Need Help with Correct Placement of Dressage Saddle
 
 

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Need Help with Correct Placement of Dressage Saddle

This is a discussion on Need Help with Correct Placement of Dressage Saddle within the Dressage forums, part of the English Riding category
  • How to put a dressage saddle on horse
  • Where to put dressage saddle

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  • 1 Post By kitten_Val
  • 2 Post By Beling

 
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    10-07-2012, 11:54 AM
  #1
Green Broke
Need Help with Correct Placement of Dressage Saddle

I am questioning whether or not I am correctly taking up Cinny, especially now that I have a new Dressage Saddle.

In the past he has been EXTREMELY picky about his saddle, and where it is on his back to say the least. Too far forward he either wouldn't move or would rear. Too far back he wouldn't move correctly and would be prone to bucking. To be honest, I never really thought so much about where the saddle fit until I got Cinny. My old H/J saddle I would just put on, and scoot back and forth until it settled and cinch it up. If I put my Kieffer on Cinny this way he would act like it was too far forward, and indeed if I picked up his front leg and pulled the knee forward his shoulders would hit the flaps. So I got into the habit of always making sure there was about an inch of clearance between his elbow and the shoulder when his leg was raised forward.

Last week I was riding with my new Wintec and the trainer/coach at our stable told me I had the saddle too far back. I explained that Cinny does not like it if it even remotely hits his elbows but she persuaded me to try anyway. It seemed to me to be too far forward but he moved okay. I don't know...it seemed too much like it was placed like a forward seat than a Dressage Seat. In pictures I have googled of Dressage riders I see that their saddles are also well behind the elbow of their horse.

Which is the correct placement? Am I second guessing myself too much? Any pictures, descriptions, etc that you can give would be a BIG BIG HELP. Thanx
     
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    10-07-2012, 12:04 PM
  #2
Trained
The way I was taught & still place a saddle on a horse's back, english or western is to place the gullet high on the withers and rock it back forth until it settles in place. That should be where it is correct, worked for me so far.
     
    10-07-2012, 07:39 PM
  #3
Trained
You want to make sure that it is clear of his shoulders, I like to sit my saddle at least a couple of fingers gap behind the shoulder blades - if the saddle sits over the shoulder, you will give the horse reason to give severe resistance, it's like tying a rubber band around your shoulders while trying to run, it's very uncomfortable!!

Then you don't want it placed too far back. If the saddle sits any further back than the 3rd to last rib, you're starting to push your luck. That section of the spine is very weak, hence the horse will buck.
This is why saddle fit can be difficult, particularly on short backed horses, trying to find a saddle with a short enough panel to accomodate the back, AND the rider.
     
    10-07-2012, 08:04 PM
  #4
Green Broke
Thank you so much, guys. Kayty you kind of confirmed my gut instinct which is 2-3 fingers between shoulder and saddle. This person is a pretty decent trainer where it comes to kids and 4H and I am really trying to find a way to politely tell her when I think something she says is wrong without being rude, after all she is also my BO.

I just especially didn't want to say that putting the saddle more forward was wrong when I wasn't 100% positive myself. I am finding that I am walking a very thin line at my current stable with this BO and trying to be a pleasant border not a know it all that contradicts her all the time...and I especially keep lips sealed in front of students.
     
    10-08-2012, 10:55 AM
  #5
Showing
Cinny, I place the saddle in such a way I have couple fingers between the shoulder and the tree. So I always look for the shoulder, then place my saddle behind (so shoulders would be free). It may take some practice (and least for me it did ). If you have problems "finding" the shoulder, ask someone to pick Cinny's leg and pull it slightly forward - you'll see/feel the shoulder very clearly then.
Cinnys Whinny likes this.
     
    10-09-2012, 01:35 PM
  #6
Green Broke
Quote:
Originally Posted by kitten_Val    
Cinny, I place the saddle in such a way I have couple fingers between the shoulder and the tree. So I always look for the shoulder, then place my saddle behind (so shoulders would be free). It may take some practice (and least for me it did ). If you have problems "finding" the shoulder, ask someone to pick Cinny's leg and pull it slightly forward - you'll see/feel the shoulder very clearly then.
Thanks. This is actually how I normally put the saddle on, but I was told it was too far back. I am going to go back to my old way though because although it is fine for western or some hunt seat, I think with Dressage it just constricts the movement and we already have movement problems LOL.

With my Kieffer it would still slide into his shoulders so I had to make a non slip padd out of that rubber grippy stuff, and then made a non slip cover for my girth and it kept it in place even when I let my girth be a little looser. I don't know if the Wintec slides or not as I still use my grippy stuff to be sure. I know the straight girth pulls the saddle forward so I am thinking of getting a curved one...

Anyway, thanks for confirming for me that I am not insane by wanting my saddle a few inches behind the shoulders.
     
    10-09-2012, 02:25 PM
  #7
Weanling
I think you have a good question. Does this help?

TRILOGY
     
    10-09-2012, 07:34 PM
  #8
Trained
Is your saddle a Dressage saddle? If it's a GP or jumping style, it will naturally sit more onto the shoulders due to its cut.
     
    10-09-2012, 08:01 PM
  #9
Green Broke
Yes, it's a Dressage Saddle LOL :)
     
    10-09-2012, 08:02 PM
  #10
Green Broke
Quote:
Originally Posted by Beling    
I think you have a good question. Does this help?

TRILOGY
Thank you so much, that is a great link... I think I may even put it on my facebook so others can see it:)
     

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