Just Bought a Kieffer Wein DL Professional.. Help?

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Just Bought a Kieffer Wein DL Professional.. Help?

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    04-19-2010, 11:48 AM
Just Bought a Kieffer Wein DL Professional.. Help?

Hey everyone!

I just spent a bit of cash on a dressage saddle, the Kieffer Wein DL Professional, and I'm wondering what everyone knows/thinks about/of them. I'm an eventer, and it was time for me to invest in a saddle specific for the dressage phase. I've ridden in the Kieffer Wein, and Zip moves a lot better and easier than in his jumping, and I really liked the feeling, but I was hoping someone could clarify what the difference is between the Kieffer Wein and the Kieffer Wein DL Professional. I couldn't find anything online, sooo... anyone?

Additionally- I have a week and a half to "learn" to ride in the new saddle before my first event. We're only going BN, but I'm worried anyways. =] Any tips to be able to figure out the best length for stirrups? Any excercises you know of that will get Zip and me used to it faster (other than just riding in it!)? I have a feeling 8/10 of the days I have will be spent in the dressage, just working on getting used to it, but any advice, differences you notice, difficulties you've encountered when you switch between Dressage and Jumping saddles, etc, would really be appreciated! =]
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    04-24-2010, 02:00 PM
Hi EventinginMI,
I am a dressage rider (although I do jump from time to time), but have spent a fair amount of time around eventers. In my humble opinion, I have seen way more eventers that ride dressage with stirrups that are too long rather than stirrups that are too short. This is a generalization, and I will say that there are certainly eventers who do wonderful dressage, but I have seen several eventers who ride beautifully in their AP or jumping saddle (including flatwork), and then do odd things with their seat when they ride in the dressage saddle (stirrups too long, seat gripping for e.g., horse not forward) that they don't seem to do in their other saddles. So, my advice is the that the correct stirrup length is the length where you can sit comfortably and influence your horse correctly. Don't worry about trying to get a "long leg" in a week, you'll only end up reaching for the stirrups and messing up your riding. Besides, rider position is really about effectively influencing your horse (or sometimes staying out his way).
As for getting used to the saddle, get out of the ring, and walk trot and canter in the field. The length that you find comfortable there is the length you should start out with. If you feel awkward rising the trot or taking a light seat at the canter, then your stirrups are probably too long. You can also throw in some trotting poles or cavalletti for variety. If your stirrups are any longer than they need to be you will be out of balance, and need to slow or shut the horse down in order to try and sit. (Besides, Dressage out in the field can be fun )
As far as improving your dressage position in the long run, riding without stirrups is an excellent exercise, as are taking longe lessons.
Good luck with your event

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