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An Overview of the Two Most Common Styles of Horseback Riding

If you’re new to horseback riding or are just starting to learn about horses in general, it won’t take long before you realize that there’s a lot to know! Horses are complex animals that have been around for thousands of years and people have used them for work, sport, and as pets. It’s easy to become overwhelmed trying to learn all of the things you need to know about horses, so in today’s blog from Pink Flamingo Stables, we’re going to start with some basics — and an overview of the most common styles of horseback riding. This is something that everyone interested in horses should know. Keep reading, and if you want to learn more about horses or would like to take horseback riding lessons in Lake Worth, contact our stables to reserve a date!

Why Learn About Riding Style?

As we’ve mentioned before, people use horses for a variety of purposes, the two most popular forms of riding style (English and Western) differ because of their purpose. While it’s surely possible to learn both styles of riding, each one requires different equipment, involves different techniques, and you will likely wear different styles of clothing. So, to choose which style of riding you’d like to learn first, think about how you will use your horse in the future —are you going to be working around a ranch or farm, or are you interested in competitive riding for sport? Your answer will determine the style of riding you will want to become most familiar with.

English Horseback Riding

The English style of horseback riding has its origins in the military cavalries but transformed over the years into a competitive sport. Since English riding is intended for sport and not long-distance riding, the saddles are designed to be lighter and smaller to give the rider closer contact with the horse’s back and to maximize mobility. Another distinction of English riding is that the reins are held in both hands at all times and are used to guide the speed and direction of the horse.

Western Horseback Riding

The Western-style of horseback riding has its roots in cattle ranching where horses would be ridden at high speeds to round up cattle over long distances. Because of this, the saddle used in Western riding is noticeably different. It’s much larger to provide a deep, more comfortable seat, and it also has a horn on the top of the saddle that is used to control the cattle after they are roped. Finally, the reins and tack vary significantly from English riding in that they are designed to allow the rider to control the horse with one hand.

Learn More About Both Styles With Horseback Riding Lessons at Pink Flamingo Stables

There’s so much more to learn about both of the major styles of horseback riding that we simply cannot cover it all in one blog. If you really want to experience first-hand the differences between them so you can decide which style suits you best, contact Pink Flamingo Stables in Lake Worth to book a horseback riding lesson or purchase a lesson package.