English vs Western Riding

Sometimes when I tell people I ride horses, they think I’m a cowboy, and other times they think I’m a jockey! The English vs Western riding confusion is one that nearly every non-horsey person can relate to. What’s the difference and why does it matter?


English vs Western Riding

* Origins * Tack * Disciplines * Breeds


English saddles can be seen, in some form or another, all the way back to medieval times.  No, these saddles don’t nearly look like English saddles do today, but they are where our modern saddles got their origin.


There are many differences in English and Western tack, but the easiest to identify are the saddles.  Western saddles are big, often have flat bottoms lined with a soft material, have horns (like a handle on the front ...


English riding and Western riding have very different competitive disciplines.  Western riding is used for disciplines like reining, cutting, barrel racing, and western pleasure.  Reining and cutting are used to emulate important skills ...


There are also different breeds of horses that are suitable for these different types of riding.  For example, the Quarter Horse is known for being an extremely popular western mount.  Think about why ...

There are many differences between English and Western riding, and both styles have accomplished great things and produced incredible horses and riders over the years.


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