I have never been “the little guy” in any group. I’m an easy 5’10” and wear heels for work a good portion of my life. And I was almost 5’8” in 7th grade, so being the giraffe was always in the cards. In line with that, since I can remember I’ve been riding large horses. To some degree it was the hunter/jumper complex that bigger is better. The rest was simply finding a horse that my 36” long inseam didn’t miniaturize.
My history is a series of 16hh+ horses. As follows…
I remember that buying O, at 16hh was considered “smallish” for me. You can see in the picture just above that obviously the mare was plenty big. But it’s a culture thing in Hunters. People seem to love the giant, rolling stride horses.
Then I started riding this mare. Dee is just over 15.1hh (I think), and while I love to call her shorty/mini/pony/hony there is nothing this little horse can’t do. Our lessons do nothing to challenge her; she’s sporty, clever and cute on the flat.
And in being so, she has totally changed how I see horses. How I see any future horses. I’m not going to shrink anytime soon, so being tall will always factor into my rides. But, if that means that maybe I just need to be more careful with my upper body at the fence-I don’t see any problems with that.
So for the first time in my 20-odd years of life, I’m the little guy. Or rather, we are. I’m choosing to embrace it, laugh at it, and then continue on my merry way. I have no great ambition to challenge the bigger is better hunter complex, except in my own mind…and perhaps those who love this little horse as much as I do.