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Old 12-31-2009, 08:18 PM   #21
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I don't think a lot of you posting are plus size, I think you're just tall! lol. I'm only 5'0 and I'm not what I would consider plus size,but I would like to lose about 15 pounds, but it's hard when you're short--you guys shouldn't feel bad, love those long legs you can use for posting--I look like a bug on my horse!lol
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Old 12-31-2009, 08:28 PM   #22
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its how you sit

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Originally Posted by madel_equestrian View Post
People can be awfully unfair and don't stop to think before they open their big mouths. It is normal to see a male rider reach 200+ lbs easily on their larger frame and no one says a thing even though pound for pound it is the exact same! My view is that so long as you have proper body condition to ride balanced on your horse (i.e. even a small rider who is bouncing uncontrollable would hurt a horse's spine) then there is NO reason why a properly chosen horse shouldn't carry your weight with NO problem! If someone of ANY size is having trouble keeping their balance on their horse and keeping their weight off the spine then they need to go back to some strength building exercises on the ground, but most "bootylicious" riders have very good core muscles!

I am a male. I am 5'9" and right now go at 210# but I am not fat....wear 32/30 jeans and xxl shirts. I ride a 15.3 QH and a 14.3 Mustang.
My good friend is a well known trainer in this area and he is 6'4" and I know goes atleast 275# he is two of me. He rides many horses from 13.0 to whatever 17.0 hands high......
we both ride in 16" seat western style saddles........I have a 17" saddle too. It is for bigger drafty horses I might ride. I did not buy it for the seat size but the fit on the horses. As much as I use it seat size is not an issue. I typically do not fool with draft horses but do on occasion now that my good friend has one....I find it is a bit awkward and I set back too far....my opinion....I ride a 17" english for foxhunting.......
Your weight dispersion on the horse depends on whether or not it is bad for the horse........do you sit on your horse like a ton of bricks or do you ride light in the saddle and balanced......in rythym to your horses movements......do sit and lean to one side because you do not have the conditioning to properly sit your horse? I would have to say that is the most important factor for how bad your weight is on a horse.
The saddle spreads the weight out over the horses back. If it properly fits...with that theory in place then bareback riding your horse would be worse the more you weigh or the less you are balanced and in tune to the rythym of the horse.........
buy a ball that is like an exercise ball that you sit on. you can use this to help fine tune your balance and your muscles to help you with balance while riding the horse. About 36" to 48" around the diameter...
Your horse will love this ball too if you properly teach him how to play with it and not let him be afraid of it...lots of fun to watch and play with.....
with that said...............you will be a better rider and person to your horse.....screw those other people.........let them watch you from the fence they are riding as you ride off happy on your horse.......


oh yeah I should have read this post more as I just did........it says allot of what I just said........

Last edited by NoShoes4Horses; 12-31-2009 at 08:31 PM.
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Old 12-31-2009, 08:47 PM   #23
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I am tall but a size 18 *is* plus size. I wear a size 16 in some pants but 18 in most. I should be about a size 16 but I gained some weight when I stopped riding in August.

I somehow managed to maintain most of my core muscles when I quit 5 years ago and when I got back into riding in June it only took a couple lessons before I wasn't hurting like I'd just been run over by a car LOL.
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Old 12-31-2009, 10:18 PM   #24
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my very first horse was 14.3hd mix breed horse and i am a size 18 and i was at a show were this girl was probly a size 2 on a 16hd QH horse and she said somthing like omg that girl is to fat to ride that horse well lets just say i placed well and she didnt so after our class i looked at her and said i think were just fine together thank you for being so worried about us i. my goal is to be a size 12 or 14 but my parents our a big frame so i know i am not going to be a size 2 and i am fine with that.
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Old 12-31-2009, 10:27 PM   #25
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Despite the biting tongues there are a few issues with overweight riders that must be considered. Fat deposits on the inside of the knees can prevent a rider from having a nice long leg on a horse and this can be a safety issue. Also, too much junk in the trunk means one can't properly sit in the deepest part of the saddle. It can also cause too much rearward pressure possibly resulting in the horse getting a sore back. Distribution of the rider's weight in the saddle can have a bearing on the horse's comfort as saddles are not designed for the obese rider. The bars on a saddle have limits on length without losing strength.
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Old 12-31-2009, 10:54 PM   #26
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I have to say Slim, I'm a little offended. I'm not obese, I'm 'chubby'. For my height and bone structure I'm probably 20-30lbs overweight. At the most 40lbs. I muscle up nicely when riding and I have good balance and sit light in the saddle. I'm a competant larger rider and I choose bulkier/chunky horses not only because of my size but because I like the look and stability of a beefy horse more than something with a build like a TB.

What about thin riders that just flail around in the saddle? I've known my fair share of "average" riders who can't keep their seat and bounce around on the back of the animal.

I am able to keep a nice long leg and I can't see how fat deposits would hinder anyone unless you were quite close to being morbidly obese where your legs would have so much fat on the inside that doing much would be difficult.

That said, once a lady came to our barn who knew my coach, she was probably around 300+lbs, got on my gelding (Haflinger/Belgian X, very beefy...) and he literally collapsed. I was furious to say the least. None of my horses have ever had back problems or soreness with me riding, not even my TB mare.
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Old 12-31-2009, 11:03 PM   #27
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I also am a little baffled on what you said slim-pikkens. and you are very right s-mylie i am a much better rider than some of the other skinny women at my barn and we have all been riding the same amount of years.
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Old 12-31-2009, 11:44 PM   #28
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I do want to lose weight, to feel better,and I think that I will be a better rider once my CORE is stronger, for sure. But--what's more important to my horse I think is that I have learned to balance and carry myself, no matter what my weight
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Old 01-01-2010, 12:48 AM   #29
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S-My- I am the exact same size as you and I havent ridden in a while as I dont have my own horse, but my trainer , when I was riding, said I had the best jump form she had seen in a long time and she was training YOUNG GIRLS who aint got NO fluffy anywhere and their parents could afford all kinds of training so.. that being said.. I think I had awesome form, granted I had a hard time getting into the saddle from the ground.. (thank goodness for mounting blocks) but I dont have fat legs - and I think I can grip a lot better then some of those skinny girls whose legs will be hurting since their bones aint INSULATED like mine are..

I plan on losing weight for health reasons anyways.. but.. I do belive I can ride just fine.. and since I am a little taller 5'9" I am distributed quite nicely .. I just have LOOONG legs so I do look a lil silly riding anything under 15 hands.. ( THINK CIRCUS CLOWN AN PONY).... but.. I cant wait to have my own horse that I can just HOP on and go.. ( LIKE RM! she's my hero!)
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Old 01-01-2010, 07:47 AM   #30
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I too am a plus size rider. I'm 5'7" and currently wiegh 195(in the summer I was at 215) and wear a size 13 jean, I used to have a hard time finding clothes and riding stuff to fit me but not anymore.
The horses I prefer to ride are all over 15.1hh and stocky built but I have ridden 14.3hh and smaller and the horses carried me fine. At work now we have a 13.3-14hh quarter horse welsh pony I ride(not that I like to but seeing as I'm the only one working there I'm the only person to work him) he's not stocky but he carries me fine, granted I don't ride him long or hard about 30 mins tops and put him through his paces, I've been asked to jump him but with him being small I don't feel comfortable putting that extra strain on his legs. My own mare is a 15.3hh quarter horse with a stocky build.
In the past few years I haven't had anyone comment on my wieght when it comes to riding(atleast not to my face)but in the past when I boarded at large barns and took lessons I would hear comments about it. I even went for a trial at a barn I wanted to work at and they told me I was to big to work there and to heavey to be able to get on a horse myself without someone helping me up(I mount from the ground perfectly fine on my own I've seen thin..or average sized people try to get up from the ground and couldn't)

a few pics

Me on Cricket(my mare)

these ones are from the summer




And me riding my friends horse



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Old 01-01-2010, 10:13 AM   #31
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I know RM, but to me it's like she's bringing up a size consideration that none of us clearly are. Discussing the affects of riding if you're quite close to being morbidly obese has nothing to do with a few fluffy/chubby people with the largest thus far at a size 18.


And my point being it's not just chubby/fluffy people that have to work on core muscles (or not!) and have balance/coordination issues on the back of a horse which could result in soreness in the horses spine but it's also the thin and average rider. IMO there are far more thin or average riders that just flop about than larger riders. At least from what I've seen.
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Old 01-01-2010, 11:15 AM   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by s-mylie View Post
IMO there are far more thin or average riders that just flop about than larger riders. At least from what I've seen.

As a thin rider I must admit I resemble that acusation!

But really I agree I have always envied larger riders who always seem to be stronger and more flexable than I; thus moving better with the horse. I'm 5'4" 130lbs and sooo not flexable! Size has nothing to do with ability on horseback!
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Old 01-01-2010, 11:44 AM   #33
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I, too, am a fluffy rider, 5'10+" and 225. I ride everything from 13.2 to 17.2 with very little problems. i have more flexibility then a friend of mine that;s 5'8" and weighs maybe 145, tall, long legs,etc. and has a real problem just mounting!! So, yes, the riders balance and flexibility in the saddle is key.

I've given lessons to every shape, size, and age rider, with a few skinny riders that just killed my lesson horse!! I happen to use a 13.2h Halfie for lessons now and I've trail ridden him for 3 hours with no issues.
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Old 01-01-2010, 12:14 PM   #34
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S_mylie, in the latest edition of Equine there is a pic of a rider on an Irish Draught horse (the article was featuring the breed) who looks a lot like you. Not for a nanosecond did I think she looked big, too big, disproportionate on a horse, etc. It wasn't until I saw your pic and went back to look at the article did the size issue occur to me.

You are not, in my opinion, a large person. I think it depends on the circles you hang out in. We all know of already skinny kids who are told they are too big for gymnastics, dancing,etc.

I am not plus sized, but I am 4 kids fatter and 20 years older than I was as a self-conscious skinny teen. I am more confident now than I was then. My motto is that at a point where others make me feel bad about who I am, the "others" have to go. Now, if they are part and parcel of the equine world you want to be a part of, then it can be a difficulty. Are you comfortable with saying, "Quit making me feel bad about who I am!"? Sometimes people don't know how acerbic they are till it's pointed out to them. People who act like others owe it to them to look different oughta be horse-whipped.
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Old 01-01-2010, 12:24 PM   #35
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Bah, try finding boots and stuff when you are a size 16 jean, with 20 inch calves...curvy heavily muscled chicks get no where, even in a non fat condition, ( not currently mind, have a way to go yet) I still weigh off the **** insurance charts, really fit I am about 185-190 and I am 5'6..I think I am descended from draft humans, or something out of Tolkien

Kerrets breaches fit pretty darn well once I get them over the calves, I have found some plus half chaps that are nice, but I still have to have them taken in, as I have perfectly normal ankles Shirts are a darn nightmare, fitting the girls in, plus the farm girl arms it equal overly large floppy shirt.

I have been looking at those muck boot "brit riders" but I would most likely have to slice the boot up the back to fit the leg in, it is what I have to do with my wellies

one can be "big" with out being fat or fluffy, and it took years to realize that no matter how I starved myself I would never ever fit those da*m health charts. Honestly to heck with it...just go ride
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Old 01-01-2010, 12:46 PM   #36
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beez I'm right there with you with the calves! I so know your pain there, finding boots is a royal pain in the butt! Also I fill jeans my calves are so big it just sucks.
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Old 01-01-2010, 01:04 PM   #37
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Check Tex Tan and Circle Y on e-bay----they all come in 17"
My horses range in size from 14.3 to 16.0 and I can ride all of them and look good (they do have foundation bloodlines and the others are "stocky", but that's the type of horse I like). I took lessons and nobody made a comment. I am a member of a saddle club (trail riding) and pretty much everyone is a bit "hefty". Find a different barn and better people to hang around---who needs the grief and smartmouthiness? Enjoy riding!
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Old 01-01-2010, 01:57 PM   #38
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I too am a plus sizer rider. I am a reiner and ride in a 17.5" Bobs Custom Saddle, Duane Latimar style. I have yet to have anyone comment on my weight, however, if one were to, I have a fist too!! All my weight came from pregnancies as well. Now I have just gone on Weight Watchers, we'll see how that goes. But if anyone comments on your weight, they are alikly some what threatened by you or feel poorly about themselves.
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Old 01-01-2010, 04:35 PM   #39
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Just thought I'd post these

A better photo of Pal, he was probably 15 years old here. He looks kind of down in the dumps but that's cause he just got his shots AND run around by an evil little Shetland pony we owned for a VERY short period LOL. Pal was overweight when we got Cujo and fit when he left hahahaha. He unfortunately had awful front feet, he was flat footed with no heel.



That summer was probably the last time I seriously rode him. At that point I was in grade 9 and weighed about 175lbs. By the time I saw him the last time (he was shipped out west to live with my coach who moved) I weighed approx. 240lbs! See what quitting riding does to you?! Even at 175lbs I was only 5'9" and due to my bone structure I was about a size 16. When I ride I'm hecka muscular and I've just about accepted I'll always be a size 16, and I love it.

And THIS GUY was my 'next step' from Pal. Gee was a Perch/Paint X and we ended up selling him, he was probably 2 1/2 here, he was like Mylie (my Palo girl) in the sense that he was unapproachable when we got him. 4 cowboys had to wrangle him into the barn with about 15 leadropes attached in various places LOL He fought the whole darn way. At this point he was just about to be backed. I just didn't feel comfortable around him, he was pushing 16.2hh at 3 years old .

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Old 01-01-2010, 05:33 PM   #40
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Well I am 5'6, wear about a 18 or 20, and weigh in at 225 most days. My main riding horse is a fairly refined SER arab mare who comes in at 14.1 maybe 14.2. She carries me fine all day long! I ride in a treeless sports saddle that is 15".. wish it was another inch bigger but i make do.
I rode in a 16" hunt courbette saddle and a 16" abetta western saddle for most of my years. (been this size for a long time! lol).

I think the biggest thing.. is HOW you ride a your horse. A 100lb crappy rider will do more damage to a horse's back and attitude then a 225lb well balanaced rider.

I've done 3- 25 mile endurance ride on a 850lb 14.3hh arab gelding. barefoot and he always came in sound at the vet checks. He is actually more sensitive along his back Before riding then after (he is just tense until he has been moving for a bit).

I ahve never had anyone try to give me a snotty, holier then though attitude on my weight. I do know how to use my size to my advantage when needed..

And I always found it to my advantage in case my horse takes exception to scary things.. like white rocks...

I am big, I am lovely and my horse loves me!

as i take all my own pics its hard to find some of me ON my horse! lol
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