Which Is The Best Cinch On The Market?

While English saddles use a girth to keep the saddle firmly on the horse, Western riders tend to use a cinch, which attaches to a single wide leather strap on either side of the saddle. A cinch has advantages over a girth in a few ways; firstly that a girth can be slimmer than a cinch and therefore may cut into the horse’s barrel, where a cinch is wider and will spread the load.

Girths can be prone to slipping, where a cinch is designed to be used for some seriously fast, often twisting and turning riding, such as roping and barrel racing, so it needs to be extra grippy to prevent the saddle from slipping.

Top Rated Cinch Reviews

If you are new to Western riding, or you simply want to get yourself a new cinch for your existing set up, why not have a look through these three fantastic products we have picked out for you?

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Cinches

Price

Professionals Choice Equine Smx Western Cinch (Size 32-Inch, Black) TOP PICK: Professionals Choice Western Cinch

A great, no nonsense, very sturdy cinch.

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100% Alpaca and Mohair Twist Roper Cinch (28") Alpaca and Mohair Twist Roper Cinch

Great for speedy turns, roping, racings.

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Weaver Leather Mohair Blend 27 Strand Roper Smart Cinch Weaver Leather Mohair Blend Smart Cinch

A great product, made by a great company.

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1. Professionals Choice Equine Smx Western Cinch Review

Professionals Choice Equine Smx Western Cinch (Size 32-Inch, Black)

This is a very sturdy cinch, made from highly non-slip materials that are designed not only to keep your saddle firmly in place but also to be comfortable on your horse.

Pros

  • Neoprene backing creates natural lubrication – This material is designed to make your horse sweat, thus eliminating galling and girth sores. It also doesn’t harbour bacteria, unlike some other cinch materials.
  • Buckles and D-rings made from stainless steel – This metal is extremely strong and durable, so it won’t break or wear away, and it certainly won’t rust.
  • Easy to keep clean – This cinch is very simple to wash, you just remove the neoprene from the webbing and wash the two separately, meaning you can clean in all the little hidden bits.
  • Molds to your horse’s shape – The nature of neoprene is that it compresses when cinched, making it a perfect fit for whatever size or shape of horse you have. It will also mould itself to your horse’s body after just a few rides.

Cons

  • May slip slightly at roller – This roller makes cinching smooth and easy, but some users have reported that there may be a slipping issue.

Recommendation

A great, no nonsense product that will stick to your horse like glue, and help your saddle stay firmly in place. It is also available in two different colors so you can match it to your existing tack.

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2. 100% Alpaca and Mohair Twist Roper Cinch Review

100% Alpaca and Mohair Twist Roper Cinch (28")

This beauty really looks the part; it is made from Alpaca and Mohair and has a real Western look to it. If you want a great cinch that looks like it stepped off the set of a cowboy movie, go for this one!

Pros

  • 27 hand twisted strands – The craftsmanship that has gone into this cinch is truly beautiful, and because it is all handmade you know that the workmanship is strong and built to last too.
  • Mohair and Alpaca are natural fibres which are great at wicking – Your horse won’t get uncomfortably hot and sweaty in this cinch, as it is made from two fibres that actively remove sweat from against the body. They also encourage comfortable natural movement.
  • Stainless roller buckles make cinching easy – These smooth buckles will help fasten the cinch much more easily than many others.
  • Has a great lifespan – While no product can be guaranteed for the rest of time, you want a product to last if you are spending your hard earned dollars on it. This one is designed to be durable and should last your for a great many rides to come!

Cons

  • Colors may vary – Because of the handmade nature of this product, you may find that the cinch that arrives on your doorstep is a slightly lighter or darker shade than you ordered.

Recommendation

This cinch is great for speedy turns, roping, racing, or just everyday riding. It will keep your saddle in place and your horse comfortable, and what could be better than that?

CLICK TO CHECK PRICE ON AMAZON


3. Weaver Leather Mohair Blend 27 Starnd Smart Cinch Review

Weaver Leather Mohair Blend 27 Strand Roper Smart Cinch

Weaver Leather are a very well known and well loved company who produce high quality products. If you are already a fan you will be thrilled to know that they make cinches!

Pros

  • Mohair blend is highly durable and good at wicking – Mohair is a fantastic fabric, being incredibly hard wearing and also great at keeping the inevitable sweat away from your horse’s skin.
  • Patented Roll Snug cinch buckle – Weaver have developed a great cinching system which is so innovative that they patented it! It is designed to make cinching easier and there’s no doubt that it requires far less effort.
  • Stainless steel buckle and dees – Stainless steel is the only metal that should ever be used for tack – it is strong, will last forever and is guaranteed to not rust.
  • Wide and comfortable for the horse – Unlike some girths which are skinny and can cut into the horse behind the elbows, this one is wide and so distributes any tightness.

Cons

  • Buckle may be a little on the large size – A bigger buckle is easier for cinching but bear in mind that it may rub your horse’s skin.

Recommendation

A great cinch, made by a great company. This cinch will be a welcome addition to your tack, whether you use it every day or just on the odd occasion your saddle needs a little more stability.

CLICK TO CHECK PRICE ON AMAZON


Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some questions you should ask yourself when choosing the right cinch for your horses saddle.

1. How do you take care of a Western cinch?

Being under your horse’s belly and in direct contact with your horse’s skin and coat naturally makes the cinch prone to getting dirty. You’ll need to clean it regularly to remove built up moisture, mud, hair and sweat. A dirty girth can cause your horse to experience a fungal infection known as girth itch.

Always be sure to store your cinch in such a way that air can circulate around it so that it can dry completely while it is in storage. Whenever you see that your girth is very dirty or sweaty, you should spray it down with the water hose and hang it up in the open air to dry.

From time to time, you’ll want to do a thorough washing.

2. What material should the cinch be made of?

A Western cinch or girth can be made of:

  • Neoprene
  • Mohair
  • Fleece

3. Why should you choose a fleece cinch?

This type of cinch is soft and comfortable for your horse, and it’s easy to care for. These cinches are very easy to wash as you can simply toss them in the washer. When you take it out, brush it and lay it flat to dry.

Keep in mind that this kind of cinch is rather thick, so it may interfere with your cueing your horse with your calves and heels.

4. Why should you choose a mohair cinch?

This is a traditional material that is more breathable than fleece and also dries out more easily. A mohair cinch you should be hand washed using mild soap and water. Rinse the cinch thoroughly and lay it flat to dry.

5. Why should you choose neoprene?

Neoprene is a very grippy material that gives you a lot of security in the saddle. It is also very easy to keep clean because you can simply spray it with a disinfecting and antifungal solution and wipe it clean. You can also toss a neoprene cinch into the washer if you wish.

On the downside, if your horse has sensitive skin this material can be hot and uncomfortable and may cause fungal infections. There are neoprene cinches that are perforated with holes to allow good air circulation.

6. What size cinch should you get?

Western cinches are usually available in lengths ranging from 26 to 34 inches. They come in two inch increments. Measure the distance from the dee ring on one side of the saddle to the dee ring on the other while the saddle is sitting securely on your horse’s back. To do this, you’ll need an old-fashioned cloth measuring tape and some assistance to hold the tape in place on one side while you run it under your horse’s belly.

Once you know how far it is from one dee ring to the other, you’ll want subtract 6 or 8 inches from that total to account for the latigo strap that will hold the cinch in place.

For example, if it is 40 inches from dee ring to dee ring, the size of your cinch should be 32 or 34 inches. It’s better to get a slightly smaller cinch than a slightly larger one.

7. What’s the best style of Western cinch?

This really depends upon the kind of riding you do and your horse’s conformation.

The most common style is the straight cinch which is appropriate for most types of riding. This is also usually the most affordable type of cinch.

The Roper cinch is a style that is wider in the center. This provides a more secure hold that is appropriate for very active and challenging riding such as roping, barrel racing and the like. Additionally, if your horse has low withers, a Roper will help keep your saddle securely in place.

A contoured style is tapered to avoid chafing where the horse‘s front legs meet with the torso or “underline“. Contoured cinches also allow for a great deal more motion and are an ideal choice for trail challenges and Western dressage.

A double layer cinch is extra thick and adds a little more padding. This type of cinch is usually made of mohair and may be available in Roper styles and tapered styles.

8. How long should a good cinch last?

As with all of your tack, if you take good care of it, it will last for years. As soon as you do see wear and tear such as cracked neoprene, matted mohair or frayed fleece, you should replace it. Additionally, damaged hardware is always a sign of a need for replacement.


Conclusion

A cinch is a great addition to your Western riding set up. It is kind and comfortable on the horse, as well as being highly functional and great at its job – namely stopping the saddle from flipping all over the place. Looking for a new cinch? Look no further! Whether you are after a nice wide cinch or are happier with a narrower one; a blend of mohair and alpaca or Neoprene; we’ve got you covered.

Sam Ellis
Sam is a founder and editor of Horses & Foals. In personal life he is a proud father of a boy and twin girls. He believes it is more important than ever before to encourage children to experience the joy of horse riding. Horses make as much sense as the sunshine in our world.


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