saddle fit

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saddle fit

This is a discussion on saddle fit within the Horse Tack and Equipment forums, part of the Horse Tack category

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    08-19-2012, 02:33 PM
saddle fit

I'm new to al this.
My granddaughter, age 8, is a beginner rider. She has taken lessons off and on for a few years. We have a full sized horse available to her. I need a saddle for her. When I read descriptions I read about size. Is this referring to the size to fit her or to fit the horse? She, the granddaughter not the horse, is a bit taller than average but very slim. I need suggestions, tips, etc.
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    08-19-2012, 02:53 PM
A saddle has to fit both horse and rider, if you are new to it all the only way to get this is to have hands on help. I would ask her trainer, or have a fitter come out and explain and show you what they are looking for in a good fit for both horse and rider.

Good luck, this is often the biggest hurdle in horse ownership.
    08-19-2012, 03:12 PM
Definitely get help from someone who knows a bit about saddle fitting before you buy one. Not only does it have to fit your granddaughter, but also the horse-horses have different requirements in terms of how the saddle fits them too. An ill fitting saddle can cause a horse pain or even damage. Good luck in your search :)
    08-19-2012, 03:30 PM
Thanks for the advice.
When I see sizes like 15", 16", 17" etc. what is that referring to?
    08-19-2012, 03:30 PM
I would definitely ask someone for help but usually when you see ads the riders seat size is in a number and the horses saddle fit will be listed as semi quarter horse bars, full quarterhorse bars, narrow or wide tree depending on the discipline of the rider western vs english. I think if you buy a western saddle and it says 15in seat the equivilant in english saddles is a 17in. If you go online there are a lot of sites that will help you decide on the seat size of the rider, the type of tree for the horse will take a more hands on approach.
    08-19-2012, 03:32 PM
Originally Posted by jallen4030    
Thanks for the advice.
When I see sizes like 15", 16", 17" etc. what is that referring to?
The riders seat. It is equally important to get the right size tree and fit for your horse.
    08-19-2012, 03:34 PM
Originally Posted by jallen4030    
Thanks for the advice.
When I see sizes like 15", 16", 17" etc. what is that referring to?
That is the size of the seat. A smaller person would take a 15, a larger 16 or 17. What type of riding is she doing, english or western?

    08-19-2012, 03:37 PM
If your granddaughter is only eight you will need a smaller saddle. Maybe a 12'' or 13'' youth. However, if she has long legs, it might be better to find a 14'' and let her grow into it.

When I was little I rode in a 16'' barrel saddle. Definitely too big (even for me now) but I could reach the stirrups, and I grew into it, so we didn't have to buy another one when I got a bit bigger I'm seventeen and 5'2'' and I ride now in a 14'' barrel saddle or a 15'' reining saddle.
    08-19-2012, 04:29 PM
Take her to a good tack shop that carrys a good variety of saddles. She needs to sit in the deepest part of the seat. You should be able to place 4 fingers behind her hiney and the top edge of the seat (cantle). If english, don't go smaller than a 15" seat but I'll suggest going with a 16". It can be hard to get the 15" to fit a full sized horse whereas you might have better luck with a 16". In western, same problem so chose a 14". Again she should sit in the deepest part of the saddle. Saddles come in all prices so do watch that it's not asian made. A good store won't carry them. Hope this helps. Oh If you find one that fits her, ask about trying it on the horse. The thing is if there is a return policy get it in writing and the conditions. Cover a good part of the horse with a clean sheet and set the saddle on that, no pad. If she want to ride in the saddle be sure her clothing can't scratch it and wrap the stirrups and leathers in cling wrap. Some even pull socks over their boots so no grit touches the stirrup pad.

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