Saddle fit for the HUMAN!?

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Saddle fit for the HUMAN!?

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    06-29-2013, 09:17 PM
Saddle fit for the HUMAN!?

I know how important it is for the saddle to fit the horse. I finally have learned how to do that. One thing is I'm not sure of is the saddle fit for ME!

I know that I fit a 15-16" western, and thus corresponding a 17-18" English saddle. I feel like maybe it's not that simple!!!! I know that I fit those two sizes because I've measured myself and corresponded(is that a word?) it to the saddle size. But i'm wondering how it is supposed to FEEL!!

What is too big?

What is too small?

What is just right?

I ride in my lessons both English and western. In my English lessons, I ride in a saddle that I believe is a 17". My butt fits up against the cantle, but doesn't feel squished. When I look down when im sitting on the saddle, there seems to be about and inch between me and the pommel-not where it starts to curve up-but the edge of the saddle. Is that how it's supposed to fit?

When I ride western, in a 16" saddle I believe, there's approximately 1 1/2-2" between me and the pommel, meaning I end right before it like curves up, and then there's the 1 1/2-2". Is that how it's supposed to fit?

Thanks bunches!
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    06-29-2013, 09:19 PM
I would love it if you guys could maybe post pictures of too big/too small/just right saddle fits. That would help tons!!

    06-30-2013, 09:45 AM
I ride in some 14 1/2" and many 15". A 17" in most English type saddles is right for me. Anything bigger and I joke that I could play a hand of solitaire on the left over space in front of me.

Maybe even more important for me is that a saddle not feel too wide. If I feel like I'm straddling a 55 gallon drum, I don't like it. I also like some size to the swells/pommel and a 4" cantle without Cheyenne rolls. Rounded skirts and I like where a 3/4 rigging places a saddle.

I ride English, too, and think that has something to do with my preference for the 3/4 rigging, which puts me closer to the withers.
    06-30-2013, 09:51 AM
Green Broke
On a western saddle I've been told that you need to be able to fit your fist between you and the pommel
    06-30-2013, 09:57 AM
I ride English, but I think its the same basic rules. You should be able to fit the palm of your hand between your bum and the end of the saddle, and a 3 finger space in the front.

I used to ride in a 16 inch saddle, it felt fine but when I looked at photos you could see it was too small. I bought it when I was 13, I am now 22 and I have certainly grown out of it! I now ride in a 17.5 inch, and it feels great. I would suggest going into your local tack store and having a good sit in lots of sizes! Some people like feeling secure in the saddle, and like the perfect fit. Personally, I find "the bigger the better!". I do a lot of trail riding and I find if I've got lots of space its just more comfortable :) Also, I can cater for other taller/bigger people who want to have a ride on my gelding.
    06-30-2013, 06:30 PM
I find if the saddle fits than its easy to stay in the right place. Too small is uncomfortable, too big you feel like your swimming and your legs stick out front of you.

Personal 5'9" I take a 15- 14.5" western saddle depending on the shape of the seat, English I take any where from 16.5" to 17.5" saddle, straight flaps I need a bigger seat, forward flaps a smaller seat. As a rule I aim for a 17" first than judge from there, so many people see me and put me a in a big saddle than wonder why I struggle.
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    07-01-2013, 10:20 PM
Okay, thanks guys. I feel very secure in the English saddle, I think it may be a teensy bit small, but It feels fine to me so maybe it's perfect.

The attached image is me in the saddle I ride in.
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File Type: jpg TOBY.jpg (39.5 KB, 146 views)
    07-01-2013, 10:50 PM
Green Broke
That picture isn't really at the right angle to see the fit, but it looks a bit too small in the seat. See if you can get your trainer to snap a few photos of you sitting in it directly from the side. Regardless, sit in lots of saddles before you decide what's the best for you, and pick something that feels right and puts you in the correct position!

I have a friend who is very tall and thin, and she has been having a very difficult time trying to find a saddle to fit. Her current saddle is a 17.5 in, and while the flap fits her leg the seat is too big. Anything with a 17 inch seat has her leg hanging in front of the flap, so she is having a heck of a time trying to find something that isn't too big but has a long enough flap! Thankfully I haven't had too hard of a time finding one that fits me properly, but for some people with varying dimensions it can be rough!
    07-01-2013, 11:25 PM
Thank you!!! I'll try to get pictures next time I have my lesson.
    07-03-2013, 03:37 PM
It's more on how it feels, rather than on how it looks. Sometimes the saddle is too wide for you, sometimes too narrow. Last time I checked (and it's been awhile since I've checked, lol), most saddles are shaped for men, being narrower in the seat. Women's saddles, if I remember correctly, are supposed to be wider in the seat.
You need to take into consideration how your leg/knees fit against the knee blocks. Do you feel like there's too much weight on the pommel or cantle? (Might be a saddle fit issue for the horse, not just you).

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