Saddle fitting... Explain?
 
 

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Saddle fitting... Explain?

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  • Explain differences in western saddle fit to the horse
  • Explain a saddle

 
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    03-17-2011, 11:29 PM
  #1
Yearling
Saddle fitting... Explain?

I'll probably get attacked for this but here it goes!

Can someone explain how the saddle is supposed to fit? I've had the same brand of saddle and it does not seem to bother my horse.. But then again, I would still love to double check for his comfort.

Thank you!:)
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    03-17-2011, 11:48 PM
  #2
Showing
Why would anyone attack you for wanting to educate yourself on this subject? I think it's very good that you're wanting to learn.
Think about a saddle being a shoe; if you try on a pair of shoes that hurt, you're not going to want to perform well while wearing them, and no amount of socks (comparable to saddle pads) is going to make them feel 100%.
There are some ways to kind of check for yourself if the saddle fits at the most basic level - there are lots of threads on that topic in this area of the forum. In order to be sure that it fits well, you're going to have to hire a professional to come out and check - and believe me, it's money well spent. I've seen and felt what a difference a well-fitting saddle makes, and it truly is astounding. Again, think of it being like an ouchy pair of shoes compared to runners that fit really well.
Hope that helps.
     
    03-17-2011, 11:49 PM
  #3
Super Moderator
Justjump,

Is this an English or Western saddle you are talking about.? I know the idea is fundamentally the same; a good fit, but it makes it easier to explain if we use the same terminology.
     
    03-17-2011, 11:49 PM
  #4
Started
Attacked? I think it is great that you want to ensure your horse's comfort even if the saddle "seems" like it fits :)

Sit your saddle on your horse, no pad.
Generally speaking, you want to be able to fit 3-4 fingers between the horse's withers and the pommel of your saddle. You want ample wither clearence for obvious purposes. Culprits of a too-low pommel could be a number of things from the tree being to wide to the width of your horse's shoulders.
If you look at the saddle from the rear, you should be able to see light through the gullet channel. The panels should rest clear of the spine. I like to see about 1/4-1/2" distance from the spine to allow for any surrounding tissues.
Viewing the saddle from the front, it should rest evenly over your horse's shoulders, with not gaps. Running your hands between the saddle and the horse, you should feel even pressure throughout (no pressure points).
Veiwed from the side, the pommel should sit a bit lower than the cantel, but not a huge amount, just slightly. Also, note how the back panels are resting on your horse's back. They should make contact all the way to the back of the saddle, not raise up or anything like that. Even contact, no pressure points.
Sitting on the saddle, sometimes fit can change. Make sure there are no pressure points as your sit in it.

That's all I can think of for now :)
I've had to learn as much as I could about saddle fitting, because there are no professional fitters in my area :(
There are some good youtube videos out there. (and some bad ones, be careful lol)

ETA: Dang you guys! Posting more quickly than me!
     
    03-17-2011, 11:50 PM
  #5
Weanling
You won't get attacked! This is a very logical question that I am personally very interested in ( future saddle fitter here lol). So no advice from me I'm afraid, but i'm subbing!
     
    03-17-2011, 11:51 PM
  #6
Yearling
Quote:
Originally Posted by JustDressageIt    
Why would anyone attack you for wanting to educate yourself on this subject? I think it's very good that you're wanting to learn.
Think about a saddle being a shoe; if you try on a pair of shoes that hurt, you're not going to want to perform well while wearing them, and no amount of socks (comparable to saddle pads) is going to make them feel 100%.
There are some ways to kind of check for yourself if the saddle fits at the most basic level - there are lots of threads on that topic in this area of the forum. In order to be sure that it fits well, you're going to have to hire a professional to come out and check - and believe me, it's money well spent. I've seen and felt what a difference a well-fitting saddle makes, and it truly is astounding. Again, think of it being like an ouchy pair of shoes compared to runners that fit really well.
Hope that helps.
Awesome! Thanks so much!

Is it possible to fit the saddle that I currently have? I probably sound really dumb, but it's brand new and expensive so I'd be in deep trouble if it doesn't fit!

Thanks for the help(:
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    03-17-2011, 11:54 PM
  #7
Green Broke
Hey there! You should check out the saddle fitting thread that is stickied, so much information:

http://www.horseforum.com/horse-tack...lly-fit-58116/

Enjoy!
     
    03-17-2011, 11:56 PM
  #8
Yearling
Thanks everyone so much for the tips and help!

Tiny: it is an English saddle(: sorry! Forgot to mention:/

Eliz: wow, you know so much! Thank you very much for sharing this with me! My horse does not have good confirmation by any means. I'll have to take pictures to show you so you know what I mean. I think getting the saddle to fit his back perfectly is going to be super SUPER hard to fins, unless mine actually fits. I'll take a picture of his back without the saddle, then another with the saddle on his back and no pads so you can let me know what I have to do(:

I thought I'd get attacked with things like "you shoal have thought of this before you bought the saddle" and things like that. But again, thank you everyone so much for all the help!! It's greatly appreciated:)!!!
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    03-17-2011, 11:58 PM
  #9
Yearling
Quote:
Originally Posted by sarahver    
Hey there! You should check out the saddle fitting thread that is stickied, so much information:

http://www.horseforum.com/horse-tack...lly-fit-58116/

Enjoy!
Thanks Sara!! I'll definitely check those videos out:)
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    03-18-2011, 12:00 AM
  #10
Started
Yeah, take pics if you are unsure! There are some people here that know far more than myself and we'd love to help you out! :)

Just be sure to take pictures from the side, back, and front of the saddle :)
If there are minor problems, half pads and risers are your friend. It only gets tough when you have a tree too narrow or too wide or just unbalanced on your horse.
     

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