How To Saddle A Horse
How to Saddle a Horse: This videos shows you everything you need to know in order to safely fit the animal's saddle and bridle.
This is how to tack up, or some people call it 'saddle up' a horse. We are going to look at how to put the saddle on and we're going to look at how to put his bridle on. With the horse nice and secure, with his head collar on, we can put the saddle on first. This is because he hasn't got anything from the bridle that is going to attach to his saddle.
So first of all you need to put on a numner. Some people call this a saddle cloth, some people call it a numner, but it goes underneath the saddle to stop the horse from getting too hot and sweaty under the saddle and to stop the saddle rubbing. First of all, just put the numner on, a little bit higher than where the saddle is going to go, because we are going to slide it back into position in a second to make sure all the hair is lying in the right direction.
So making sure it's the right way around, with the straps at the front, just put the saddle on nice and gently. Always tell the horse that something's going to happen. Lowering it down nice and gently, lift the numner up into the pommel and just slide the saddle back into position. This way you can be sure that all the hair is in the right direction and it's absolutely comfortable for the horse.
Then we're going to make sure that the numner is nice and secure so when we're riding it doesn't slip off. So just putting this through the saddle straps. Okay, this is the girth. This is the most important bit of kit because this is what is going to hold your saddle on and make sure it doesn't fall off. Always make sure, before you do anything, that you check to see that your girth is nice and secure and there are no bits of leather broken.
It's a sign of a good yard if the tack is in good condition. If you go to a riding stables and the tack is in a bad position then this can be a sign that it might be dangerous to ride there and also if their tack's not in good condition then obviously they are possibly not looking after their horses as well as they could be.
So the girth goes through the straps on the numner as well and attaches to the saddle. Always use the first strap and the second or third strap. As you can see here, the second and third strap is attached together and the first strap is on its own. The reason behind this, so if one breaks you've still got a back up. If you attach the girth just to these two straps here and this broke, then your girth would come away. So for safety reasons attach it to the first and the second or the third.
Then we're going to go around the other side and secure the girth. And you go around, again making sure the numner is nice and tucked up into the pommel so it doesn't rub onto his back. And again making sure you secure the nummer. Okay, you might need to make some adjustments to make sure it's far enough forward. Make sure the saddle sits so when the girth is attached, it lies just behind the leg.
A good fitting saddle will sit nice and comfortably on his back. You should be able to slide the hand underneath the saddle and there should be plenty of clearance above his wither. The saddle should be the correct length as well. It shouldn't sit too far back on his loins. Again tucking this under the numner so it doesn't come loose and because I attached it to the first and the third on the other side, I'm going to attach it to the first and the third on this side, making sure it's nice and secure.
Now, some horses like to breathe out when you're doing up their girth so before you get on it's very important that you recheck it and make sure it's nice and tight. Okay, now we're going to have a look at the bridle so I'm just going to make sure I don't walk too close to his back legs. Again the bridle, like the saddle, is always put on from the left hand side.
Okay, so we're going to undo our quick release knot and just have it resting through the loop so if he panics when he's having his bridle put on, he can pull away but I've still got time to catch him. Okay,