Wide horses & issues with hips?

Jnhuk

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Just wondering as my current horse is just getting wider and his new saddle just fitted with an 4XW gullet! Everyone who sits on him comments on how wide he is - even instructors. I am coping with his width just now but with my increasing years but does riding wide horses knacker your hips as everyone is commenting to me about it?
 

Goldenstar

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I can’t ride H our ID for long he’s too wide for my replaced hip it’s the only thing I do that makes me feel it .
At this time of year he’s at his slimmest and I find him much easier to ride .
 

Red-1

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I rode XL horses for years and now I have little tolerance for sitting on wide hoses. My hips and knees suffered to the point that I could no longer drive a car with a clutch and was in daily pain.

It is not just the width though, I manage better with horses who have suspension (as in are not clunky on the ground) and horses that don't have the exaggerated paces. So, my last 2 horses have been good movers, but not clunky warmbloods! Wide, clunky cobs/ shire is the worst.

The exaggerated WB type don't tend to hurt the hips as much as the small of my back, but I think that is because my hips don't move so much.

Current horse is a 15.3 half bred. Very comfy, no issues.
 
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Mine is a wide lass. I find that making sure I open my hips help and I ride the stirrup length I am confortable with. If she gains I pop up a hole usually.
 

Auslander

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Alf is very wide, but he doesn't hurt my hips. I am so used to him that I have more trouble riding narrower horses - I feel like I can't ride at all!
 

mule

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As mine gets musclier and more dressage built than eventing built he has got wider. He's more than half tb so he's not really wide, but there's a fair amount of Irish draught in him which is becoming more obvious.

He doesn't affect my hips, but he's a lot narrower than yours. I do find the narrower types much easier to ride, particularly the rising trot. I'm 5.2" with narrow hips which doesn't help :confused:
 

Cortez

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I think it depends as much on your own conformation and the state of your hips as it does the width of the horses. I have one wide and one less so, but so far (touching all wood within reach) no problems with my hip joints. I do teach one lady who has problems, she has a wide ID - but I think that may be because she doesn't ride that frequently and has other problems with her back and knees too.
 
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I got told I had child bearing hips which I am sure is an old wives tale, it definately didn't appear to be a compliment as to my shape!

You could try some gentle pilates or yoga.
 

mule

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I got told I had child bearing hips which I am sure is an old wives tale, it definately didn't appear to be a compliment as to my shape!

You could try some gentle pilates or yoga.
A friend of mine was also told that but it was meant as a compliment. Although I'm not sure she took it that way😳
 

mule

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In most centuries previous to this one (and the 2nd half of the last), having wide hips was the first requirement to be considered beautiful.....
Absolutely. A larger figure was also desirable until the same period. I believe it still is in some countries.

I wonder is it because we now have more food and consequently have become larger, that we now value thinner bodies? Aren't humans a contrary species!
 

tda

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I'm small 5,2 and have ridden dales and fells all my life, mostly very wide. 😁
As I don't ride ,much at the moment when I do get on I do get cramp in one hip, but I might get that anyway on a skinny horse

Edited to add, me from age 9 to 49 😁
 
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I think after a certain age, things just head south. Not for the winter either but longterm.
Some saddles just don't suit our pelvis either and I found on wide horses that they were taking me away from the horse.
 

catkin

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I think after a certain age, things just head south. Not for the winter either but longterm.
Some saddles just don't suit our pelvis either and I found on wide horses that they were taking me away from the horse.
This is very true, and I wonder if you sub-consciously gravitate towards the type of horse that suits you/are used to.
My ponies have/do wear XW trees but they are also not that tall, and are breeds that have been ridden for centuries so I'd guess that proportionally they are 'riding shape' and don't perhaps feel as wide as a larger horse from draft blood????? (Does that make sense?)
 
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This is very true, and I wonder if you sub-consciously gravitate towards the type of horse that suits you/are used to.
My ponies have/do wear XW trees but they are also not that tall, and are breeds that have been ridden for centuries so I'd guess that proportionally they are 'riding shape' and don't perhaps feel as wide as a larger horse from draft blood????? (Does that make sense?)
I lean towards what I like. That's always been natives and hairies.
I have ridden horses but prefer ponies.
 

Theocat

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I have had problems with my knees and hips for years, and have just got used to being sore. My own horses have been average-wide.

I recently spent an intensive week riding something pretty narrow and was completely pain free. It was the first time I really realised that the width of the horse - rather than just riding in general - makes a difference.
 

sbloom

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Despite what Schleese says there is evidence that, on average, putting a narrrower twist on any horse causes increased pressure in the middle of the saddle, I'd not advise it.

The only saddles that take 4XW headplates are notoriously uncomfortable, compared to others that fit those shapes (and to be fair usually fit them better). I would advise trying some other saddles/fitters, make sure you aren't going too straight cut as the longer your stirrup the worse it will feel, and if you really can't ride in a wide enough saddle then you may need to rethink. I fit really wide horses as a speciality.
 

Aimeetess

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A friend refused to ride my welsh as hes so wide, hes not fat just hugely broad shoulders so the new saddle was one setting before the widest it can go. First time I rode him in the it my hips were killing, I had to get off after 10 minutes (i'm 23) walking like i'd just given birth and now 8 months later I don't even notice it. Interesting if it causes problems later on..
 

catkin

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Despite what Schleese says there is evidence that, on average, putting a narrrower twist on any horse causes increased pressure in the middle of the saddle, I'd not advise it.
Out of interest, does using one of the memory-foam type seat-savers help (by raising you a couple of mms more above the tree) or do they cause balance or pressure problems?
I've not used one but have heard suggestions.
 

Jnhuk

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Despite what Schleese says there is evidence that, on average, putting a narrrower twist on any horse causes increased pressure in the middle of the saddle, I'd not advise it.

The only saddles that take 4XW headplates are notoriously uncomfortable, compared to others that fit those shapes (and to be fair usually fit them better). I would advise trying some other saddles/fitters, make sure you aren't going too straight cut as the longer your stirrup the worse it will feel, and if you really can't ride in a wide enough saddle then you may need to rethink. I fit really wide horses as a speciality.
Thanks SBloom. If I wasn't at the opposite end of the country I might have come to you as I was aware that you fitted natives/wide horses as a speciality. I have just changed to this saddle fitter specifically for their experience with wide/natives and hard to fit horses who has a excellent reputation and providence struck and they have moved to just up the road from me. We are now trying the newest version of Bates Wide GP as fitter didn't want me to go to the dressage saddle although originally that was what I was hoping for as had been riding in a jump saddle as that was the only thing that my previous saddle fitter to get to fit. It is early days yet but I am not currently having an issue with my hips and generally I am quite flexible that way but when everyone starts to comment about how do your hips cope with that and comments about heading for hip replacements sooner due to me riding him, I was starting to get a bit worried. My previous horses have been ID and ISH x WB but they were not as wide as this cheeky chap. I do feel it is easier on narrow horses to get your lower leg round but I enjoy riding this fellow and wouldn't part with him for the world
 
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