Saddles,Please help. - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 15 Old 03-07-2017, 03:16 AM
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@loosie , could you post a good example of one you like?
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post #12 of 15 Old 03-07-2017, 06:48 AM
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post #13 of 15 Old 03-07-2017, 11:42 AM
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Originally Posted by Sylvangro View Post
Thank you all for the replies.I will look up the suggestions and research more about the saddle types you guys have been really helpful.

I am a begginer to horse stuff so this is very helpful.I hope to continue my education.Thanks again.
Check out this website and also this one to start researching on saddle fit. Western saddle fit is actually quite difficult. It will be best if you can work with a trainer or saddle fitter, or someone who knows what they are doing.

Of course, as has been suggested, get the horse FIRST and then you'll look for a saddle that fits.

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post #14 of 15 Old 03-14-2017, 11:39 AM
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Best to buy the horse first as others have pointed out otherwise you may end up buying a saddle that doesn't fit your horse. That said if you know what type of build you are looking for and breed as in stock horse/pony/OTTB you could get a saddle and have it work. Similar to buying clothes somethings fit better than others and styles are cut differently and may not fit exactly right but typically a specific size across brands will fit. Know the style saddle (lightweight endurance/trail) you want and shopping around now will help you settle on a couple of options. Pick them up, carry them around, lift them over your head or at least eye height. Make sure you are comfortable with the weight. Then get on them. Find your size and make sure they are comfortable. If you know someone that has one try it out on a ride so you know how you feel when you get off. My first western saddle weighed 60lbs. I was a light weight then so no issue with weight and the horse but lifting that saddle onto the back of an 18.2 hand horse was literally a pain after a shoulder injury. I don't have that saddle anymore but do have a lighter weight Aussie that I love in addition to a collection of English type saddles. I also have shorter horses to ride. Then look at brand availability and get your size and how the saddle fits you nailed down so you know that info ahead. Style/Brand/Size then buy your horse and check fit and then buy the saddle that fits them too. The trouble with buying before you get the horse comes in when what you find does not match what you went looking for or that particular animal has a physical characteristic outside the norm. My Aussie fits all of my saddle horses now. They are all built alike though. The one it didn't fit initially because she was a scarecrow when we got her it now fits since she has put on weight and muscled up. I do have a different saddle for my drafts. My AP English fits 17 of the 25 horses in the lesson barn. Two of those horses need a special pad for it to work but their build is not so different that it is an issue if they have the pads. My SIL bought her daughter's saddle long before the horse but I did the purchasing of the horse as well as advising on the saddle size and knew what I wanted for her and own several similarly bred horses. Her boy wasn't any different so it worked and they had something under the tree for niece. All of that to say it can work but it is better to have the horse first especially if you are not sure what you will end up with.
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post #15 of 15 Old 03-15-2017, 05:00 AM
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I completely back everyone that says get the horse THEN the saddle. Getting saddlestruck is probably a typical first time horse owner mistake a lot of us fall into (I was one of them, haha I still own the saddle, it's pretty, well made, and will look great as a corner piece in my living-room, but was WAY too narrow for the breed I was into, and ultimately as a result, too narrow for my horse which is of said breed).

Your goals seem similar to mine. I currently do pleasure trail riding, though want to start gearing up for endurance. I am also currently saddle shopping because the last saddle I had fitted by a reputable saddle maker (though NOT a master fitter), was too... dun dun dun... narrow!

My best advice, when you get a saddle, interview the people you are going to have fit the horse. Get an idea if they have any formal training, or if they seem like they actually know what they are talking about. A lot of tack stores will have people who fit horses, however, they aren't actually master/certified/whathaveyou fitters. They just have an idea. This could be unique to TN, but I've run into this issue twice already with two different reputable tack stores near Nashville, and this is a very expensive mistake.

Also, for a trail saddle, you want something with a very comfortable seat and light weight, that puts you in a well balanced position. That is extremely relative and not a general rule. One type of seat would be perfect for one person, while for another, it'd be a nightmare. Me, personally I like a really deep seat, with a twist, which is hard to find in a trail saddle as most are western style. Again, this isn't set in stone, there are exceptions to the rule, and for trail I've found I like endurance type saddles.

Also along with the seat, if you're going with a western saddle with western fenders, if you're short, or have short legs, keep in mind, the shorter you make your stirrups, the more bulk and rigidity is added to your fenders and you lose motion. You may have to swap your fenders out for a smaller size, or if they're leather, have them professionally altered. I'm short, and this has been my main gripe with western saddles, which is why by default I just prefer english flaps+leathers over western fenders.

Don't be fooled by treeless fits all, that's also another case by case situation, and not a rule for all. But if you ever want to try treeless, make sure it's one of the best brands and get the right size (they come in different sizes), for your horse.

Long story short, make sure you get a saddle that fits your horse FIRST, then make sure it is comfortable for you. haha.
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