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Horses/tightening the cinch too much


hello Dorothy. in the morning, while fastening the saddle, my instructor tightened the girth too tight where i was unable to fit my fingers under the belly of the horse. may i know what happens if i tighten the cinch too much?

Hello Rohit,

I think you do not trust your instructor.  If that is the case, get another one. Go to a different stable.

When you first tighten the girth, the horse usually expands its chest by taking a deep breath.  Before you mount, you must check the girth.  It has to be tight enough for you to step in the stirrup and climb up.

When you sit in the saddle, reach down and you will find that the girth is loose because the horse lets out a breath and the weight in the saddle causes it to spread a bit.  So you must either reach down and tighten it again or have someone do it for you.  This is something you must learn to do for yourself.

A loose girth means a loose saddle which means it may slip.  So do not get it too tight, but get it tight enough.  This is something you will have to experiment to find the right thing.  And sometimes the horse may gain weight and you will use  a different girth strap hole.


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Dorothy K Morris


I now live in Tucson, AZ. My expertise is in training and rehabilitating horses, and training riders for combined training for over 40 years, in Virginia and California. This includes dressage, cross country obstacles and show jumping. In my many years of experience and endless study of Classical theory, and my hands-on retraining horses,I have accummulated much knowledge of the different personalities of horses and how to approach their rehabilitation. At my age, I do not ride as much as I used to, but I don't see why I have to waste the experience I have. I can answer certain questions about starting young horses in English riding: dressage, jumping, cross country obstacles and basic equitation. I can help with rehabilitation of spoiled or difficult horses; however, many problems require sustained riding instruction/training and I cannot do this online. Some issues need to be observed to come to a correct diagnosis. If your problem is of this type, please find a qualified instructor/trainer. I cannot give riding lessons via email.


Experience in the area: Over 40 years of English riding experience, including Fox Hunting in Virginia where I earned my colors with the Blue Ridge Hunt, training young horses for hunting and/or eventing. Coached a rider from her beginning at Training Level Combined tests through her competition at two Junior International competition Three Day Events. She rode my horse that I also started and trained her to ride. This combination competed in the World Championship Three Day in Lexington, KY in 1978. I trained another horse (TB) through 3rd Level Dressage and jumping. He eventually competed at Advanced level Three Day. I have reschooled several horses with difficulties ranging from running away to running backward, to not allowing a bridle to be put on, to kicking out at the farrier, being "too much on the muscle over jumps", barn sour, etc

National Society Daughters of the Revolution (DAR)

Six novels (I am also a novelist)

Some college. Endless study of Classical Theory and training methods.

Awards and Honors
Who's Who of American Women, Who'w Who in America, Past Board of Directors FDIC-NACM

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