Really bad chair seat - what can I do? - Page 3 - The Horse Forum
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post #21 of 33 Old 03-15-2016, 03:49 PM
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Originally Posted by tinyliny View Post
I bet that saddle is actually an all purpose saddle. Stubbed made some that were either all purpose/jumper type. Or all purpose/dressage type. Not fully dressage saddle , just somewhat shaped and balanced that way but still retaining a slight hunt seat shape too.

Look at a Crosby. They have a nice lower price dressage saddle that in my experience fits a lot if horses. Second hand maybe $400.
is the saddle something like this:


Stübben · Products · Saddles · All Purpose
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post #22 of 33 Old 03-15-2016, 03:57 PM
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This is what I'm noticing:
1. It's definitely to small for you. Rough estimate on based on your height & build, I'd say you're probably around a 16.5 - 17" seat. My daughter & I are 5' 8" and 140 lbs & that's the size(s) we fit best in with an all purpose saddle, more towards the 17".

2. Stirrups are to short (like others said). The correct length will depend on if you're riding dressage, huntseat, jumping, eventing, etc. I was taught that for huntseat, with your relaxed leg hanging at your side, the stirrup should reach just above or at your ankle bone, or dressage use that length then drop it one hole. I'm not sure where you want it for over fences or eventing.

3. You need to strengthen your core and legs. Someone had mentioned standing in the stirrups to find your center of balance. You need to do that A LOT at the walk & trot. And you need to be able to stay standing centered for a long time without sitting. That does more than one thing, it helps you find your center of gravity which is where you always want to be (it'll make it so much easier to get in that ideal ear/shoulder/hip/heal line. And it strengthens that core & your legs. Once you find your center of balance, grip your horse with your legs (think of it like you are gluing your inner thighs & calves to your horses sides), DO NOT move your legs as you sit. That should have you sitting on your butt bones the correct way. The second you feel yourself getting out of that position, stand up and find that happy spot again. You may find you need to do that every few steps at first until you start getting stronger & your muscles start developing memory.

4. Saddle placement. You want the front edge of the flaps to reach just behind the range of motion of the scapula. When you put your saddle on, pick up your horses front leg & watch to see if the scapula can move freely without coming in contact with any part of the saddle.

5. You're riding on reins. In all of your pictures, your horse is behind the vertical, sometimes by a lot and that is another factor causing you to brace / ride with a chair seat. Basically he's trying to pull you out of your saddle by the reins and your legs are trying their hardest to stay in the saddle, while your upper body is getting pulled forward.

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post #23 of 33 Old 03-15-2016, 06:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by busysmurf View Post
This is what I'm noticing:
1. It's definitely to small for you. Rough estimate on based on your height & build, I'd say you're probably around a 16.5 - 17" seat. My daughter & I are 5' 8" and 140 lbs & that's the size(s) we fit best in with an all purpose saddle, more towards the 17".

2. Stirrups are to short (like others said). The correct length will depend on if you're riding dressage, huntseat, jumping, eventing, etc. I was taught that for huntseat, with your relaxed leg hanging at your side, the stirrup should reach just above or at your ankle bone, or dressage use that length then drop it one hole. I'm not sure where you want it for over fences or eventing.

3. You need to strengthen your core and legs. Someone had mentioned standing in the stirrups to find your center of balance. You need to do that A LOT at the walk & trot. And you need to be able to stay standing centered for a long time without sitting. That does more than one thing, it helps you find your center of gravity which is where you always want to be (it'll make it so much easier to get in that ideal ear/shoulder/hip/heal line. And it strengthens that core & your legs. Once you find your center of balance, grip your horse with your legs (think of it like you are gluing your inner thighs & calves to your horses sides), DO NOT move your legs as you sit. That should have you sitting on your butt bones the correct way. The second you feel yourself getting out of that position, stand up and find that happy spot again. You may find you need to do that every few steps at first until you start getting stronger & your muscles start developing memory.

4. Saddle placement. You want the front edge of the flaps to reach just behind the range of motion of the scapula. When you put your saddle on, pick up your horses front leg & watch to see if the scapula can move freely without coming in contact with any part of the saddle.

5. You're riding on reins. In all of your pictures, your horse is behind the vertical, sometimes by a lot and that is another factor causing you to brace / ride with a chair seat. Basically he's trying to pull you out of your saddle by the reins and your legs are trying their hardest to stay in the saddle, while your upper body is getting pulled forward.



that is because she cannot get up to a standing position very easily with the position of the stirrup, and the front of the saddle possibly raised (cant' see so well in those photos). that all CAUSES the rider to have to "help" themselves up by eiterh leaning forward, and/or, balancing on the rein.
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post #24 of 33 Old 03-16-2016, 12:37 AM
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English stirrups hang straight down, regardless if a saddle is tipped forward, backwards, or whatever unlike a western saddle. The position of the stirrup / leg is based on the riders center of balance & body strength to keep it where it needs to be, not on whether they can stand in the stirrups or not. If a horse is grabbing the bit or a person is riding on their reins it's going to pull them forward, balanced rider or not. If I'm standing in my stirrups & the horse suddenly pulls on the reins, instinct will tell my body to brace with my legs & to counterbalance with my upper body. When a person is riding on their reins or the horse is grabbing the bit it's no different, it's just constant pressure rather than sudden.

There's more than just a simple chair seat affecting the OP's leg position. If she were in a western saddle where the stirrups / fenders hang differently depending on the use I could see stirrup position being a factor. But since english stirrups are meant to allow greater range of position I don't think that's a factor in this example.
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post #25 of 33 Old 03-16-2016, 05:28 AM
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They may hang vertical but hanging vertical but still infront of the riders center of balance will still result in a chair seat, regardless of the riders attempts to counter act that by strength of lower leg or such . The stirrup bar position is critical ..
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post #26 of 33 Old 03-16-2016, 05:48 PM
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I've ridden in a lot of saddles - from crappy ones all the way to the Custom i ride in now. My trainer used to say "All Purpose saddles have no purpose". If there is one thing you should spend your money on, it is your saddle. Save your pennies, but make the investment - it is worth it and it WILL affect your riding for the better or worse and it WILL affect your horse.

Sit in the saddle at a stop. Let your legs hang. Sit on your sit-bones - not tilted forward or back. Where your legs are naturally hanging should be about where your feet are in the stirrups, perhaps a bit shorter while you are learning and gaining balance. Your saddle placement looks fine to me in the last picture. The horse IS behind the vertical in some pics, yes, probably evading contact.

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post #27 of 33 Old 03-16-2016, 07:17 PM
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I can't see if the saddle is dressage or AP or VSD - but regardless of that its not a jumping saddle and you're trying to ride on it (re. stirrup length) as if it is.
If you want to ride with shorter stirrups then you need to find a saddle that's designed to put you in the right position to do that or you need to drop your stirrups a few holes. When you do that your backside will immediately come further forward to where it should be for the saddle design and then your legs will find it easier to slide back into the right position
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post #28 of 33 Old 03-20-2016, 06:09 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tinyliny View Post
is the saddle something like this:

Stübben · Products · Saddles · All Purpose
This is a picture of the Stubben on her back.

I actually made another post here in the English riding forum, which is kind of an update to the issue. I just tried a Parelli bareback pad on her this week and she loved it, so I think that the saddle was not a good for her me OR her. She has been slowly becoming more and more high-strung and poorly behaved under saddle over the last six months, so I'm thinking this saddle and all the others before it were ill-fitting. I was told she was a medium, but the last medium left pressure marks and I have been struggling to find the right saddle since.

But in response to the person saying that I am pulling too hard on the reins, that's not true at all. I have very soft hands except lately I have been having to hold her back from taking off with me. Likely due to saddle discomfort, which I have just fully realized. I have actually been told in the past that I am too generous with the reins, which is why I had a problem will piano hands for so long.

I'm not even clear why she is behind the vertical or how that happens. All I know is that my instructor tells me to get her to lower head, I do, and she tells me it's good. Before I started recording myself I had no way of knowing it was incorrect. I don't even know how to fix this or why she curls under that much. She seems to do it on her own, because once she lowers her head I give her a looser rein and am no longer holding her back unless she speeds up.

Last edited by girlgone; 03-20-2016 at 06:17 PM.
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post #29 of 33 Old 03-20-2016, 06:37 PM
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interesting . . from that one side view it does not look like it's such a bad fit. maybe a tad high in front from being a bit too narrow, but one would have to see other views , from other angles to know more. and, tap it back an inch further.

I was expecting it to be more radically up in front.
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post #30 of 33 Old 03-21-2016, 05:31 AM
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Actually, I think it's more up in front than it appears. If you look at this photo which may be the same saddle:

I am guessing with such a straight dressage type flap, this saddle is supposed to have the flap fairly straight up and down rather than forward toward the horse's shoulder. Which means the saddle is too narrow, which is pushing the rider back and off balance.

That saddle as with many older stubbens appears to be meant to "swoop" up in the back of the panels rather than having them sit flat on the back.
I am also basing this on the fact that if the rider sits on the seat where it is lowest when it is on the horse, her leg hanging down in a dressage position would be on the back half of the flap.
Which is probably why she is riding with such a short stirrup...so her leg remains on the flap.

I agree with tinyliny that the stirrup bar placement also is critical. But in this case I believe the stirrup bar might be correct if the saddle were to fit the horse.
This is a case where no amount of proper position will fix the problem. I've seen excellent riders sit on a saddle that is off balance like this, and they instinctively sit where they need to even if they're half off the back of the saddle! Which shows that the saddle does not fit the horse.
It is difficult to see that the saddle might not fit if you assume those back panels are meant to sit flat on the horse's back. But quite a few dressage saddles are designed to have the cantle go higher than the pommel, so just putting those two level does not always mean the saddle is level.
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