, especially if I am just walking, with no need to post.

I still lower myself VERY slowly to the ground---no more jumping down for me!!

Nancy
 

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just throwing a thought around since I tend to have sore knees too:

you said you make sure you aren't putting any pressure in the stirrups, does this mean you have been prone to pressing down with your feet in the past?

the reason I ask is I have to be conscientious of myself when riding as I will find myself locking my knees or pressing my legs down, even after I made not of it part way through the summer I catch myself doing it a few times a ride

so IF you are/were prone to riding defensively you might still be doing it and just not catching yourself when you arn't thinking about it
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
just throwing a thought around since I tend to have sore knees too:

you said you make sure you aren't putting any pressure in the stirrups, does this mean you have been prone to pressing down with your feet in the past?

the reason I ask is I have to be conscientious of myself when riding as I will find myself locking my knees or pressing my legs down, even after I made not of it part way through the summer I catch myself doing it a few times a ride

so IF you are/were prone to riding defensively you might still be doing it and just not catching yourself when you arn't thinking about it

Yes I am very bad about it...usually more so at the beginning of the season, my mare slurpee is a little green yet so sometimes instead of nicely stepping over the log we jump half way through or jump over the stream instead of walk...we always go back over and over making sure u do it nicely but I still get alittle tense :(...the mare I was on this weekend is bran new to me so I could of been and not realized...(my girl is nursing a hoof injury and is not ride able on steep rough country until next summer at the soonest :-( )
 

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One thing that will cause this is a saddle in which the stirrups are not hung correctly for that rider. I can ride one saddle and feel it pretty much, out of the saddles at the barn used for training. The others, all the same brand and style do not hurt, but the Bob Marshall is just not built right for me.

And have noticed it is the one always left on rack too, when all the others are pulled off. Out of 10 or more? That says trainers don't like it either.

Could also be your stirrups are not adjusted right, that you are not over your pelvis, or that you are "riding the saddle, not the horse".

Video? Picture of you mounted would help give a better idea.

Jeans may also be too tight, boots could be doing this? And you could need chiro for yourself too.
 

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My knees hurt after a trail ride also. Then I had a wonderful woman loan me her saddle. It was a Henry Miller saddle. It looked like a cross between a western/Australian saddle. We (hubby and I) bought two right away!! The stirrups were English leathers. Changing from the western hung stirrups to these English leathers was amazing..

Other than changing saddles I would suggest getting "stirrup turners" they are a metal piece you put between your stirrup and the leather on the saddle. it does what that pole in the stirrups does but does it better. Look in a good tack catalog for "stirrup turners" it really helped with my western saddle but my old age made my knees hurt even with them. good luck.. nothing worse than hurting knees after a ride!!

Rhonda
 

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one thing about stirup turners.... if you have a synthetic saddle they could be messing you up worse

i know a woman that just purchased an abetta and saleslady sold her turners too, big mistake


I will say if you are prone to putting pressure into your stirups look into some of the ones with padding just to help you a little bit
 
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