Which is worse: Padding or ill fitting saddle?
 
 

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Which is worse: Padding or ill fitting saddle?

This is a discussion on Which is worse: Padding or ill fitting saddle? within the Horse Tack and Equipment forums, part of the Horse Tack category
  • Are saddle risers for ill fitting saddles
  • Saddle pads to fix illfitting saddle

 
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    03-12-2011, 06:39 PM
  #1
Weanling
Which is worse: Padding or ill fitting saddle?

Excuse me, ill fitting is not the right word. It's a little bit off.
I have a Wintec I am in LOVE with. Not parting with me any time soon. Anyway, since I ride one horse most of the time, I figured I would check the gullet fit. I had suspected that the medium gullet was too small for a while as saddle pads were getting dirtier in the gullet and she was getting sweatier in the gullet area. I checked with the measuring thinger...Yep! One size too small. I fixed the gullet.
Now, the problems are some fitting issues we had in the first place. The channel is too wide (can't change that) but that's not a big deal. The big problem is that the saddle is now REALLY REALLY low on her withers. I can fit one, MAYBE two fingers under the pommel. She doesn't seem to mind, however, I do mind. That cannot be comfortable! I think she's just so used to ill-fitting saddles (I ride at an icky barn. I hate it.) that she doesn't notice.
My problem is that I want to use a riser and fix it, but I know that's not a good solution. Sock and shoe analogy, yadda yadda yadda. Thicker socks won't make your shoe fit better and what-not. But in this case would it be better than nothing? Or should I just go back to the old gullet, even though it pinched?
Thank you, saddle experts of the horse forum!
     
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    03-12-2011, 07:50 PM
  #2
Trained
If it's already tight on her wither, putting padding under it is going to make it tighter. Is it low on her wither without someone sitting on her? If so - it's going to be sitting on her wither when you get on.
You can give her a super sore back riding in a too wide saddle, you absolutely cannot expect her to work correctly, she will be inclined to hollow away from the saddle.

I would not use the current gullet OR the old gullet. It's not fair on her. Saddles are not 'one brand fits all if you re-adjust it'. Some saddles just DO NOT fit some horses. Please don't expect her to work in such a ill fitted saddle, its just not fair on her.
     
    03-12-2011, 07:58 PM
  #3
Weanling
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kayty    
If it's already tight on her wither, putting padding under it is going to make it tighter. Is it low on her wither without someone sitting on her? If so - it's going to be sitting on her wither when you get on.
You can give her a super sore back riding in a too wide saddle, you absolutely cannot expect her to work correctly, she will be inclined to hollow away from the saddle.

I would not use the current gullet OR the old gullet. It's not fair on her. Saddles are not 'one brand fits all if you re-adjust it'. Some saddles just DO NOT fit some horses. Please don't expect her to work in such a ill fitted saddle, its just not fair on her.
I trust you and everything, but its the best I've got. The wide channel is really that big of a problem? I always thought it was the least of my problems, because it only causes big issues in horses that do proper work into the bridle...Which we do not do (again bad trainer).
Okay, so no extra padding. That's what I thought, too.
I forgot to clarify. One finger maybe two fingers if I'm on her back. So more like 3 or so on the ground.
Yeah, its not the best fitting saddle. I don't have that option right now, or pretty much ever on this horse. I know saddles are not "one brand fits all" but honestly this saddle fits her better than the barn's saddles do. They have a way too narrow gullet, are heavy in the front, have a gullet that is too small for her, and unbalanced panels.
     
    03-12-2011, 08:05 PM
  #4
Trained
If you're not doing too much work with her you could get away with it for a while, but I certainly wouldn't be riding her much and expecting her to do much more than 'plodding' around.
Is she your horse, or a lesson horse? If she's yours, I'd be saving my pennies to get something that fits her better, you can always trade in your current saddle and put the money towards getting something else.

I just worry that we'll be hearing in a couple of months a thread from you asking how to stop a horse bucking!
     
    03-12-2011, 08:37 PM
  #5
Weanling
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kayty    
If you're not doing too much work with her you could get away with it for a while, but I certainly wouldn't be riding her much and expecting her to do much more than 'plodding' around.
Is she your horse, or a lesson horse? If she's yours, I'd be saving my pennies to get something that fits her better, you can always trade in your current saddle and put the money towards getting something else.

I just worry that we'll be hearing in a couple of months a thread from you asking how to stop a horse bucking!
If she starts bucking I'll let you know. Actually she's started trying to buck, but that's because she's learned that lead changes=good time to bolt! Anyway...

She is my lesson horse. I have this secret wish to buy her, and that is for sure the first thing I'd save money for. I can get her to do a little bit of working under herself, however I WILL keep in mind your concerns with the fit. No extra padding. Got it.
     
    03-13-2011, 11:34 PM
  #6
Green Broke
An extra pad should do the trick. As long as the saddle fits without the pad, than adding a front riser shouldn't do enough to make things uncomfortable for her. That is, assuming the pad isn't terribly thick.

We have a horse that has high withers and a low back. He's shoulder high and has the early signs of a slight sway. So, he is "fun" to fit. He always gets a pad that has panels on either side, to allow for spine relief and lift the saddle off his withers. If the saddle sets too lo in back, we add shims to the back ot the pad to level out the seat. I use a Skito Interpad, 1/2" thick for English saddles and 3/4" thick for western saddles, with a 3/4" rear shim if needed. It works like a charm for him, and he is one that will not put up with an uncomfortable saddle .
     

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