It takes practice to tack up a horse, especially when putting the saddle on. Learn the procedure, and the first few times you try it, ask a seasoned equestrian for assistance. It’s crucial to ensure the saddle is properly fastened because you don’t want it to come off while you’re riding.
Get Your Horse Ready
- You must first ensure and maintain the stillness of your horse. Ask a friend or trainer to assist you in calming and securing your horse, or tie it with a cross-tie or quick-release slip knot.
- Thoroughly brush the horse, taking care to get the hairs in the girth and on the back. Verify that these places don’t have any dirt, bedding, or other things adhered to them.
- Make sure that there are no burrs, sticks, or other objects clinging to the underside of the saddle blanket and girth or cinch.
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Place Pads And Blankets
Before placing a saddle on a horse, you need a saddle pad or blanket. In addition to shielding the horseback, it also retains the saddle in position and prevents it from moving.
There are numerous styles and materials available for saddle pads and blankets. You can choose a filling made of cotton, wool, gel, or memory foam. Western-style riders typically choose to cover the pads with blankets, commonly folded in half. In that situation, verify that the fold line coincides with the horse’s spinal column.
Place the front of the pad a few inches in front of the horse’s withers, near the base of the neck, while standing on the animal’s left side.
Prepare To Place The Saddle
Most horse trainers teach their charges to anticipate a rider on their left. The same holds true for mounting your horse. Equestrians refer to the left side of a saddle as the near side and the right side as the far side. Approach a horse from the left side only. Place the saddle on a pad or blanket after raising it. Don’t forget to be cautious so as not to frighten the horse or injure its back.
With roughly 3 inches of the pad visible in front and behind, the saddle should rest in the hollow slightly below the withers. Check to verify if the cinch, when fastened to the saddle, will fit right below the horse’s elbows to establish whether the saddle is placed on the horse’s back properly.
Secure the Girth
Depending on the style of the saddle, you should tie the cinch or girth after placing the saddle on your horse. Your safety is served by this piece of equipment since it stops it from slipping to the side.
It’s important to start loose and subsequently tighten the girth sufficiently. A saddle that is fitted too tightly could hinder the animal’s ability to breathe and lead it to slide around quickly.
A properly leveled girth has a location on either side that is symmetrical. The distance between the horse’s girth and stomach must be at least arm’s width.
Take Note: After a brief stroll with your horse and before mounting, check the cinch or girth once again. It is advised to walk it for at least ten minutes to look for any saddle or girth issues.