How Big Of A Horse Do I Need?

Your inseam should be 60% or less of the horse’s height in inches. That means, if you have a 36″ inseam, your horse should be at least 15 hands tall.

How Tall Should A Horse Be Based On Rider Height.

Rider Inseam Minimum Horse Height
36″ 15 hands
38″ 15.3 hands
40″ 16.2 hands

6 •

  • The size of the horse you need depends on your height and weight. Most horses should be able to carry a rider and saddle that total 20-25% of their own body weight or less. This number varies based on the horse’s fitness.

What size horse do I need to ride?

In general, the rider should not be so tall as to look top-heavy on the horse, and the rider’s feet should not hang much lower than the horse’s belly when the stir- rups are adjusted properly. more weight than horses, usually up to 35 or 40% of their weight. Obviously, a heavier rider will need a larger, heavier horse.

What size horse should a 5 4 person ride?

I am 5’4″ and about 8 and a half stone I ride everything from little ponies around 12hh to bigger horses around the 17hh+ mark. If I were choosing a horse for myself, I’d probably go for something between 13.2hh and 16hh. That should also be fine for you.

How do you tell if you’re too big for a horse?

If your feet are dragging on the floor or hitting poles when you are jumping, you should probably consider a larger horse… It is also true that riding a smaller or narrower horse can be more unbalancing than riding a wider or larger one and the gaits of larger horses differ from those of smaller ones.

Can you be too fat to ride a horse?

Considering Weight There is debate about this percentage, but the general rule is that a horse should carry no more than 20 percent of their weight. 2 Remember that this weight also includes the saddle and other riding equipment, in addition to the rider. An overweight horse cannot necessarily carry a heavier rider.

Is 15 hands a big horse?

The average height of a horse is 15.2 hands or around 5 feet. Any equine measuring more than 14.2 hands (57 inches) is classified as a horse, and anything less is classified as a pony or miniature horse. A cob measures at about 15 hands and often straddles the line between ponies and “horse” sized.

What weight can a 14.2 pony carry?

As a general guide, a horse should carry a maximum of a sixth of his weight, so if he’s around 400 kg (about average for a 14.2) he can carry up to 67kg (including tack), so your 9/10 stone is spot on!

Can a horse be 14.5 hands?

Hands and Other Measurements A horse could never be said to be 14.5 inches, as the number after the decimal is not a fraction, but represents an entire inch. If a horse is 14.2 1/2 HH, that means he’s two and one-half inches over 14 hands.

How do I choose a horse to buy?

To make things as easy as possible for you, here are 15 expert tips for choosing the right horse.

  1. Choose the Right Size.
  2. Choose the Right Breed.
  3. Choose a Horse that Suits Your Personality.
  4. Choose a Horse that Matches Your Experience Level.
  5. Choose a Horse that Suits Your Riding Goals.
  6. Bring Someone More Experienced With You.

What horse can carry 300 pounds?

Weighing between 1,500-1,600 pounds and standing at 16-17 hands, an average American Cream Draft can carry up to 300 pounds. This is equivalent to around a 260 pound rider and tack that weighs up to 40 pounds.

How much weight can a 15.2 horse carry?

The maximum weight a horse can carry is 400 pounds based on the 20% rule. Most horses can safely carry 20% of their body weight. 4

What size horse should a 5’6 person ride?

Guest. Weight wise you could ride most horses down to about 13hh. Height wise your going to feel a bit unbalanced on anything less than about 14.2ish. I would look in the 14.2 – 16hh range, aiming for 15.2 as a good size for your height.

Is 200 lbs too heavy for a horse?

A: Laurie, the basic rule of thumb for a horse’s weight-carrying capacity is 20 percent of the horse’s weight, or, say, 200 pounds for a 1,000-pound horse. A strong, fit, well-coordinated but heavier rider can often be easier for a horse to bear than a weak, unfit, awkward but lighter rider.

How high can a 14.1 hh pony jump?

Well-Known Member. Depends on the pony, my 14hh used to do 1.20m BSJA and has jumped 1.40m, however my old pony, the same height, could jump no higher than a 90cm course, and her limit was about 1.15m as a single jump.

How to Choose The Right Size Horse Based On Your Height and Weight

It is understandable if you are new to horses and are unsure of what size horse you require. Finding the correct size horse for your needs, whether you are a child or an adult, can be tough if you aren’t aware of the factors to consider. What Kind of Horse Do You Require? The size of the horse you require is determined by your height and weight, among other factors. Horses who can carry a rider and saddle that weighs no more than 20-25 percent of their own body weight or less are generally considered to be in good condition.

Based on that value, the following chart can be used as a guideline:

  • A 600-pound horse (or pony) can carry 120-150 pounds total
  • An 800-pound horse can carry 160-200 pounds total
  • A 1000-pound horse can carry 200-250 pounds total
  • A 1200-pound horse can carry 240-300 pounds total
  • A 1500-pound horse can carry 300-375 pounds total
  • And an 1800-pound horse can carry 360-450 pounds total.

Continue reading for more information on sizing a horse to the rider’s height and weight.

Determining How Big Your Horse Should Be Based on Your Weight

When determining the appropriate size horse for your weight, you must consider a number of various aspects, including the following:

  • Your physical fitness
  • Your riding experience
  • The physical fitness of your horse
  • The type of activity you intend to participate in

When horses are under a great deal of stress, the size of the rider becomes more essential. This isn’t a worry for most people who are just starting started with horseback riding. Consider your ability level and the intended use of the horse when learning how to ride or when purchasing your next horse. If you want to learn how to ride or when purchasing your next horse, consider your skill level and the intended use of the horse. The majority of horses are capable of carrying a load at the heavier end of the commonly regarded acceptable range if you are only riding at a walk and trot on level trails or in the ring.

You’ll want to stay closer to the lower end of the safe range when you’re adding in factors such as pace, elevation, and length, such as a six-hour mountain trail ride.

Equitation balance may be attained at a basic level if you are comfortable riding in all three gaits and can do so with up and down transitions without using the reins or horns.

For your convenience, the total weight in pounds is shown on the left, and the minimum horse weight is shown on the right in the recommended 20 -25 percent ranges.

Choosing The Right Sized Horse Based on Rider Weight

Total Weight Minimum Horse Weight(20% Value) Minimum Horse Weight(25% Value)
110 550 440
120 600 480
130 650 520
140 700 560
150 750 600
160 800 640
170 850 680
180 900 720
190 950 760
200 1000 800
210 1050 840
220 1100 880
230 1150 920
240 1200 960
250 1250 1000
260 1300 1040
270 1350 1080
280 1400 1120
290 1450 1160
300 1500 1200

Figuring Out How Much Your Saddle Weighs

To get an exact estimate of the overall weight you are asking your horse to carry, you must take into account the weight of the saddle, saddle pad, and any other accessories. But how much do such items weigh in the first place? The answer is very dependent on the type of saddle you ride in. Is your saddle made of leather or synthetic material?

If it’s an English saddle, what kind of roping saddle is it in the western style? All of these factors contribute to the final result. Western saddle pads are often the heaviest, weighing 6-8 lbs or more in most cases on horses. All other saddle pads are typically less than four pounds in weight.

Chart of Saddle Weights

Riding Style Type Weight (lbs)
Western Roping 45 lbs
Western Cutting 27 lbs
Western Trail 22 lbs
Western Barrel Racing 24 lbs
Western Synthetic 18.9 lbs
English Jumping 14.3 lbs
English Cross Country 12.7 lbs
English Synthetic 13.3 lbs
Endurance Bob Marshall Treeless 15 lbs
Endurance Synthetic 18 lbs
Dressage Leather 14.9 lbs
Dressage Synthetic 11.2 lbs
Australian Stock 29 lbs
Australian Synthetic 18.7 lbs

How to Measure Horse Weight

The weight of a horse must be estimated in order to decide whether or not it is the appropriate size for you to ride him. This is not always a simple task. Generally speaking, the height of the horse corresponds to the amount of weight it carries, although this is not always the case. The weight of a horse is generally measured in one of three ways. The first and most precise method is to weigh the horse on a livestock scale, which will provide an exact reading of the horse’s weight. Getting a genuine reading can only be accomplished in this manner.

So, how do you determine the weight of a horse if you don’t have access to a livestock scale?

Using a Horse Weight Tape

A weight tape is the most convenient tool for determining a horse’s weight. These are commercially available and, in most cases, reasonably priced. Each weight tape is labeled with a sequence of numbers and letters. On most scales, one side is used for measuring height, while the other is used for measuring weight. Please keep in mind that this approach is not as exact as weighing your horse on a scale. Even for persons who are accustomed to employing the procedure, the weight loss might be between 100 and 200 pounds.

Some fundamental guidelines are as follows:

  1. Make sure the weight tape is placed over the horse’s back so that the weight measuring side is facing upward. Pull the tail end of the weight tape beneath the horse’s belly until it is snugly secured. Vertically level and directly around the horse’s cinch area, it should be installed. Maintain a firm grip on the tape without pulling it too tight. Take a reading at the point where the zero mark meets a weight mark, for example. This is an estimate of your horse’s weight in pounds, in kilograms. Make a note of your weight

TIP: Take a number of different measurements. Each of your readings should be quite close to the other. If this is the case, you should practice your method until you can consistently obtain the same weight measurement.

Using Measurements to Calculate Horse Weight

A horse weight tape is essentially a technique of transmitting the determined weight method to a measurement equipment, such as a scale. If you don’t have access to a physical weight tape, you can perform this computation on your own. Even while this approach is more time-consuming than utilizing a weight tape, it is often more precise. The formula for calculating a horse’s weight is:= Weight (lbs) First and foremost, you must get two measurements:

  1. You should measure the horse’s heart girth, which is defined as a circle around its barrel, where the cinch is often placed. This is the measurement for the Heart Girth. Measure the length of the horse’s body from the point of the shoulder to the point of the buttocks, including the tail. The Body Length Measurement is as follows:

Now, let’s go over an example of a horse weight calculation based on the above equation. = 1,009 kg According to some sources, the divisor should be adjusted in accordance with the horse’s age. It would be necessary to compute horse weight using the following equation in that situation.

  • Weight (pounds) of an adult horse
  • Weight (pounds) of a yearling horse
  • Weight (pounds) of a weanling horse

Choosing Horse Size Based On Rider Height

There is minimal correlation between horse size and a rider’s height, however a tall rider riding on a little horse may appear unusual. However, the fact is that tall men ride shorter horses than do small women who ride longer horses. The height of the horse does not matter as long as it is physically capable of carrying the rider on its back. But what height horse should you select if you don’t want to appear as if you’re riding a little horse? In actuality, tall riders who are concerned about appearing too big for a shorter horse are the only ones who have a legitimate reason to be concerned.

  1. I’m 5’8″, so I understand what it’s like to feel like you’re too large for a horse.
  2. No, I’m not able to provide you a definitive response since I’m not aware of any scientific studies that address this issue.
  3. It is recommended that you have an inseam that is 60 percent or less of the horse’s height in inches.
  4. It’s not that you couldn’t ride a taller or shorter horse; in fact, based on the facts provided above, you very certainly could.

A 14-hand Hafflinger horse will appear significantly larger than a 14-hand Arabian horse. For this reason, the weight is quite significant. Please keep in mind that this is only a rough guideline based on my own personal experience with how you could “feel” on a horse depending on its height.

How Tall Should A Horse Be Based On Rider Height

Rider Inseam Minimum Horse Height
24″ 10 hands
26″ 10.3 hands
28″ 11.2 hands
30″ 12.2 hands
32″ 13.1 hands
34″ 14 hands
36″ 15 hands
38″ 15.3 hands
40″ 16.2 hands

Related Questions

When it comes to heavy riders, what breed of horse is the most suitable? Draft breeds, such as the Belgian horse, the Shire horse, the Percheron Horse, the Clydesdale Horse, and the Ardennes Horse, among others, are best suited for riders weighing more than 250 pounds. Is it possible that I’m too tall for my horse? When establishing the right rider size for a horse, height is not taken into consideration. In order to be considered scientifically valid, riders must be of proper weight. Despite the fact that a rider may appear to be excessively tall on a horse, as long as the rider’s weight does not exceed 20-25 percent of the horse’s body weight, the rider is not excessively large for the animal.

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Recommended Reading

Based on your interest in this post, you may also be interested in the following articles on our website.

  • Detailed information about Off the Track Thoroughbreds, including a tattoo reading guide
  • A breakdown of the best reins for trail riding
  • And a list of fruits and vegetables that horses like to consume.

How Big of a Horse Do I Need? (Choosing the Correct Size of Horse)

Jennifer’s expertise is in writing articles regarding horses and their training, maintenance, and purchase. Find out how to identify the appropriate size of horse for each rider by watching this video. Image courtesy of Pixabay user Mandy Fontana. Beginner riders and first-time buyers sometimes inquire about the size of the horse they require. Riders who are heavier than average may wonder if they should even bother to bike at all. Choosing the appropriate size for your body is a difficult decision.

However, there are some general criteria for selecting the appropriate size for the rider, which take into consideration the following factors:

The 20% Rule

It is probable that you will come across the 20 percent rule when investigating a horse’s carrying capacity, which indicates that a horse’s carrying capacity is equal to 20 percent of its body weight. The combined weight of the rider and his or her equipment should not exceed 20 percent of the horse’s total body weight. For example, a horse weighing 1,000 pounds should not be asked to carry more than 200 pounds. It’s for this reason that many riding facilities impose a 200-pound weight restriction; however, others may allow riders to weigh as much as 250 pounds, which serves as an additional incentive to shed weight if at all possible.

Rider Experience

Inexperienced riders make it more difficult for a horse to carry them. All first-year students are bags of potatoes. I’m sorry, but it’s the truth.

  • If a skilled rider weighs 140 pounds, a 13-hand pony may be perfectly capable of carrying him
  • Nevertheless, a decent instructor would never put a beginner of the same weight on the same pony. Riders get greater confidence as they gain more riding experience, and they learn to maintain their own balance, carry their own weight, and sit lighter on a horse’s back. When you are carrying weight that moves with you, you are less stressed than when you are carrying lifeless weight.

Horse Fitness

When a horse is not in excellent shape, it should not be asked to carry as much weight as possible.

Read More From Pethelpful

  • As a general rule, while beginning a horse, it is preferable to use a lighter rider whenever feasible. A green horse does not have the muscle to carry a rider and will feel the weight more intensely
  • The same is true for a horse that has been out of service for several months. (If it is not possible to reduce the weight, the duration of rides should be maintained short and gradually increased as the rider acquires fitness. )
  • And Horses who have a history of chronic lameness, back issues, or foundering should not be forced to carry as much weight as healthy horses should. Older people should not be required to carry as much weight as younger people.

Conformation and Type

The conformation of a horse has a significant influence on the amount of weight it can carry.

  • Back. A horse with a very lengthy back is more likely to suffer from back issues. It is therefore necessary to decrease the amount of weight carried. As an example, someone with an exceedingly short back may have difficulty carrying big saddle bags since they will be too far back and at the very least unpleasant for the horse
  • Bone. The bone is the most important factor in weight bearing capacity. The bone of a horse is measured by wrapping a piece of thread or dressmakers tape around the horse’s front leg, just below the knee, and measuring it. In England, horses are classified as light, medium, or heavyweight based on the quantity of bone they have—lightweight horses have less than 8 inches of bone, middleweight horses have 8 to 9 inches of bone, and heavyweight horses have more than 9 inches of bone. The more bone they have, the more they can carry, and the more probable it is that it will remain sound. Horses who are exceptionally tall frequently have inadequate bone
  • Type. For taller cyclists, type is as as crucial as height, if not more so. There must be enough barrel in it for it to “take up” your lower leg. That is to say, your heels should not generally be lower than the horse’s barrel, since this makes it more difficult to ride and also makes the horse appear too little for you, even if they are capable of carrying you well. Ponies are at the opposite end of the spectrum
  • You don’t want one with so much barrel that your heels strike the saddle rather than the horse
  • This is the extreme. Ponies, on average, are able to carry far more weight than horses, in proportion to their size. There are certain breeds that are well-known for their extraordinary carrying ability, most notably the Dartmoor and Exmoor ponies in England (which can weigh as little as 12.2 pounds yet are typically capable of carrying a fully grown man across the moors) and the Icelandic Horse
  • Draft horses. Many larger riders believe that purchasing a draft horse is the best solution. After all, they are massive and have a lot of bone, don’t you think? Because draft horses are not intended to carry weight on their backs, they are instead bred to pull weight, which is an issue. Their physiques and muscling differ from one another. An particularly tall and hefty rider will benefit from the use of a high-quality hybrid between a draught horse and a riding horse rather than a pure draught.

Purpose, Use, and Gear

  • Western vs. English clothing and equipment. It’s important to remember that western equipment weights far more than English equipment. The average weight of a western saddle is 50 pounds. An English saddle, without irons, weights little more than 20 lbs (7.5 kg). When saddling, there is a significant difference that is quite obvious to the eye. If you are trail riding and want to use saddle bags, you should anticipate on adding additional 15 to 20 pounds to your weight allowance. The greater the amount of time you want to spend working with a horse and the greater the intensity of the task, the less weight you should ask it to bear. If all you do is short trail rides on your own property, you can typically get away with a smaller horse
  • Showing is an exception to this rule, though. When displaying, it is critical that you seem proportionate to your horse, despite the fact that extremely huge horses are presently trendy in the dressage and saddlebred arenas. It is commonly believed that if you want to win, you need to be a big one
  • This is especially true in barrel racing and gambling. The smallest horse that can comfortably carry you while also doing the task is the most ideal for barrel racing and gaming, as smaller horses can turn more swiftly than larger horses in these situations. Racing horses are rarely taller than 15 hands, but they are often stocky sprinters that can carry a lot of weight
  • Racehorses are horses who compete in barrel racing. Racehorses, on the other hand, are designed to carry as little weight as feasible. (It’s worth mentioning that thoroughbreds, particularly taller thoroughbreds trained to travel over longer distances, tend to have less bone and are not as strong as their height would suggest.)

Will Your Horse Complain If Over-Burdened?

The answer is “maybe.”

  • Mules. Mules, in example, are well-known for letting their handlers know when they are being asked to do too much, and they may even lie down and refuse to move until a portion of the load is removed
  • Horses. Many horses, on the other hand, will continue to work regardless of their discomfort. Horses will continue to work even when they are overburdened, lame, or exhausted, and I have had to physically restrain several of them from continuing to work when they should not have been allowed to. Although I have seen horses, particularly ponies, balk or halt completely and refuse to go if the rider is too heavy, the majority of horses will not do so. In order to discern whether something could be too much, the rider must use his or her better judgment.

This is one of the reasons why mule enthusiasts frequently assert that mules are more intelligent than horses. Cowgirlon Wednesday, August 3rd, 2018: It’s a fantastic piece of writing. This page contains a great deal of useful information. Thanks! Debbie Roberts from Greece wrote on February 25, 2012, in response to: While I haven’t rode horses since childhood, I was drawn to your hub by the prospect of learning more about them.

I wasn’t let down in the least! Your hub is beautifully written, extremely helpful, and simple to read and comprehend. Thank you for sharing it. A good hub that has been shared.

What Size Horse Do I Need: Beginner’s Guide

Published at 15:25 UTC hinBreeds,Health, and Horse Training Tips What Size Horse Do I Need? When it comes to getting a horse, one of the first things you’ll likely ask yourself is what size horse do I need. Having an idea of what size horse will be the most comfortable for you can assist you in narrowing down your search to certain heights and breeds. I’ve produced this post to assist you in determining what size horse will be the most comfortable for you. How do you figure out what size horse you’ll need for your project?

  • Your weight
  • Your height
  • Are you at the end of your growth cycle? Your current skill level
  • Your long-term riding objectives

Simply riding a variety of horses is the most effective method of determining what size horse will best suit your needs. I’ve rode a lot of horses in my time, and I’ve come to the conclusion that I will almost certainly never acquire another horse that is taller than 14.2 HH. Ponies are a fantastic ride for someone my height and strength, and I prefer them to horses in most situations. It also helps because they’re closer to the ground for mounting up and falling off, which is hilarious. Riding horses that are different in size and build will assist you in determining which horse is the greatest fit for your needs.

What Size Horse You Need According to Your Weight?

Horses are only capable of carrying a particular amount of their body weight comfortably; for the majority of horses, this number is 20 percent. It is possible for you to create discomfort to your horse by being too heavy for him. This can result in muscular stiffness and tension, as well as joint problems. If you are too heavy for a horse, the horse will grow fatigued much more quickly than if you are not. Not only does this endanger the horse, but it also endangers the rider. The horse may stumble and fall, or it may just lay down.

The horse will walk with its feet dragged and at a slower pace than usual.

How to Determine How Much a Horse Can Carry:

You must first estimate the weight of your horse in order to determine how much it can carry. When determining the weight of your horse, using a scale is the most precise method of determining how much your horse weighs. Unfortunately, obtaining a scale large enough to measure your horse might be difficult, and they’re generally only available at large animal veterinarian offices or equine facilities. Other methods of calculating your horse’s weight exist, albeit they are not as exact as using a measuring scale.

You may also find out how much your horse weighs by measuring his length and height.

The body length of a horse is measured from the horse’s chest to just below and a few inches below the dock of the tail, depending on the breed.

Following the completion of your horse’s measurements, you will calculate 20 percent of your horse’s total weight. A 1000-pound (453.5-kg) horse can safely carry 200 pounds (100 kilograms) (90.7 kg).

What Breeds Can Carry the Most Weight?

Naturally, the greater the size of the horse, the greater the amount of weight it can carry. Draft horses are capable of carrying far more weight than the ordinary horse. The bone structure of a draft horse makes them perfect for pulling or carrying heavy loads of cargo. Even though draft horses can carry a greater amount of weight due to their sheer size, there are other horse breeds that are engineered to carry a greater percentage of their own body weight. The Icelandic horse, Morgan horse, Mongolian horse, Mustang horse, and even some quarter horses are all capable of carrying more than 20% of their own body weight on their backs.

This will make things a lot simpler for both you and your horse.

What Size Horse You Need According to Your Height?

You’ve certainly heard the expression “outgrown a horse” a lot, which refers to a rider’s physical size. When it comes to horses and ponies, horse people are anxious that they will appear to be too large. The ability to appear smaller on a horse is often a coveted attribute that most riders seek. Your riding experience will be imbalanced if your height is too great for a horse. You will feel unbalanced on the horse, almost as if you are top-heavy. When riding a horse that is too tiny for a tall rider, not only will the rider feel unstable, but they also risk throwing off the animal’s balance as well.

Sitting on the horse and not having to stretch your arms to touch the horse’s tail or just behind the horse’s ears indicates that you are likely to be very tall.

How to Determine If You’re Too Tall for a Horse:

Just try on as many various horses as possible and snap photographs of yourself to figure out whether you’re too tall for them to tell you if you’re too tall for them. The body shape of each horse is unique, and even tiny horses might have a body structure that is more accommodating to your height than a tall horse. Horses that are strong and round can “take up a rider’s leg,” as we say, which means that their width makes up for their height and the rider seems smaller as a result of their wide shoulders.

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Ponies of the Americas (POAs) are sturdy and 13.1 HH.

I appeared to be a better match for the POA pony than I did for the quarab!

Her stoutness gave the impression that my 6 ft tall spouse was a good match for her.

Remember that just because the horse is taller than you does not imply that you will be able to fit inside it any better in terms of height. Never rule out smaller, stockier horses until you’ve had a chance to ride a couple.

Are You Done Growing?

“That rider outgrown their horse,” is a phrase that I despise hearing. I’ve met riders who purchased a horse immediately before they experienced a growth spurt, only to be forced to sell the horse the following year because they had grown too large for the horse they had purchased. Before you buy a horse, think about your age and whether or not you will be finished developing anytime soon. I always advise young riders to hold off on acquiring a horse until they have reached about the height at which they will be riding.

Even if you’re set on obtaining a horse before you’re sure whether or not you’ll be through growing, always attempt to acquire a horse that would be comfortable for you even if you gained a few more inches.

As a result, I propose that you look at horses rather than ponies when shopping.

What is the Size of Some of the Horses You Ride Now?

In order to determine what size horse you will require, consider some of the horses you are currently riding if you are enrolled in a lesson program. What size horse is the most appropriate for you? Is there a horse you ride that you think could be able to become a little taller if you continue to develop in stature? It is possible that you may need to get a horse that is the same size and build as the one you have. If you have a riding teacher, you should inquire about the size of horse that they recommend for you to ride.

Perhaps they have a horse in mind for you to purchase as well!

What Size Horse Would Best Fit Your Current Skill Level?

You may get an idea of what size horse you need by looking at horses you are already riding if you are taking lessons. Which horse size is the most appropriate for you. Is there a horse you ride that you think could be able to become a bit taller if you keep growing? Maybe you might try to find a horse that has the same size and build as that particular horse. Ask your riding teacher what size horse they would recommend for you if you have one already. According on your skill level, height, weight, and growing room, your teacher can help you choose what size horse you require.

How Long Have You Been Riding?

How long have you been in the horse industry? Are the well-behaved lesson horses the only horses you’ve ever been around or rode in your life? What level of expertise do you have when it comes to caring for and riding a horse? Know what to do if your horse has a foot abscess and needs to be rescued? If a horse bolts and takes off, do you know what to do with him or her? The questions above are not only excellent questions to ask yourself when determining the size horse you require, but they are also excellent questions to ask yourself in general when considering acquiring a horse.

The more time you spend with horses, the more expertise you get about how to handle horses of various shapes and sizes, regardless of their breed.

Horses that are taller than you may elevate their heads above your shoulders, making it more simpler for them to reject your directions and avoid your space.

Take these considerations into consideration and discuss them with your instructor. If you prefer a taller horse, your teacher may be able to provide you with a specific horse to train with in order to assist you become acclimated to working with a horse of a larger stature.

How Confident Are You in the Saddle?

While riding, do you ever feel like you’re completely out of control and that you’re bouncing about everywhere? Are you a confident rider who enjoys a tough horse, or would you prefer a horse that is reliable and safe? Having a desire for a decent, dependable horse is nothing to be embarrassed of; I’m more of the same myself. In rare cases, the size of the horse can have an impact on a rider’s confidence in the saddle. When it comes to horses, I am much more terrified by the prospect of starting or training a large animal, yet when it comes to ponies, I will jump on anything.

You should pay particular attention to this if you plan on beginning the horse or training a green horse.

It may, on the other hand, be quite gratifying!

How Strong Are You?

The larger the horse, the more the amount of strength you may require to keep it under control. Think about your physical stature and strength while deciding on the size of the horse you wish to ride. Let me be clear: there are many lovely large horses that have been taught really well and that respond admirably to riders of varying heights and weights. Of course, the polar opposite can also be found in some places. The consequences of not properly training a large horse in order for him to respect people and their cues are potentially disastrous.

Lesson horses are an excellent place to begin, especially because they are typically accompanied by a riding teacher.

What Size Horse Will Advance Your Future Riding Goals?

To handle a huge horse, you may need to exert more physical effort. When deciding on the size of the horse you desire, keep in mind your own height and strength. Never mind that there are many lovely large horses that have been taught exceptionally well and that respond admirably to riders of all sizes. The exact polar opposite is also true, as is the case here. The consequences of not properly training a large horse in order for him to respect people and their cues are potentially dire. Riding a range of various sized horses to assess where you stand on your strength is a terrific approach to gauge your ability.

What Types of Horses Are Used for What You Want to Do?

What breeds of horses are employed in the discipline in which you wish to achieve success? In most jumping rings and eventing circuits, you’ll find thoroughbreds, warmbloods, Hanoverians, Selle Français, and several other sorts of sport horses competing against one another. There will be Arabians, mustangs, and Akhal-Tekes competing in endurance. Quarter horses will predominate in the western competitions. If you want to achieve success in a certain discipline, you may begin by purchasing a horse that is specifically bred for the events and activities that you will be required to participate in.

In lower-level events, almost any horse or breed will perform admirably; but, when it comes to the major leagues, look for a horse that was specifically bred to compete in the discipline.

Does Ability Depend on Size When it Comes to Your Future Riding Goals?

When it comes to your future riding aspirations, does the ability of the horse depend on the size of the rider? Although a larger horse may be required to leap higher, little ponies are capable of performing at the highest levels of dressage, as well as other disciplines. Check to see whether the size of your horse correlates with greater performance in your chosen sport. I’m going to stick with ponies for as long as I possibly can. The horse I previously had was capable of competing in 4 ft jumpers, and the horse that I currently own is capable of taking first place in an intermediate dressage test and doing well in an endurance event.

  1. The likelihood is that you can educate a horse to be successful in any discipline if you can teach a pony to be successful in any discipline.
  2. Ultimately, when it comes to acquiring a horse, the size of the animal is critical.
  3. With your new horse, will you be able to increase in both size and skill?
  4. I produced this post, Choosing the Right Horse: 10 Expert Tips, to assist make the process a bit easier for those who are just starting out.

What Size Horse Should I Be Riding? Finding The Right Horse For Your Weight & Height

It’s possible that horse riding will be really enjoyable for you; however, if the horse you are riding isn’t the proper size for your height and/or weight, it won’t be at all enjoyable for the horse. Not only that, but it has the potential to do significant harm to the horse. A similar situation arises while riding an overly large horse, as you may discover that the horse is more stronger than you, and as a result is unable to maintain complete control over it. What type of horse should I be riding and what size should I be?

This will imply that the horse will be able to carry the rider as well as the heaviest of western saddles and trail accoutrements without straining or straining the animal.

Am I too heavy to ride a horse?

Horseback riding may be a lot of fun, but if the horse you’re riding isn’t the proper size for your height and/or weight, it won’t be much fun for the horse at all. That’s not all; it might also do a lot of damage to the horse itself. A similar situation arises while riding an overly large horse, as you may discover that the horse is more stronger than you, and as a result is unable to maintain complete control over the animal. When it comes to horse size, what do you recommend?

If a rider weighs at least 7 times the weight of the horse, the horse is considered to be the perfect size for that rider. This will imply that the horse will be able to carry the rider as well as the heaviest of western saddles and trail equipment without straining the animal’s muscles.

Am I too tall to ride a horse?

When it comes to riding, your height may not seem to make much of a difference at all, but in reality, it makes a far bigger impact than you may expect. If you’re very tall, you’ll probably discover that the horse is imbalanced, depending on the breed you’re looking at. The greater your height, the more the horse’s center of gravity will be shifted, and the more imbalanced the horse will be as a result of this. Horses with stockier, more substantial builds will be able to handle this better than horses with lighter, more sensitive builds.

While height is vital, the proportions of the rider are much more important.

In order for the rider’s legs to be comfortable in the stirrups when seated on a horse, they should neither be too much beneath the horse’s stomach, nor should they be too tall that the horse becomes top-heavy.

This is not the horse’s normal state.

What size horse should I be riding for my weight?

It is recommended that you choose a horse that weighs at least 7 times more than you, so that the horse can not only carry you, but also all of their tack and other equipment. No, it’s not feasible to declare that if you weigh a specific amount, you’ll need to ride on a horse of a given height. Consider that a 16-hand Thoroughbred will not be able to carry as much weight as a similar-sized Quarter Horse of the same height and height. As a basic guideline, the table below should provide you with an estimate of the weight of horse you would ideally want for your weight based on your height and weight.

Rider Weight(Kg/lbs/St) Minimum Horse Weight(Kg/lbs)
32 / 70 / 5 100 / 220
38 / 84 / 6 150 / 330
44 / 98 / 7 200 / 440
50 / 112 / 8 250 / 551
57 / 126 / 9 300 / 661
63 / 140 / 10 350 / 772
70 / 154 / 11 400 / 882
76 / 168 / 12 450 / 992
82 / 182 / 13 500 / 1102
89 / 196 / 14 550 / 1212
95 / 210 / 15 600 / 1322
101 / 224 / 16 650 / 1433
108 / 238 / 17 700 / 1543
114 / 252 / 18 750 / 1653
120 / 266 / 19 800 / 1763
127 / 280 / 20 850 / 1873
133 / 294 / 21 900 / 1984
139 / 308 / 22 950 / 2094
150 / 330 / 23 1000 / 2204

If you’re still not sure whether or not a horse is the proper size for you, you can always use the calculation below to determine whether or not they’re correct. It is crucial to remember, however, that because to the differences in bone structure between horses and ponies, this will only work on horses. Calculate which horses will be able to transport you comfortably: Weight of the horse plus the weight of the rider plus the weight of the equipment divided by the circumference of the cannon bone (the leg bone between the knee and the fetlock or ankle) is appropriateness.

What size horse should I be riding for my height?

The only way to truly evaluate if your height is a good match for a horse is to actually sit on one of them. Obviously, this seems like a ridiculous statement, but while height is significant, the proportions of your body are far more crucial. Even if you are extremely tall and have long legs but are shorter in the torso, this will almost likely not feel right after your feet are correctly placed in the stirrups, and if you are not sitting properly, the horse will become unbalanced as a result.

The measurement of your inseam, or inside leg, is more relevant than your total height since it is more accurate. To obtain this measurement, just measure from the floor to the inside top of your leg using a tape measure; this will provide you with your inseam measurement.

Inseam(inch / cm) Minimum Horse Height(hands / inches / cm)
24 / 61 10 / 40 / 101
26 / 66 10.3 / 41 / 104
28 / 71 11.2 / 45 / 114
30 / 76 12.2 / 49 / 124
32 / 81 13.1 / 52 / 132
34 / 86 14 / 56 / 142
36 / 91 15 / 60 / 152
38 / 96 15.3 / 61 / 155
40 / 101 16.2 / 64 / 162


It is a lot of fun to go horse riding, and now that you know how to pick the ideal horse for you, there is no reason why you shouldn’t be able to spend many hours having a good time in the saddle. What are you waiting for? There is a horse out there for everyone, so what are you waiting for? Enjoy!

See also:  How Much Do Horse Riding Lessons Cost? (Solved)

Further reading

  • It is a lot of fun to go horse riding, and now that you know how to pick the ideal horse for you, there is no reason why you shouldn’t be able to spend many hours in the saddle having a good time. What are you waiting for? There is a horse out there for everyone, so what are you doing sitting here? Enjoy!

Recommended products

Over the years, I’ve experimented with hundreds of different horse-related things, ranging from different blankets and halters to various treats. Others I’ve liked, some I’ve disliked, but I thought I’d share with you my top five all-time favorite items, the ones I never leave the house without while I’m working in the garden. Please find links to items (which are not listed in any particular order) that I believe are excellent in this article.

  • Mane & Tail Detangler– Even if you never show your horse, you’ll need to disentangle his tail (and maybe his mane as well) from time to time, which is always a difficult task! When I put a small amount of detangler through my horse’s tails every few days, I’ve discovered that it prevents them from becoming matted and makes combing them easier, even when they’re coated in muck. I’m not sure if I should mention it or not, but it also works wonderfully on my hair
  • I’m not sure how I feel about it. TAKEKIT Pro clippers are a good investment. Over the years, I’ve experimented with a variety of various clippers, and while some were clearly superior than others, I found them to be by far the most effective. However, for me, this is a positive attribute because it gives them the appearance of being more strong and long-lasting than many other clippers. Furthermore, because they have a variety of speeds, they are equally effective at cutting your horse’s back as they are at clipping his face. I also appreciate the fact that they come with a convenient travel bag, but I understand that this is not for everyone. They are made by a fantastic firm that is also wonderfully helpful, which is a big plus in these difficult economic times. The only thing I didn’t like about it was that it didn’t come with any oil, but it wasn’t a big deal because it’s not difficult to get lubricant elsewhere. Shire’s ball feeder– There are a plethora of boredom-busting toys available, but I prefer to use this one on a daily basis, regardless of whether or not my horses are feeling bored. Horse safe mirror– This is a strange one that many people are surprised about, but I like to put horse safe mirrors in the trailers as well as in the quarantine stalls to encourage my horses to problem solve. I reward them with treats (or pieces of fruit) when they do so, and it also mimics their natural grazing behavior, which helps to keep them calm and de-stressed. It helps to alleviate the sense of being alone by creating the illusion that other horses are around to provide company. Equine herd animals can get quite anxious when they are left alone, but with the use of these stick-on mirrors they will assume that at least one other horse is present with them, reducing their discomfort. This isn’t glamorous, but it’s critical for your horse’s health to be able to check its temperature on a regular basis, and a rectal thermometer is the most convenient method to do so, which is why I’ve included it on the list: Rectal thermometer

Shopping lists

Besides that, I’ve compiled a few shopping lists of necessities that I’ve found to be very useful over the years. Instead of lumping everything together in one long list, I’ve divided the listings into several sections for your convenience. I hope you found this post to be informative. If you have any information, I would really appreciate it if you could share it with me as it would be quite beneficial to me.

What Size Horse Do I Need: Guide To Finding The Right Size Horse

*This post may include affiliate links, which means that I may get a compensation if you make a purchase after clicking on one of the links I give (at no extra cost to you). Because I am an Amazon Associate, I receive money when people make eligible purchases. Please see mydisclaimer for more information on this subject. “Do I look like I’m too large for my horse?” Horse professionals cringe when they hear this question because it makes them feel uncomfortable. This question is frequently asked by riders who are aware that they are overly large but are unwilling to confess it.

  • A horse should not be expected to carry more than 20% of its own body weight.
  • In an ideal situation, the horse should be carrying less than 15% of its own body weight.
  • The problem of the rider-to-horse bodyweight ratio is one that has important implications for horse welfare.
  • Riders who are matched with horses of the appropriate size will be able to ride guilt-free and appreciate their horses more.
  • What happens if you ride a horse that is the wrong size?

Every decision we make has implications, just as there are consequences to everything else in life. In addition to having an affect on the horse, the size of the horse we choose to ride will have an impact on our performance in the sport we choose to engage in and our riding style.

Heavy Rider, Small Horse

It is the horse who will suffer if the rider is too hefty for their animal. They may exhibit heightened stress levels and will have back discomfort, as well as transitory lameness in certain cases. It is likely that the injury will become permanent, and the horse will no longer be fit enough to ride as a result. Inability to use the horse’s body appropriately results in decreased performance as a result of the impaired horse’s condition. Eventually, if the horse is in discomfort on every ride, it will begin to rebel.

An overburdened rider may lead a horse to groan, arch his or her back away from the rider, and spread its legs in order to retain its balance.

Tall Rider, Short Horse

In the case of a lightweight tall rider, it is doubtful that the horse will suffer bodily harm. The rider’s riding, on the other hand, will deteriorate as a result of compensating riding behaviors. When providing leg aids or riding with very low stirrups, tall riders will acquire a tendency of elevating their legs. A rider’s balance will need to be adjusted every time one of their legs is raised to contact the horse’s belly. A rider who utilizes short stirrups on a consistent basis will have a tendency to lean forward.

These riders will have difficulty riding in an elegant upright position, as a lengthy leg stance is required to counterbalance the body in order to maintain balance.

Short Rider, Broad Horse

When riding a wide horse, a rider with short legs will have difficulty getting their leg over the horse’s barrel. The hip flexor and adductor muscles are subjected to a tremendous amount of stress. The rider will arch their back in order to ease stress on the tense muscles in their neck and back. In contrast to a neutral spine posture, an arched spine is unable to effectively absorb the force of the horse’s movement. These bikers will have back and hip pain as a result of their riding.

Scientific Research Into Correct Horse Size

The bulk of the research are of limited scope. There is currently no precise guideline for determining the optimal rider-to-horse ratio to use. Two of these studies may be found here and here, respectively. The following is a synopsis of the findings of both studies:

  1. When undertaking vigorous activity, the burden should not exceed 15 percent of the horse’s body weight
  2. The load should be calculated as Tack + Rider Weight. It is reasonable to expect a horse to withstand moderate activity if the load is between 15 and 20 percent of the horse’s bodyweight. Rider height and saddle fit have a substantial impact on back discomfort and lameness in horses. When assessing how much weight a horse can comfortably carry, other variables (modifiers) must be taken into consideration.

What is the maximum weight that a horse can carry? There are 16 things to think about. It is quite hard to come up with a formula that can precisely predict the appropriate size horse for a particular rider. The majority of equations only take into consideration one or two variables. Their methodology does not include all of the variables that impact the optimal horse-to rider size ratio, nor do they present a full list of all of these variables.

The variables that influence a horse’s capacity to carry weight are separated into two categories: horse-related variables and rider-related variables. Horse-related variables are those that influence the horse’s ability to carry weight. Horse-Related Variables are those that have to do with horses.

  • Age, fitness, muscle development, thoracolumbar length, loin breadth, length and thickness of the cannon bone, and so on. Whether there is or isn’t any pre-existing lameness or spinal problems
  • Type, pace, and length of task that must be performed
  • Terrain for horseback riding
  • Fit for a saddle

Variables Affecting the Ride

  • Skill, fitness, balance, coordination, the rider’s relative height, and saddle fit are all important considerations.

Weight-Carrier Conformation

The Kentucky Equine Research Team (2008) conducted a research to determine the influence of particular structural characteristics on a horse’s capacity to bear weight, which they published in 2008. The four tests were completed according to a defined riding pattern at the walk, trot, and canter over a predetermined distance, followed by a four-day rest period. The factors under investigation assessed the horse’s response to carrying 15 percent, 20 percent, 25 percent, and 30 percent of their body weight in relation to various conformation features, and the results were published in the journal Equine Science.

  • When lifting heavy loads, the breadth of the loin is inversely related to the amount of muscular discomfort experienced. When a horse was carrying a heavier rider, the wider the loins, the less painful the horse was. Back length– The shorter the horse’s back, the greater his ability to withstand big loads
  • Yet, a short back necessitates the use of a short saddle. If the saddle does not properly fit the rider, the horse will suffer from back discomfort as a result. The length and circumference of the cannon bone are important because the shorter and thicker the cannon bone is, the better the horses’ tolerance for carrying big loads. When it comes to horse weight-carrying capabilities, it has been shown that height is completely immaterial. The fact that taller horses tend to weigh more, and therefore can carry more weight, had no effect on the proportion of the horse’s body weight that it could carry. Musculature– A well-developed paraspinal musculature is an important component that helps to preserve the spinal cord and spine. Rider weight is dispersed across an increased surface area by well-developed muscle, which reduces localized pressure while also preserving the spine. However, while this conformation is great for weight-bearing, it can make saddle-fitting a challenging task. Many of these horses will suffer from back ache, which will not be caused by their rider’s weight, but rather by poor saddle fit.

Horse-Rider Size Ratio According To Discipline

Depending on the discipline, different conformations of horses are preferred, and the horse is required to execute a variety of tasks for varying lengths of time over a variety of terrain. A consequence of these variances is that the optimal horse-to-rider ratio varies.

Western Riding

Quarter horses are frequently used in western riding competitions. The height of these horses is usually between 14.0hh and 15.0hh on average. It is usual and acceptable to see people, even males, riding these little horses, and it is even encouraged. Because of his tiny size, it is simpler for him to climb on and off the horse several times while working on the ranch. Sharp turns, spins, and sliding stops are all made easier for the horse as a result of this training method. The conformation of a quarter horse is the epitome of optimum weight-carrier shape.


Even though Arabs aren’t built like heavyweights with bulging muscles, they tend to have short cannon bones and backs. Arabs are known to carry 20 – 30% of their body weight over distances of 100 kilometers or more in a single day. Only a few research have looked into the Arabs’ capacity to bear a lot of weight over long distances. It is possible that riding bigger, stronger part-bred Arabs will be more comfortable for heavyweight category riders.

English Riding

Many adult English riders prefer horses that are taller and longer-legged, such as light breeds. The horses are well-suited for covering the long distances necessary in showjumping and eventing competitions. They have the physical presence to command attention on the dressage ring. These sport horses are better suited for showjumping or dressage competitions, but they are not suitable for carrying heavy loads. As a result, most English riders will opt to ride a horse that is taller than their western equivalents.

Classical Dressage

When it comes to classical dressage horses, the Lipizzaner, Andalusian, or Lusitano are popular choices for the classical dressage rider. These horses are better weight bearers than many other light-bred sport horses, which is a significant advantage. Traditional dressage horses are typically worked in hand, which puts taller horses at a competitive disadvantage. It is preferable for these horses to be 20cm shorter at the withers than the rider’s height when standing.

Riders at the Spanish Riding School must be roughly 172cm tall and have a thin fit frame in order to be accepted. These riders are mounted on Lipizzaner horses, who stand an average height of 15.2 feet.


Riding an Iberian horse breed such as the Lipizzaner, Andalusian, or Lusitano is common among classical dressage riders. Compared to many other light breed sport horses, these horses are better at carrying a greater load. Traditional dressage horses are typically worked in hand, which puts taller horses at a disadvantage in the competition. At the withers, the optimal height of these horses should be 20cm less in length than that of the rider. Riders at the Spanish Riding School must be roughly 172cm tall and have a thin fit shape in order to be considered.


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