Er...decent all around English saddle?
I have no idea what I'm supposed to be looking for! :D
I'm looking for a decent, all around English saddle for my gelding Divo. I want to do Dressage with him in the long run, not high-level per say, but he's my English 'starter horse'.
But...I'm completely lost when it comes to English saddles! Theres jumping saddles, Dressage saddle, all around saddle and for a Western rider, they all kinda look the same -cough cough-. Then people start talking about flaps and pads and and and :shock:
I'm wanting something in the $400 or less range. Not a show saddle, but something I can just use and work with, that fits my horse and is relatively comfortable, and won't fall apart if I try to clean it. I wouldn't want to use a $700+ saddle for dirty training work, where the horse is possibly trying to rub me off under say, a tree or a large thorned shrub.
So...suggestions? I don't even know what the seat sizes mean :?
What size western saddle do you ride? Thats usually a pretty good place to start. You need to just try a few out. If you have a local tack shop...go there and try different sizes. In western...your seat size is relative to the size of your hiney. In english...your hiney size doesnt much matter. The size of your thigh is more important. I ride a 15-16 western and a 19 english.
What size bars does he ride western? FullQH? Semi? English saddles can be difficult to fit. For your first saddle, you probably wanna buy local so that you can fit them and return them if they dont fit.
Yeah, there's quite a few options out there. I would say just get a dressage saddle, but if you plan to do any trail riding or jumping in it, that wouldn't be a good choice. I'd say look for an all purpose saddle with a regular flap. Forward flap is for jumping, and it's not the leg angle you'd want for dressage. Sit in a few zillion saddles and look for something that will leg you leg hang down naturally without the flap getting in your way. Most people call all purpose saddles no purpose, but they are a good middle ground if you just want to intersperse dressage with hacking and trail riding. As for a brand under $400 that's not a total piece of crap, either a new synthetic model Wintec or Thorowgood, or you could probably locate a nice used Pessoa or Collegiate for around that price.
Gosh i wish we could get a wintec over here for that price. They start at around £3OO in the uk, but tbh they are a great gp saddle. Good luck in your search.
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There's a user on this forum, Sarah something who has a Thorowgood T6 saddle for sale on the tack classified section. She's in the UK. I forget what she's asking for it, but it seemed very reasonable.
English Starter Set: Saddles Tack Horse Supplies - ChickSaddlery.com
Beginners Saddle Package Complete with Pad: Saddles Tack Horse Supplies - ChickSaddlery.com
I recommend either of these packages to my students who are just beginning English or are just starting to buy their own gear. Really durable (I own one, I've had it six years and I'm still comfortable as hell, it fits, nothing more than a few dings in the leather and thats cause I abused the hell out of it) It's super afforadable and just a good all purpose/do whatever in it saddle.
Also if it doesn't suit your fancy, there are other similiar saddle packages on this site you can look at, all very well priced.
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