What do you ride your Arab in?

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What do you ride your Arab in?

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  • Saddle for wide short back arab
  • A narrower saddle as arabian grows?

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    06-26-2011, 11:40 PM
What do you ride your Arab in?

I have quickly realized that my newly acquired Arabian gelding is going to be slightly difficult to find a well-fitting saddle for. He has high withers, a short back, and the typical round Arab barrel. I have tried a Wintec AP, a few western saddles, and a Paso Fino style saddle (which so far seems to be the closest, but I didn't like the dry spots I found after riding half way down his back). I want to do most of my riding in an English saddle, but also want a comfortable western or endurance saddle for trails. The Wintec just sat really oddly on him, I'm assuming it wasn't wide enough. The western ones just seemed too large/long on him. I'm thinking a round skirt saddle will do best for the trail, and still unsure about the English...

So I was curious to see what saddles Arabian owners choose. Pics encouraged!
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    06-26-2011, 11:59 PM
Arabs are the worst to fit eh? Mine has a short back, mutton withers, and realllly wide shoulders! When we did western I had a saddle with the arab bars, it fit great. Not sure of the actual brand!
Now we do dressage. Wintecs fit really wierd on him. Because of his broad shoulders he requires a wide... yet I have to use a half pad to fill in gaps.
My advice would be to do a wither tracing then try out a bunch!
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    06-27-2011, 12:14 AM
Your boy reminds me a lot of mine! And good idea on the wither tracing, I just wish I could take him with me to try on saddles lol.
    06-27-2011, 12:54 AM
Yes, theyre really useful! Until I did a tracing I never expected my 14h, stick legged gelding would ever reqire anything wide! Lol
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    06-27-2011, 01:00 AM
I think because of Arab's fine bone structure and short stature, we automatically assume they are narrow-backed as well hehe.
    06-27-2011, 03:55 PM
I had an HDR advantage for my arab pony it fit him great! Although he doesnt have very high withers. Keep you eye open for a saddle that has an adjustable gullet too. That would probably be what I would look for.
Even If its not a perfect fit, you can always pad it to fit better.
    06-28-2011, 01:28 AM
Just because you can adjust the gullet doesnt mean it will fit... I've had experience with this. Saddle fitting involves more than tree size
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    06-28-2011, 10:51 AM
Green Broke
My arab was SUPER hard to fit as well...so I feel your pain. I worked with a saddle fitter for months, and finally have him in something comfortable for both of us.
We ended up with a circle y flex tree + a skito pad with shims.
Cha ching! Hehe.
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    06-28-2011, 12:44 PM
For a western saddle, I use an Arabian tree Circle Y. For English, I use a Bates.

For me, the problem is that the front has too large a horizonatal gap.

When people talk about a wide saddle, they usually mean the ANGLE of the bars in front, with wide = larger angle. Imagine an upside down V. As the distance between the points grows, the angle becomes wider. Now draw a horizontal line near the spot where the V joins. As that horizontal line gets longer, the GAP grows wider.

I need a wide angle, but a narrow gap. If the gap is too wide, the saddle comes down too far on the withers. In an ideal world, we all would have custom saddles for each horse. In the world where I live, I've taken to using this:

Fleece Western Wider Wither Pad - Statelinetack.com

For $8, it fills in the gap and keeps the saddle off of his withers. It also tapers gradually in thickness near the edge, and I have yet to see any signs of a line or any irritation where it ends under the saddle. I don't need it for the western saddle, but it works great with my English/Australian saddles.

And at the price, if it doesn't work, you can toss it out without feeling guilty.
    06-28-2011, 02:24 PM
I have a high withered barrel backed wide shouldered arab. An arab tree Crates fits her like a glove. I use a five star pad because I trail ride a lot. Don't overlook bar flare. Not every saddle has it. It isn't just the width but also the angle of the bars. Their shoulder needs to have room when moving and not be hindered/pinched. You should be able to slide your hand underneath the front and back of the saddle when cinched and the saddle should sit level.

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