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What size saddle for you?

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  • 15.5 ranch saddle fits what size rider
  • Size english saddle seat do i need 5'1 115 lbs

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    09-02-2012, 04:45 PM
  #21
Green Broke
I really think it's the posture the saddle is setting you in, rather than the seat size.

I weigh between 200-210 any given time of year, and own 16-17" western saddles. Actually, the 16" fit me best, some 17" are too big for me and set me back too far on the horse. I have also ridden in 15"s but they are way too small for me.

You should fit in a 15" by most estimations but you could try different seat sizes just to see.

My pet peeve is saddles that have too much rise in the seat in front and force me against the cantle. That will kill your butt and tail bone (but some people like it?).

I like a saddle more like a hard seat ranch saddle like CowChick posted pictures of. They seem to make your crotch carry part of the weight and I really feel balanced and like it. So you have crotch and seat bones as your contact points instead of seat bones and tail bone.

Long story short, try a different style of seat to see if it's more comfortable. I bet it's the seat style rather than the size.
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    09-02-2012, 04:51 PM
  #22
Yearling
Quote:
Originally Posted by trailhorserider    
I really think it's the posture the saddle is setting you in, rather than the seat size.

I weigh between 200-210 any given time of year, and own 16-17" western saddles. Actually, the 16" fit me best, some 17" are too big for me and set me back too far on the horse. I have also ridden in 15"s but they are way too small for me.

You should fit in a 15" by most estimations but you could try different seat sizes just to see.

My pet peeve is saddles that have too much rise in the seat in front and force me against the cantle. That will kill your butt and tail bone (but some people like it?).

I like a saddle more like a hard seat ranch saddle like CowChick posted pictures of. They seem to make your crotch carry part of the weight and I really feel balanced and like it. So you have crotch and seat bones as your contact points instead of seat bones and tail bone.

Long story short, try a different style of seat to see if it's more comfortable. I bet it's the seat style rather than the size.
I noticed that I do seem to be scrunched to the rear of the saddle, against the cantle, which both of those saddles appear to be doing.

The saddle I just bought is an inch bigger, and has a more even seat. The seat is still slightly tipped, but not as steep as the other two.



I'm hoping this will give me some room, it won't crunch me up as bad, and it'll free my seat up enough to use my seatbones properly (once my tailbone is fixed)
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    09-02-2012, 05:01 PM
  #23
Green Broke
Im 115 and right now I am in a 15 in but it is big on me as I got to 127 and it fit me pretty perfectly then. I could definitely fit better in a 14.5-14 barrel saddle.
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    09-02-2012, 05:48 PM
  #24
Yearling
I go between 135-145 & i'm 5'6" & I used a 15. Different style saddles feel bigger or smaller. The one I use at lessons I would have sworn was a 14 but I mesured it & it was a 15. The saddle I use at home is a 15 & it feels wonderful
     
    09-02-2012, 06:05 PM
  #25
Showing
I noticed that for different models/brands the size you feel comfortable in may vary. I always used 15" for Western (I had Wintec, then after it broke Alamo), however with my height 18" English is the way to go to accommodate the legs comfortably (and even though I need forward flaps on CC saddle).
     
    09-02-2012, 06:21 PM
  #26
Super Moderator
I recently went to a tack store to try western saddles.
In Aussies I ride 16.5 to 17, about the same for English, so by taking off 2 inches I “should” ride a 14.5 to 15. I’m lucky to pass the 5’ 1” mark on a fluffy hair day, but am athletically built.

So, I walked in the store and the crusty old owner asked what she could help me with and when I told her I was looking for a size 15 western she nearly busted out laughing.
She really was crusty (having been a tack store owner since... goodness Ii could only guess a long long time!) but also very kind and explained that there is so much more to saddle/rider fit than a number.
Obviously leg length is one, but also hip spread vs. the twist of the saddle, thigh size, and of course the room between the pommel and cantle. This was an important factor as just because the saddle is stamped 15 doesn’t mean the space between the outer pommel area and cantle edge are all the same.

She had me sit in a variety of 15s. A few were tight but rideable, but most didn’t fit at all so we moved up to 15.5 and 16s.
And depending on all the above mentioned factors some of the 15.5s were ok and only some of the 16s were ok.
Then she put me in the men’s saddles (the ones that the men always gravitate to) to get a feel for the difference in the twist and how it affected my comfort. Because of my shorter thighs, a narrow twist felt better for me and would give me the impression of having closer contact without feeling pulled apart.

To say I was educated that day is an understatement.
I'm 5' 1''
English- 16 to 17
Aussie- 16.5 to 17
Western- 15.5 to 16
Weight withheld for a reason.
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    09-02-2012, 06:33 PM
  #27
Yearling
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lockwood    
I recently went to a tack store to try western saddles.
In Aussies I ride 16.5 to 17, about the same for English, so by taking off 2 inches I “should” ride a 14.5 to 15. I’m lucky to pass the 5’ 1” mark on a fluffy hair day, but am athletically built.

So, I walked in the store and the crusty old owner asked what she could help me with and when I told her I was looking for a size 15 western she nearly busted out laughing.
She really was crusty (having been a tack store owner since... goodness Ii could only guess a long long time!) but also very kind and explained that there is so much more to saddle/rider fit than a number.
Obviously leg length is one, but also hip spread vs. the twist of the saddle, thigh size, and of course the room between the pommel and cantle. This was an important factor as just because the saddle is stamped 15 doesn’t mean the space between the outer pommel area and cantle edge are all the same.

She had me sit in a variety of 15s. A few were tight but rideable, but most didn’t fit at all so we moved up to 15.5 and 16s.
And depending on all the above mentioned factors some of the 15.5s were ok and only some of the 16s were ok.
Then she put me in the men’s saddles (the ones that the men always gravitate to) to get a feel for the difference in the twist and how it affected my comfort. Because of my shorter thighs, a narrow twist felt better for me and would give me the impression of having closer contact without feeling pulled apart.

To say I was educated that day is an understatement.
I'm 5' 1''
English- 16 to 17
Aussie- 16.5 to 17
Western- 15.5 to 16
Weight withheld for a reason.
That must have been really educational! I'm glad the tackshop owner knew what she was talking about. Many don't!

And I love your avatar! I used to have russian torts and watching them eat was one of the highlights of the day!
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    09-02-2012, 07:03 PM
  #28
Weanling
I'm 5'7-5'8 and I weigh just over 100lbs, my english saddle is a 17.5 because I have freakishly long femurs and the larger the seat size, the more room I have from the seat to the knee roll, it's no good if my knees are sticking out the front of my saddle! I could probably suffice with a much smaller seat but my gangly legs disagree.
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    09-02-2012, 08:45 PM
  #29
Yearling
I am 5'7" and 140 lbs. I ride in a 14 1/2. I can go smaller depending on brand, but I prefer that size. I can rude in a 15, but still prefer the 14 1/2
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    09-02-2012, 09:03 PM
  #30
Foal
I'm 5'7 and 155lbs (I'm an 8 in pants, if that puts it into perspective at all). Have no idea what size saddle I use, but whatever it is...I like it! I'll try and find out tomorrow at my lesson.
     

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