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Old 12-29-2005, 08:43 PM  
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Australian stock saddle -- style of riding?

One of my horse purchase prospects comes with an Australian stock saddle. This is a style of riding that interests me -- I've done quite a bit of Western pleasure riding, and am currently riding English, so a stock saddle seems a good compromise, especially for trail riding.

I found a good article about the genesis of the Aussie saddle (http://www.aussiesaddle.com/why_aussie_saddle.htm), but I'm curious if any of you know what style of bridle/bit/reining is customary for this kind of saddle.

Because of the British Empire connections (the whole colonial thing, don'tcha know) I imagine that one would use a snaffle bridle/bit with direct reining, but don't know for sure.

Anyone in Horsetopia-land have any Aussie stock saddle riding experience?
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Old 12-29-2005, 08:49 PM  
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Well, from what I know, and all the movies (ie Man from Snowy River), they use a direct rein and snaffles similar to our english bridles - an actual australian stock bridle looks a little differant, you can find them in places that offer Aussie tack and supplies.

And I love an Aussie for trail riding - more security than my english saddle, but not all the bulk of a western saddle. Some people don't like the overgirth though - it does take some getting used to.
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Old 12-29-2005, 08:54 PM  
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The Aussies ride in much the same style as our cowboys do but with an english flair. They generally ride in a snaffle bit but mainly neck rein like we do with a curb. They use their other hand for their stock whip like we would for a rope. But like anything else especially if you're just trail riding whatever style you feel most comfortable in. Whatever bit/reining technique works best for your horse and you.
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Old 12-29-2005, 09:08 PM  
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That's very useful information AJ and beth -- thank you! AJ -- forgive my ignorance, which is truly vast, but what is an overgirth?
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Old 12-29-2005, 09:11 PM  
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It's a second girth that runs over the seat of the saddle. It helps to secure the saddle to the horse. All Australian made saddles I've seen have all had them but many American made Aussies have not. You would also see them on racing saddles. They can be uncomfortable because they can pinch skin in places that are rather tender.
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Old 01-04-2006, 10:46 AM  
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I have a Aussie saddle that I wouldn't trade for any other saddle.
Great web site for Aussie stuff is http://www.kates.net/cart/customer/home.php

As far as bits go I use what I've got. I believe though that snaffle and "broken" bits are more popular.

Be careful though, the sizing is different than western or english saddles; the above web site explains the difference. I prefer the Aussie saddles WITHOUT the horn as there can be a tendency to hit the horn when posting...and believe me that's PAIN, and I'm a woman !
Aussie saddles are great for trail riding because they are soooo comfortable. They also stay put on the horse better because of their cinching system. And they are a great choice for younger horses who haven't filled out in their withers yet.

Caution...they aren't made for wide withers! I had to have one custom made to one of my bigger QH mares once.

The knee rolls are awesome. They really keep you stuck in the saddle. I use mine when starting new horses.

hope you enjoy yours
Annie
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Old 01-04-2006, 10:50 AM  
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They can be uncomfortable because they can pinch skin in places that are rather tender.
As long as the saddle is well made it shouldn't pinch. I bought a cheaper one once thinking "what's the difference" ...well lets just say I found the difference! Of couse mine is old and well used so maybe that is something that helps make it more comfy .

Annie
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Old 01-04-2006, 01:32 PM  
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Personally Im not a fan of the aussie saddle. The one Ive ridden/used was nice looking, but so HEAVY! Not sure if it was the way it was made or what but I always seemed a little forward, not to mention my butt hurt after only 10minutes at the walk!

I think a nice snaffle bridle would work fine, but if you can get an aussie bridle, that would be great too!

Brittany
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Old 01-04-2006, 01:41 PM  
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Aussie riding is done mostly direct reining, but the majority do neck rein as well, due to Aussie's and their bull whips etc. Aussie bridles are a bit thicker and not as elegant as an English bridle but they serve their purpose. I'd use a broken mouth bit like shotgun said, O ring snaffle, Tom thumb something along that lines.
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Old 01-04-2006, 02:19 PM  
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Thanks for all the information!

That's a good website, shotgun -- and I'd tend to want one without the horn, just because it looks more ... Englishy ... I guess. Sounds like there's a practical reason, too!

Frontier Saddlery has some interesting looking saddles in wide and extra wide widths -- and some of their Aussie saddles come in wide widths.

http://www.frontierequestrian.com/ge...cfm?CatList=14
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Old 01-04-2006, 03:33 PM  
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I have an aussie saddle which is really comfortable, but I dont care much for the over girth. It is hard to tack up. I recently bought a cross over saddle. Much lighter, has western style rigging. It very comfortable and very nice for trail riding. It looks similar to this one. http://www.jtidist.com/proddetail.ph...AS300V&cat=288
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Old 01-04-2006, 04:19 PM  
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That cross over saddle looks interesting, reba4 -- thanks for the link.
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Old 01-05-2006, 07:09 AM  
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This is an interesting thread, once Stormy gets done growing (4 or 5 years down the road!) I plan to have saved up enough to get a custom Aussie saddle for him and me. I have looked at a few web sites and there's such a difference on price and can be such a difference on styles, it's going to be hard for me to decide what I want when the time comes. Most everyone I've heard of having one though, wouldn't trade for the world for trail riding anyway.
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Old 01-05-2006, 07:33 AM  
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Not sure if it was the way it was made or what but I always seemed a little forward, not to mention my butt hurt after only 10minutes at the walk!
Here's a good web page on how the Aussie saddle should sit on the horse properly.http://www.kates.net/cart/customer/pages.php?pageid=21
It was very helpful to me to get the correct placement. Otherwise its possible to feel like you are tipping forwards or backwards.
I solved the tipping forward problem with a front lift pad between the withers and the gullet. However fixing the backwards tipping can be more difficault as it means the gullet is too narrow and that could lead to pinching problems but you could try useing a riser pad made for english saddles, just get the large size. Once you've achieved the correct placement they are very comfortable.
Good Luck
Annie
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Old 02-20-2006, 10:15 PM  
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I LOVED my aussie when I had it. But it was so heavy I ended up selling it. I'm heavy enough without my horses hauling around another 50lbs.
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Old 02-24-2006, 07:39 PM  
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Another thought

Just another thought on the Aussie saddle topic. A little late, but hey! I'm new. Eons ago, I rode a little Arab in an Aussie saddle, all over the place. I also loved mine. But one thing you will notice when riding (& maybe only when you see a picture of yourself in it) is your legs are in a different position than your western or english type saddles. The leg position in an Aussie is more forward. I was adjusted to that pitching and then started formal Dressage lessons. What a change!! Good luck in your quest and enjoy your Aussie.[/img]
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