For all the bigger riders!

I was more 'aware' of my weight when I was having lesson on a RS horse, but since I got my own horse I do not worry as much, although I wished I had lost weight having her, Ive actually put on over 2st, but no-one believes me when I say how much I weigh:) they think I am lying, so I must carry it well.
Joined the group
i have just got back into riding after losing my confidence 2 years ago (my horse decided he would throw my dad off while i was watching x.x) and i wouldnt be riding now if it wasnt for the RS i go to..

Usually every RS i go to are VERY size-est and never let me ride..i look like i weigh about 25stone to be honest with you but i weigh 16/17 stone on a bad day (medical problems) and i am a very experienced and light rider (yeah i know i've just come back into riding but it was like i had never got out of the saddle =]). It was just sooo nice to have people there who didnt judge me and were supporting me e.c.t.

even better is that i am riding a 15.1hhish cob who is really safe..usually i would of been put on 17hh+!! :eek: my horse is only 14.2hh-14.3hh and he carries me no problem, and could probably carry two of me!!

when i first got back in the saddle i got my dad to take some pictures..and i was going to post them here on NR but then i decided against it because i know i would get people jumping down my throat and telling me i am too fat to ride any horse (someone very 'kindly' shouted that at me as they went past in their car last time i rode when i went on a nice =/)

people really do underestimate horses and bigger riders..some of us are better than skinny riders you know :D

i dont have much of a problem with jods..robinsons requisite jods are lovely and comfy (and stretchy lol!) although after a few months i find myself repairing them but thats only because i live in them lmao x]
im about 275lbs and 6'3, so i dont really have a choice. I have to ride bigger horses lol!
i have ridden
16.2hh American saddlebred gelding
16.3hh thorougbred
17.2hh clydesdale
15.2hh qh
15.3hh appy
15.2hh grade
^lol thats quite an accomplishment considering i barely ride
I am currently just under 13 1/2 stone. I am 5'9". Skippy was 16.3 idx and carried me at my heaviest (14.3) without batting an eyelash. Arnie unfortunately, didnt make the height I hoped for so is just 15hh (with his shoes on!). When he was backed, I had lost weight and was 13stone. He carried me fine at that. He also carried me fine at 14stone but, I didnt carry me! At 14 stone, I struggle to get on and off. I feel like a sack of spuds on him. I get short of breath and bounce around on his back. I certainly wont jump him at that weight.

Wee slim Lucyad on here is taking him to his first XC on sunday. There is no way on this earth I would do XC till I have got a bit more weight off. I dont mean vast amounts here, if I get to 13 stone thats great.

I think the point a lot of us are missing here is, its not fair on the horse unless we are fit! Gentle hacking is absolutely fine and perhaps even a short lesson but fast work and jumping is unfair unless we are fit enough to do it - and the bottom line is, most of us who are overweight are also underfit. I would have no problems letting a fit, active 15 stone man ride Arnie. I would have a problem letting an unfit 13 stone ride him. For me, its not about the weight, its about the fitness.

The other big issue I have is with overweight people squashed into too small a saddle. I hate to see a riders weight all on the cantle. That is concentrating the weight in a small area and is really unfair on the horse.

A bigger, fitter rider in a well fitting saddle should have no major problems for general day to day riding.
The other big issue I have is with overweight people squashed into too small a saddle. I hate to see a riders weight all on the cantle. That is concentrating the weight in a small area and is really unfair on the horse.

I quite agree. This is why I made the decision to quit riding Joy until my bum shrank again. :eek:

I could have gone down the prolite pad route to alleviate but not solve the problem but that's hardly fair on Joy.

Whilst she is built like a tank and has no problems carrying and balancing my weight I am 2 sizes bigger on my lower half than my top half and her back isn't long enough to take a bigger saddle. If her back were long enough then she probably would have a strong enough back :rolleyes:
what i would like to know is as a 12 & 1/2 stone but 4ft 11inchs rider what is the smallest horse /pony i can ride ? i am currently riding a 15.2 cob at a RS but the other ladies that ride with me are alot lighter in weight but taller & are on smaller ponys ! i am very happy with the horse i ride & i am trying to loose weight but i am looking for a loan & would like to know if i could loan a smaller horse/pony ? the last thing i would want to do is turn up to see a horse & they say i am to fat to ride there horse !!
^ I'm about the same weight as you & 5ft 1, I currently ride a 14.2/3hh cob, but she is very heavyweight & strong, a real leg in each corner type, & she carries me fine. I'm too heavy for a 15hh cob mare but she is middleweight and older. I also think the cob I ride is shorter-backed which apparently helps them carry more weight. The other horse I regularly ride is a 16hh M/W type, and she seems fine with me too, and I occasionally ride a 15.1hh M/W mare who is fine with me, although as she isnt as cobby I feel bigger on her than the smaller cob. I've also ridden a 14hh m/w pony but that was only in walk & trot & only for 30mins and although he was fine with it I didn't feel comfortable. I feel best on the cob as she takes up my leg and is about the right height for me so I'm not overhorsed but she can take my weight also. It depends on the horse in question but I'd say judging by my own experiences maybe try something cobby at about 14.2 hands, around that height? :)
Another question - at what age would you consider a horse to be too old to be a weight carrier of the types of weight we are talking about here? Obviously I wouldn't go putting my hefty weight on a 20+ year old horse, but what would you consider the cut off point, 15, 18?

I have already posted pictures, but my mare is 15-15.1 hh, I am overweight (its obvious), and she is 18! My last mare I rode was 22! the other one was 24! And the tiny arabians were seniors too in the 17-20 range!

I also have to agree with some others on here..the Op didn't ask about the horses welfare because chances are anyone posting pictures, and on NR ingeneral care for the welfare of their animals, so why does it always have to come up critizing unstead of answering the original question. Everyone I ahve seen on this thread, have amazing, beautiful (or handsome), huge hearted horses to match there owners.
As a larger bottomed lady I am very grateful for this thread! I am 5'6'' and weigh just over 12 stone. I ride whatever I am put on - at the moment I would guess the smallest was 14.1 welsh D and about the same height MW cob but they are only for riding lessons so about an hour at a time.

I am thoroughly uncomfortable at this weight and contribute a LOT of it to comfort eating while I am writing my thesis (almost done now though). I spend quite a bit of time on horsemart wistfully looking at ads but I didnt know what I should be looking for...yes I want to be thinner but so do a lot of ppl and what if I dont manage it, i would need a horse that could carry me as I am now...but what does that MEAN?? :confused:

I tried to work it out for a 14.3 horse, optimum weight around 400Kg (according to some condition scoring site) and someone else saying that they can carry 20% of their own weight, so one could just carry me now if it was 14.3.

So its good to hear what kind of horses you are riding and how they cope and what size you are in comparison to me because now I have a better idea what I should be gazing wistfully at :D :D
I just wanted to give a big thumbs up for all the larger riders (being one myself)

I have heard that most native types can carry upto 25% of their bodyweight if they are fit and healthy enough. There are also those who say that most natives can carry 1 stone per hh. I know my girl carries me fine and she is only just 14hh (and lets say we I am roughly hitting that stone per hand thing)

Although I will say that I do feel healthier and better in myself when I am thinner it seems my pony doesn't mind what size I am! lol
Remember guys that the 20% includes tack, not just you. That is why RS's etc have lower weight limits to take that into account. And possibly why a 15.1hh cob at the RS cannot carry me at 12 stone... RS horses also work much harder than a private horse typically, therefore the limits are lower to account for that also.
Gem, I would have no problem putting you on a 14.hh cob. I've seen you ride and I really can't see the issue. But then again it could be the horse as others have said.

How do you think I look I weigh 15stone and have a 15.1hh Cob that i've had for 5 years.


I have and still ride a variety of horses and types, thankfully I've been told I ride with a light seat which helps. I think it does definately depend on how the rider sits. I've had a 8 stone person on my horse that sat like a sack of spuds and he hated it. While another person who is 16 stone rode him and he went like a dream. So I think the rider has a lot to do with how weight they carry themselves.
I still would like to repeat that given what I am going through at the moment, I think the concern for many overweight riders and is often not mentioned is that the saddle must carry their weight in the centre of the saddle in a balanced way.

My 14.3hh sec d shows no signs of being concerned about my weight but as she only has a back long enough for a 17.5 inch saddle my bum pushes back towards the cantle giving uneven weight distribution and the beginings of back problems.

Let me make this plain, my bum was not even overhanging the saddle at the back and I could still get my hand between me and the back of the saddle. However, my flabby bum is pushing down more towards the back as the seat began to curve upwards over the cantle region.

Now I have experienced this problem my eyes are open to the issue and I am noticing many people experiencing the same thing without realising it - be it taller slim people on short backed equines or larger bottomed riders.

Even my saddler wouldn't outright say that the saddle was unsuitable for me and to stop riding, I came to that conclusion after I asked the very loaded question fo whether the prolite pad she suggested would SOLVE the problem of uneven pressure. When she said it would not I made the decision not to ride until I had solved the problem. I have decided not to ride until I am happy my bum is small enough to be comfortably balanced in the centre of the saddle.

i totally agree and understand what your saying. i changed my saddle fitter when i bought gizmo and the first question i asked when mounted was about my butt on the saddle. im very very aware of it, ive been having issues with giz recently schooling, so after 3 changes of saddle, and riders i came to the conclusion its not the saddle/me.

(i think ive over schooled a bit and hes bored.)

being on the larger side im also carful to get hes back checked etc.

with snapper back in work i walk her once a day and ride her once aday.

i am losing weight, (lack of teeth really helps in eating you know,, i cant bite a thing!)

your get there aswell, lead out in hand, long rein etc your soon burn off the extra calories!
I agree JC. Ruby is TBxID, and although she has the bone of an ID she is quite long backed. Because i'm 14 stone I prefer to ride in a dressage saddle because it distributes my weight more evenly over Ruby's strongest part of her body. I think I tend to ride light too, it's weird how a heavier rider can ride lighter than a lghter rider lol. I think that the dressage saddle aids a better seat in trot/canter - much more gentler on the horses back. Ruby doesn't ever break into sweat or show any signs of tiredness/pain/discomfort when I've ridden her, I'd never ride her if I thought I was too heavy.
i wouldnt count myself as a fuller filly as i am a midget :p anyway i think what most people dont realise is that heavier horses were bred to pull weights and not carry them. for instance a shire could pull 20stone very comfortably but would find it a hell off a lot harder to carry 20stone. mainly beacuase they are put together in a way where pulling weight is easier than carrying it. just coz a horse has a lot of bone and is chunky doesnt mean they can carry a lot of weight. and also you have to work a horse up to it. there would eb a big difference between me at a bit over 9 stone riding a HW cob and then someone 20stone getting on him. thye would not be used to carrying the weight and would struggle. they need to be built up very graudally.
this is me on my 15.1hh friesian i'm 5ft 1 and ?? (quess how many) stones be nice :p but i'm stronger than my dad:eek: i muscle so easily :eek: