Can You Ride A Clydesdale? Get CLARITY Here!

What is a Clydesdale?

The Clydesdale is a Scotland-breed horse with enormous strength, size, and gentleness. Because of the strength and size, can you ride a Clydesdale? Primarily, the Clydesdale works well when drafting work and pulling carriages. Many horse lovers have developed an interest in getting more from this horse.

Let us dive deeper:

Can You Ride a Clydesdale?

Yes, you may ride a Clydesdale, and the experience is definitely out of this world. These horses are enormous but relatively easy to ride. Are Clydesdales good for riding? With an easygoing temperament and willingness to comply with people, you may have the best time riding a Clydesdale.

Preparations Before Riding a Clydesdale

Before riding a Clydesdale, there are several steps that you need to take. Most of these steps assure your safety and pleasure because of the Clydesdale horse size. Below are some of the main steps to take before taking out your Clydesdale:

  1. Get yourself ready
  2. Tack up your Clydesdale
  3. Put on the harness
  4. Mount your Clydesdale
clydesdale horse in the paddock

Getting Yourself Ready

Getting ready to ride a Clydesdale is one of the primary things to do. First, you need to wear long sleeves clothing to aid your safety. Long sleeve clothing prevents chafing or rubbing, which is a common scenario that comes in when riding. Due to the chafing and rubbing, your pants should also not be too big or loose.

When riding a Clydesdale, loose clothing on your body may lead to different injuries. Once any loose part of your coat gets entangled in the saddle or other sections of the trail, a potential disaster may be in place. Before taking your Clydesdale for a ride, remember to wear tight pants that stretch a little.

The tight stretchy pants should have patches on the inner sections of the knee. The patches help improve grip. For the best Clydesdale riding experience, consider jeans. Your boots should have little heels.

The little heels help with getting that perfect grip in the stirrups. Your boots on this horse should also cover your ankles perfectly for maximum protection. On Clydesdale, you may wear sneakers or other running shoes if you are not a boots lover. You should also remember to wear a safety helmet. The helmet is very important due to safety.

You need to make sure that your helmet does not snuggle around. This safety helmet must fit you perfectly. The helmet should be tight enough on your head as well. Remember that comfortability when riding a Clydesdale is key. You may also use a bicycle helmet if you can’t access a special horse helmet.

Tack Up Your Clydesdale

Tacking up your Clydesdale is one step that assures maximum comfort and safety. You must begin by checking the pad and the saddle and ensuring they fit perfectly. The saddle and pad must also not have any dirt or foreign objects. Make sure you look carefully on the pad and saddle for tangles and objects.

You must approach your Clydesdale from the left side when placing your saddle. You should also put the saddle in place slowly. You need to place the pad at the front section of the Clydasdals withers. The withers is the highest section of the horse’s back. Remember to let go of the saddle slowly after correctly putting it into place.

You may also smell the saddle to your Clydesdale before putting it on the back. If the Clydesdale is quite unfamiliar with the saddle making it smell may make attaching simpler. Carefully hook the stirrups over the saddle horn and correctly adjust them into place. Fasten any other accessory equipment to the Clydesdale or the saddle.

Put on the Bridle

You must check your harness to ensure the straps are well in place. Before riding a Clydesdale, you must ensure you do not twist or tangle anything. Any entanglements may result in some sort of injury when riding. Confirming the place of straps and harnesses also assures you of an easy time when putting on the harness.

Insert the bit inside the mouth of your Clydesdale by inserting your index finger on the front of your Clydesdale’s mouth. Slide the bit in so it sits on the upper section of the tongue once the horse opens its mouth. Pull your right hand to secure it as you conduct the operation.

Buckle up the throat latch strap around the Clydesdale’s head. This throat latch plays a vital role in keeping the harness around the head. Remember to consider the horse’s breathing; thus, don’t fasten the leather too tightly around the throat. Once you have buckled, you should easily fit your fist around the neck and the strap.

Mount Your Clydadel

Make sure your Clydadale is in a perfectly safe place before backing. The horse should be in a place where nothing can spook it. Avoid any place near people, fences, and buildings. If something scares your Clydesdale, it may cause injuries.

Due to the size of the Clydesdale, make sure you use a mounting block when getting on top. When mounting, it is important to put the reins over the head of the Clydesdale and put the block on the left side. Remember to use the stairs to get on your Clydesdale With ease and zero provocation.

The mounting blocks will put less strain on the straps, thus retaining the comfortability of the Clydesdale. With the climbing block, you also have little chance of slipping, thus retaining your safety. Stand on the left side of your horse and grasp the reins using your left hand. Holding the reins with your left hand assures you of full control until you get on top.

Use your left foot on the left stirrup and carefully make the climb. Remember to place your boot at the edge of the stirrup. You may hold the saddle a little but not so tightly to ensure your safety. The saddle may improve your grip and make you more steady when climbing.

After getting on top of your Clydesdale, you need to slowly lower yourself into the saddle. Make sure that you have the reins and the stirrups in both hands. With these instructions, you may start riding your Clydesdale one step at a time. While on the horse, remember that it may buck or jump when you startle it.

The Clydesdale Horse Price

So how much does a Clydesdale cost? Most of the Clydesdales go for around $2,500 to $5,000. On some occasions, there are some Clydesdales that may go for as low as $1,000. The prices of the Clydesdales all depend on several factors. Below are some of the main factors that affect the Clydesdale horse price:

  • Size
  • Age
  • Bloodlines
  • Quality
  • Color and markings
  • Level of training

The top-level Clydasdales may sell for higher prices which may go up to the price of vehicles. Some of these horses may also have markings that significantly improve their natural appearance. Such attractive color markings tend to make the prices go even higher. The price is slightly higher if a Clydadel horse is in perfect health.

You can also get the Clydesdale horse for much lower prices of around $1,000 or below. However, the low price comes with some consequences. You may need to improve your horse since it may need to be in better shape. A Clydesdale that goes for a much lower price may mostly have some health complications.

clydesdale horse

How Much Does a Clydesdale Weigh?

A standard mature Clydesdale may weigh from around 1,600 pounds (725 kilograms) to 2,400 pounds (1,088 kilograms). However, several factors normally affect the weight of a Clydesdale horse. In most cases, these factors may include:

  1. Age
  2. Health issues
  3. The amount of work
  4. Height


As Clydesdale ages, the weight may increase or decrease depending on the feeding patterns. Some Clydesdales may increase in weight since they get to work and run less due to old age. Less indulgence in various physical activities may increase weight. Some Clydesdales may also reduce weight once they get older.

The weight reduction in older Clydesdales may mainly be due to a reduction in the quantity of food intake. Older age may lead to slow appetite levels in some Clydesdales. You may even need to add some appetizers to ensure your old Clydesdale feeds accordingly.

Health Issues

When considering how much a Clydesdale weighs, know that health problems determine the weight of Clydesdales. In terms of health, how much does a Clydesdale weigh? A perfectly healthy Clydesdale with no health problems may weigh more than standard levels. Conversely, a Clydesdale horse with many health issues may have low weight.

A Clydesdale horse in good health has the chance to feed properly, thus adding some pounds to its weight. However, a Clydesdale with health problems may lack the appetite to feed properly to increase weight. Less Clydesdale health issues mean more weight, while more health issues mean less weight.

The Amount of Work

A Clydesdale horse participating in several activities and performing other duties may have less weight. The amount of work that the horse does reduces its weight to lower levels but not abnormally low. A Clydesdale horse that only participates in a little work may weigh more.


The height of a Clydesdale also determines the primary weight. Taller Clydesdales usually have a lot of weight. The increase in weight in taller Clydesdales results from increased body surface area. Increasing the body’s surface area leads to additional weight, while low surface area means lower weight.

For this reason, shorter horses, such as a Clydesdale pony, usually weigh less than mature ones. Taller horses also have bones that may weigh more, thus increasing the whole body’s weight. On the other hand, shorter Clydesdales have bones weighing less, thus making them have less weight.

What is Riding a Clydesdale Like?

The feeling you get while on the back of a Clydesdale is not what you may get when riding any other horse. In other words, riding a Clydesdale gives you the feeling of a king or queen. The power of this huge horse is just enormous, and you can feel it all while riding.

This gentle giant and its beauty make the experience almost perfect, even for beginners. Keep in mind that Clydesdales are gentle giants, so you shouldn’t worry about getting on top of it even if it’s your first time. Your body size or weight never matters when it comes to Clydesdale. This horse has more than enough power to carry anyone.

How Long do Clydesdales Live?

How long do Clydesdales live? Most Clydesdale horses’ lifespan ranges from 25 to 30 years maximum. Some Clydesdales may live up to 50. However, such cases where a Clydesdale lives to 30 are rare.

Several factors affect the lifespan of a Clydesdale horse. Below are some of the main factors that determine the lifespan of a Clydesdale:

  1. The number of times the Clydesdale has reproduced
  2. Nutrition
  3. Dental Health
  4. Diseases
  5. Physical activities

What are Clydesdale Horses Used for?

Many may ask, what are Clydesdale horses used for? Since Clydesdale is quite a special horse, its uses spread everywhere. From its use in the early war days, the horse proved to give out the perfect results. To this date, the Clydesdale still brings awesome results when it comes to:

  • Sport and leisure
  • Agriculture and work
  • Companionship
  • Support and Therapy

Sport and Leisure

The main use of the Clydesdale horse is for sport and leisure. The sheer size of this horse allows you to have all the power you need when on the racing track. These horses are also perfect when it comes to leisure. With the excellent support from this horse’s strength, you can enjoy your leisure time while in the saddle.

The natural structure of the Clydesdale also brings out that beauty that is just perfect. While in the leisure section, the Clydesdale works perfectly during shows and contests. Clydesdale’s beauty also adds some significance to your community since it is a pride.

Agriculture and Work

The uses of the Clydesdale spreads from the racing track up to the farms. Thanks to the strength of these horses, farmers can use these horses in their farms. From the early days, farmers used the Clydesdale, especially in plowing their farms. Before the invention of farming technology, Clydesdale ruled the lands.

To this date, some farmers worldwide still use Clydesdale on their farms. Despite the presence of modern-day technologies, they still say old is surely gold. Famers still use the Clydesdale even to pull their products from the farm after harvesting.


One of the most common uses of the Clydesdale horse today is companionship. Many people love creating that strong bond between them and their pets. When it comes to Clydesdales, the bond is quite the same. People keep the Clydesdales as part of their families, thus creating that perfect connection.

Support and Therapy

The most modern use of the Clydesdale horse is to provide emotional support. Giving people emotional support is one of the most modern uses of the Clydesdale and other horses. The horse may provide therapy with special therapy riding. People with mental disabilities may use this horse to strengthen their mental stability.

How Much Weight Can a Clydesdale Horse Carry

Clydesdales mostly carry loads weighing around 1,000 pounds (453 kilograms). However, these horses are robust and can carry loads weighing up to 2,000 pounds (907 kilograms). So how much can a Clydesdale carry for sure? This horse can carry even more than 2,000 pounds (907 kilograms). Some avoid adding weight to these horses to preserve their looks.

two clydesdale horses runing

The Pros and Cons of Owning a Clydesdale

The Clydesdale may seem to have many pros, but the cons are also in place. Below are some of the main pros and cons of the Clydesdale:


  • Clydesdales have a beautiful appearance
  • These horses are strong when it comes to their physical strength
  • Clydesdale are best for riding and performing other activities 
  • Due to their nice appearance, Clydesdales make the perfect horse for shows and exhibitions


  • The sheer size of the Clydesdale means that you need more room for storage
  • The horse boarding fees for this horse breed may be expensive
  • Clydesdales require a lot of maintenance times

Some Clydesdale Owner Questions Answered

  1. How fast can a Clydesdale run? – A Clydesdale can run up to 54 miles per hour (88 Km/hr)
  2. Where do Clydesdale horses originate from? – Clydesdales originate from Scotland around the Lanarkshire region
  3. Can you jump a Clydesdale? – No, you cannot jump a Clydesdale due to its huge size

The Final Musings

Riding a Clydesdale is one of the best experiences you may ever get. From the natural body size to the physical appearance, you can brag about owning this horse breed. Due to the diversity of this horse breed, you may use it in several places, including horse shows.