Saddle Fit Critique/Help

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Saddle Fit Critique/Help

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  • Critique saddle fit rider

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    12-04-2013, 07:31 PM
Saddle Fit Critique/Help

Ok so I'm a novice when it comes to saddle fit, I'll be the first to admit. I usually just ride bareback because it allows closer contact with the horse. That said, I wanted to have an English saddle to ride in whenever it took my fancy. I had the saddle inspected for soundness and a local saddlery shop and they said it was in really good condition and that the tree is sound. I should also mention it's 18''. A previous owner attempted to re-flock the knee flaps and made them look...awkward, but they are comfortable none the less. I have yet to ride in it because I wanted to get some advice/opinions from people who have a much better idea of what fits and what doesn't.
Thanks to everyone in advance :)

P.S In the shot of the saddle from behind, my horse isn't standing square. He got a little comfortable munching hay while I took pics.

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    12-04-2013, 10:10 PM
Ok, I'm no expert but I've been looking into this lately as I'm trying to find a saddle to fit my gelding. To my eye, this saddle looks like it doesn't have a wide enough gullet (looking from the back, it looks like the panels might sit too close to or on top of his spine, for instance when he's bending around a turn, which wouldn't be good).

Also, it looks like it may be too narrow a tree width-- it kind of looks like it sits up too high on his shoulders from the front view. When you've tightened the girth, can you get a hand in on the side of his withers or does it feel like it might be pinching his shoulders?

I could be wrong as I'm not very experienced in this. Once you decide whether it fits your horse, you should ride in it and see if it fits you-- one saddle I rode in gave me a back ache because it tilted my pelvis forward too much. Make sure the saddle allows you to sit correctly on your pelvis and seat bones with legs hanging with ear/hip/heel alignment.

Hope that helps. Good luck.
    12-04-2013, 10:28 PM
I think that it fits reasonably well. The deepest part of the saddle is at the right place, so that tells you some. The front edge of the tree follows the line of the shoulder well.

The only part that is a bit h m m m. .. is the back part of the panels (the stuffed part that actually carry the weight of the rider on the horse's back) . They seem a bit more rolled upward, . . How do I say it . . . I mean, more banana shaped than the back. Did you put your hand under the flaps to feel that the tree has not gaps in how it contacts the back? (bridging)?

It might be a little bit narrow for the spine, as are so many older saddles, but to my eye, it's not a huge problem.
    12-04-2013, 10:33 PM
I think your horse would be more comfortable with a wider gullet... I cringe at how much the saddle shifted while the horse was 'getting comfortable' and how that would play out undersaddle.

The other parts look OK though
    12-05-2013, 06:17 PM
Thanks so much to all of you for your helpful input! I'll give it a go and see how he feels with it :)

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