Originally Posted by Tayz
How do I check it fits her well. My instructor is going to take a look tomorrow. The saddle has the space between the wither and saddle when you look from the front. I hope its okay..
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That there is space above the spine(the gullet of the saddle) is one point. That the gullet is wide enough all the way back, to clear the spine by about 1" at least each side is also important. Lack of a gullet in the rear half of the saddle, as in Westerns, can be a real problem if the saddle doesn't otherwise fit well & the horse is well built with good topline muscling. The saddle should fit the width and angle of the horse's back - many are too narrow. Bars/forks shouldn't interfere with shoulder movement and the panels should be wide enough & sit on the horse evenly from front to back & side to side, so as to distribute the weight evenly without pressure points and over as much surface area as possible. Lastly, girth & stirrup placement and seat design will influence the way the saddle balances on the horse too.
You can google 'saddle fit' & come up with many good sites & guidelines, or you can study the info on a site such as Balance International, who have heaps of great guidelines & info on whys & wherefores.
If you think your saddle fits the horse, then to check it out you can ride her in it with a white towel or such as a saddle pad. Put her through her paces enough that she will be a little sweaty, then unsaddle & have a look at the towel. Are the sweat/dirt marks even & well distributed? Are there any dry spots or areas, which could indicate pressure points?
Edited to add... just googled & found this site specific to western saddles... http://www.circley.com/images/Circle...le-fitting.pdf