Online Tack and Horse Equipment Guide: English Breastplate

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Eventing breastplateJust like western breast collars, English breastplates are primarily
used to help prevent a saddle from slipping back, out of the ideal position. Horses
with certain conformation issues, like steep withers that abruptly slope to a
deep dip in their spine, are candidates for a breastplate. So are horses with
low, flat withers. Yet keep in mind that a breastplate should not be used to
fix problems caused by an ill-fitting saddle, a too-loose girth or an
inadequate saddle pad.

English breastplates come in two basic styles. One combines heavy-duty
elastic with the leather, enabling it to stretch across the front of the
horse’s chest and function during intense equestrian sports like eventing, polo
and show jumping. For extra security it buckles around the girth on each side,
beneath the flap of the saddle. The more traditional leather breastplate, used
for schooling and hunter classes, snaps to dees located on either side of the
saddle’s pommel. An additional strap then goes between the horse’s front legs
and slips around the center of the girth. The large metal ring in the center of
these breastplates is a bonus. Martingale attachments and draw reins can be
snapped in place and quickly removed as needed.

Back to HorseChannel’s Online Tack and Horse Equipment Guide

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