"Pancake" Saddles :)
What's your opinion on using a close contact saddle that is "pancake style", the kind with no extra padding/blocks on the flaps?
I'm looking to get a new saddle, but I can't afford much. I would be using it for jumping, so I'd love to hear some thoughts!
It just depends if you're comfortable riding on it IMO. Blocks on flaps and sweatflaps do little for the fit, which is the most important thing. Their lack simply makes the saddle closer-contact.
But PLEASE dont buy a close contact just on price - the cheaper ones will almost certainly be foam or fibre panel with narrow bearing surfaces and they mostly don't fit well. So you end up using thick pads, completely negating the benefit of sitting nearer the horse :(
It sounds like you have a saddle in mind. Why not post a picture and description of it?
When I started riding there were no forward cut saddles or knee and thigh rolls.
I prefer a saddle with little or no knee rolls.
I am sure that a lot of the fatalities in cross country were caused because the riders were so deeply ensconced in the saddle that they stand no chance of getting clear when needs must.
I think it's a very personal preference sort of thing. It's whatever you're comfortable in. I have always loved pancake saddles. I feel like they let me move around to help the horse and let me find my best position for the situation. I also like that I feel like I can bail out easily in a fall.
My sister-in-law hates my pancake saddles. She feels like she can't find and keep her position, and she feels like she's going to slide right off at any moment.
On a wide horse, I definitely prefer the pancake saddles. when I get a saddle with a deep seat and pads and blocks on a wide-body, I end up feeling like I'm doing the splits and lose contact with the horse.
On a super-narrow horse, I kind of like the pads and block, because the added bulk gives me something to wrap my legs around so my legs don't feel like they're hanging straight down the sides.
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