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« Helping the birds | Main | More cavalry »

March 12, 2012

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jess

Ah yes the old wool army blanket. Ours were looking terrible by the time we finished with the business - but they were incredible, there is something to be said for natural fibres over the modern sythnetic blankets. Fibres that soak up sweat and yet still breathe. We never had problems with rubbing, even riding the horses up to 50 km a day and all our horses had these woolen rugs.

White Horse Pilgrim

Same here. I did use fleeces too for a while, however they weren't so good in hot weather. No, the simplest thing - a good army blanket - is the best. I saw barely a rub in eight years (one, I think, thanks to the most imbalanced rider) and that said a lot. It amazes me that everyone over here uses synthetic stuff - through habit and nice packaging I suppose.

jess

yeah - and the fact they dont do long distances. I think its the same with saddle fit. You can by with an ok fitting saddle if your riding is a couple of 30 min schooling sessions and a hour trail ride every now and then - but you will quickly see problems as soon as you start riding more than that. The synthetic fleece doesnt breathe, so quickly causes excessive sweating,,and then rubs. Ahhhh the old days :)

White Horse Pilgrim

One can get by with short rides using a saddle that doesn't fit particularly well, wondering why ones horse doesn't behave too well under saddle and probably forking out a pile of money for lessons.

It's odd how few riders want to do long trips. Attempts to organise a trail riding weekend for the riding club have turned up only a handful of participants. Three hours at a time is too much for the majority, even in great terrain for easy but interesting excursions. My goodness most riders are soft these days. And the arena riders are all too often disparaging of trail riders because the latter don't win things.

I was looking at a friend's saddle as she rode, and was struck by how much the cantle moved about from side to side. It was enough that a rub had occured behind the bearing surface where the back of the saddle cloth lay. She's a balanced rider and the saddle has been fitted by a professional. My saddle hardly moves, perhaps because the blanket grips both coat and saddle.

Most saddles seem to have too small a bearing surface as well. Some are over-stuffed. Hence more rubs. Sometimes it seems as if the poor horse hasn't a chance.

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