Proper Barrel Saddle Fitting Problems
 
 

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Proper Barrel Saddle Fitting Problems

This is a discussion on Proper Barrel Saddle Fitting Problems within the Barrel Racing forums, part of the Western Riding category
  • Western Saddle Fitting Problems
  • How to size a barrel racing saddle pad

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  • 1 Post By beau159
  • 1 Post By pebbs

 
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    11-14-2013, 09:01 AM
  #1
Foal
Question Proper Barrel Saddle Fitting Problems

Last summer I started having fun with my walker gelding and attended some local fun shows for contesting. He's a pretty good all around horse...kids use for four H & I trail ride him and we've done many parades. So I have a few saddles. Mostly at home I use more lightweight codura saddles. Well he started doing the contesting and the more we attended the more he got "into" it and got better and better. I finally decided that maybe it was time to get a barrel saddle. So I went out and purchased one. When I got it home and put it on him the saddle seemed to sink in his shoulder area and stick up off of his back toward the rear. I tried adjusting it but it wasn't great. Different saddle...maybe its supposed to fit different. So I hopped on for a trial ride. Well I kept sliding to the front of the saddle. I had to keep pushing myself to the rear of the saddle. I got off. Convinced either the saddle is broken in the middle (which its not, its new) or that it fit improperly.
I talked to someone else with a gaited (icelandic/welsh) pony who confessed the exact same issue with their saddle. They assumed it was because the pony was hard to fit.
So I talked to a saddle maker who informed me that I can custom make a saddle to fit my horse to the tune of several thousand dollars...which he didn't recommend anyway since this was just a hobby. He advised that I just get a REALLY GOOD saddle pad. So off I search....

Does anyone have any advice on how to correct the fit of a barrel saddle on a gaited horse so that the saddle sits level? What saddle pads should I investigate? I've found a few but I'm apprehensive to spend $200 on a pad and have it not fit or even work properly. Thanks!
     
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    11-14-2013, 11:24 AM
  #2
Green Broke
Do you have any pictures you could post?

Pictures would be best with the saddle setting on your horse (not cinched) without a pad underneath. And then also include pictures where it is cinched up with your pad.

It sounds like your saddle is too big for him and the tree is too wide.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pebbs    

So I talked to a saddle maker who informed me that I can custom make a saddle to fit my horse to the tune of several thousand dollars...which he didn't recommend anyway since this was just a hobby. He advised that I just get a REALLY GOOD saddle pad. So off I search....
In general, this is HORRIBLE advice you were given.

Let's say that you play basketball once a week for fun. You actually wear a size 7 shoe, but you went out and bought a size 9 shoe. So, you wear 6 pairs of socks with your shoes in order to force them to fit because you don't want to go buy new shoes that actually fit.

That, in essence, is what you are doing to your horse. I'm sure you'd start to dread going to basketball once a week, because you are going to have to clunk around in shoes that don't fit. Your horse may start to resent gaming, if he always has to wear the ill-fitting saddle when he does it; even if it is only on rare occasion.

If a saddle fits very poorly, no pad is going to make up for it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pebbs    
Does anyone have any advice on how to correct the fit of a barrel saddle on a gaited horse so that the saddle sits level?
Trial and error.

I've never owned a gaited horse but I'm assuming they are more of a narrow build. If so, you are probably going to want a more narrow gullet (although gullet size isn't everything; it depends on the shape of the tree too).

There are many websites that will allow you to send saddles back if they do not fit. Teskey's is one of them. Just read the return policy before you order. Some websites do have a restocking fee, but there are lots of them out there that don't.
Teskey's Saddle Shop: Teskey's - Saddles - New Saddles
bsms likes this.
     
    11-15-2013, 01:06 AM
  #3
Trained
There are certain minor problems you can correct with a pad, but generally you can't fix it. You might be able to make it usable, though not perfect.

I tend to recommend the Classic Equine BioFit pads. The built up shoulders would help out, and it would also add some extra cushion.
     
    11-20-2013, 08:48 AM
  #4
Foal
Smile Thanks!!

Thanks guys!
I'd looked at the biofit pad. But after reading the first reply it made perfect sense. After reading the reply to my husband we elected to sell the saddle and search for one that fits better.
I apprecitate all the advice.
Thanks!
beau159 likes this.
     

Tags
barrel racing, contesting, gaited horse, saddle fitting, walking horse

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