Friday, March 21, 2014

Tack Review: Girth Edition

Today's tack review is a two-for-one deal. Lex has two girths, and I don't have as much to say about girths as I do about bridles, so I figured I'd do both.

Even though Lex is only 15.3hh (maybe 15.3 and a half?) and wears a cob-size bridle, she's built like a tank. She wears a 54" girth. Since I bought her accidentally, I didn't have my whole huge collection of horsey crap in Florida, and the only girth I had was the one I used for Duchess, who is a delicate little lady from nose to tail. I had to get Lex a girth right away, so I read some reviews and went with the SmartPak Air+ Neoprene Girth.

What it costs: $49.95 on SmartPak
What it paid: $44.96 via SmartPerks

Modeling the Air+ back in April 2013.
This was kind of a break from normal for me, because it's neoprene and I am a leather junkie. The flip side of it has holes in the neoprene, which I guess is supposed to make it more breathable, but she still gets incredibly sweaty under the girth even when she doesn't sweat much under the saddle. I do like that I can hose it down and clean it up, and after about ten months of use, it looks great. It's worth the price if this is what you want. I'll probably still use it if we're going to go on a trail ride through the mud or something.

 I had to get another girth because the Air+ is too wide in the middle to use with her standing martingale, and she needs a standing martingale so she won't break my nose. So I went to the consignment tack store and found this:

What it costs: $130 on Adams Horse Supplies
What I paid: $50 "used" at the tack store, but pretty much brand new.

I LOVE IT. It fulfills all my tack snob needs: it's leather, it's fancy stitch, it's the same color as my bridle. There are probably nicer versions of this girth out there, but for $50, I'm thrilled. I think it's worth the retail price, but I do try to avoid paying full price for anything. I like girths with elastic on both ends because I think they make girthy horses a little happier sometimes, but my trainer says they slip more, so we'll see. I have a crappy old leather girth with elastic on just one side and she HATES it. I've only been using this for a couple months, but we'll see how it holds up.

I hadn't thought much about girths before I got Lex. I have a feeling I'm going to wind up with something fleece-lined eventually, just to complete the triad. I don't see a lot of girth reviews out there, and I think it's because they're really pretty basic, but girths should be comfortable and do their job. I think the Tolouse is better because it's leather and neoprene is kind of hot and annoying.

What girth do you use? Do you care about girths?


  1. I had the same M Toulouse girth but had to sell it because it was too small for Miles... and I cried a little on the inside.

  2. I haven't tried a neoprene girth because Simon is sensitive so I use fleece. Have a used leather girth for shows but would love to upgrade to fancy stitch!

  3. K has a leather HV Polo girth for the dressage saddle (which i now rarely use on her) which came with the saddle when i bought it second had from my yard friend. My two GP girths are neoprene, brown leather look for Kika with elastic on both sides and black with elastic on one side for N. Cannot remember the makes for either of them although K's may be a wintec and was honestly only bought because it matched her saddle & bridle and I was being a matchy-matchy freak.
    Nancy is too big for that girth to fit her when I ride her in the GP (rarely as it puts me in an awful position on her). I most often ride her in the dressage saddle again with a wintec girth which a friend gave me for free as she didn't use it (too big for her delicate mare)

  4. I've played with those smartpak girths recently and I think they're pretty cool. That said, mr man is pretty damn sensitive, so it's just fleexe for us so far. It's working and not causing problems, and I hesitate to change that up.

    I do love a good fancy stitch girth though. What a steal!!