PARTNERS FOR THE RIDE
- About The American Saddlebred
- Young Adult
- Sport Horse / Vesatility Program
Today’s American Saddlebred
The American Saddlebred personifies the ultimate performer matched with the most personable partner! A thrilling show horse, a loyal companion, and an incredible athlete, the American Saddlebred is a horse for everyone.
They are easy to spot with their proud, upright carriage with neck arched, a large expressive eye, and graceful ears alert and forward. The ideal American Saddlebred is well-proportioned and presents a beautiful overall picture. You will notice these features most when they are looking for the opportunity to meet new people, most Saddlebreds favorite activity! American Saddlebreds are patient and forgiving partners that are often ridden or driven by beginner adults and young children.
Saddlebreds typically stand between 15.1 and 16.3 hands in height and can be of any color ranging from black, bay, grey, and chestnut to palomino and pinto.
As a trotting breed, all American Saddlebreds perform the three standard gaits of walk, trot, and canter. The breed standard for movement should be fluid, animated, and with clear-balanced cadence.
Some American Saddlebreds have the ability to be trained to perform the two additional gaits exhibited in the five-gaited division. The slow gait and rack are each a four-beat gait with each of the horse's hooves striking the ground separately. These gaits like the breed’s walk, trot, and canter should be fluid, animated and balanced.
Disciplines & Uses
As a trotting breed that has been a trusted partner for centuries in a wide array of equestrian sports, there are no limits to what an American Saddlebred can do! The breed’s willing attitude, big heart, and bravery make it a suitable candidate for a variety of disciplines and riders.
Their animated style and brilliance in the show ring have helped them epitomize the saddle seat discipline for every division from performance to pleasure and professional trainers to young children. Breed shows also regularly offer driving, western, hunt seat, equitation, and trail classes. Outside of breed shows, they also excel in combined driving, dressage, endurance riding, eventing, western dressage, jumping, and more. The American Saddlebred with its kind and willing nature is a perfect horse for the whole family to enjoy as companions and trail horses as well!
The Horse America Made
Rex McDonald with George Ford Morris riding
The American Saddlebred has a long and proud history. The American Saddlebred became a recognized breed evolving from the Kentucky Saddler to the Saddle Horse in the 1800s. This breed was created through the refinement of prominent Thoroughbred and Trotting Horse foundation sires that crossed with Canadian Pacers, Hackneys, Morgan Horses and more to develop the breed officially organized by the American Saddle Horse Breeders Association in 1891.
From the battlefields of the American colonies to the bright lights of Madison Square Garden, the American Saddlebred has trotted to a tremendous legacy as the “Horse America Made.” The breed’s inherent presence, athleticism, and grace inspired the start of American horse shows, America’s first breed registry organization, and helped cultivate the horse and human relationship in the United States of America.
On their way to defining the idea of the “Ultimate Show Horse” they have also helped the US Army Equestrian Team compete in the Olympics until the 1940s, claimed some of the highest recorded rides in distance riding history and worked to develop the national park system in the American west.
Go Behind the Saddlebred Scenes
We welcome you to learn more about the American Saddlebred and Half Saddlebred through the American Saddlebred Horse & Breeders Association members and events. We invite you to follow our Facebook, Instagram, TikTok and YouTube to get more Saddlebred Scenes and learn how you can start trotting towards your #asbdreams!