I normally ride western, but due to a shoulder injury I'm unable to lift that much weight onto my horses back and I'm at the point again where I need to determine again if its a good fit or not for him.
I considered buying an english saddle but cannot find anything that fits him properly at an affordable cost. He's a stocky built QH and I just don't think he is meant to go english. The last we tried was a wintec 500 AP with changeable gullets. We just can't get the right saddle for his shoulder angel for the budget I have to stick to.
This is where I considered a treeless saddle. We do mostly ring work and trails.
Here are some questions I have that maybe some members of the forum can help:
- I have heard a lot of recommendations of a breast plate to be used with treeless saddles, is this true?
- I have heard a lot of stories about the saddles falling apart. I don't wish to pay $800-1000 for a saddle that will fall apart easily. Are there any recommended brand names? I have been looking at the Barefoot saddles
The Barefoot-Finally a better treeless saddle!
- Overall comfort? What do other riders out there think?
People seem to either love them or hate them and I've been thinking about getting something different for trail riding than our english saddles as not easy to carry stuff off them
Yep. People love them or hate them. They still ned to be fitted - don't let the treeless part fool you.
Your treeless saddle shouldn't be sliding around any more than a treed saddle. The free doesn't make the saddle extra grippy :) I don't use a breastplate.
Ansur, Barefoot, Black Forest, Freeform, Startrekk and Torsion are all popular brand name saddles. I'm currently riding in a knockoff saddle from eBay. Totally worth the $200 I spent. It sort of has a brand - Stunni. Lots of people were skeptical but I haven't had issues. Up close it looks like they "borrowed" the pattern from another company.
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I saw that from the bareback saddles they still do need to be fitted. I'm printing out the template at work tonight. I know proper padding is going to be a must to keep pressure off the spine and ligament areas. I know the barebacks have measurement requirements for the pommel. I'm going to have to make sure its balanced when placed on his back, that it doesn't exceed the last rib etc. etc. the benefit I see to going treeless would be that I don't think it will interfere with his shoulder (darn angles) like english saddles do (with a tree).
Has anyone here used the Barefoot saddles? Opinions on them?
I'm still looking into other brands. I want to be able to buy it locally vs. online so that I can try it on my horse before purchase.
I've heard talk about gullet vs. no gullet treeless saddles - opinions between either? Advantages or disadvantages?
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