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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey!
What’s a good brand out there that y’all use on your downhill ponies? My boy is bred for cutting, but he’s super butt high with a bit of a goose rump. He’s only 4, but based off his breeding I understand that this will be something he may not grow out of.
What are y’alls recommendations?
 

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Its not the pad but the saddle fit that needs to be top-notch.


So he has cutting blood, but what are your plans for him as a riding partner?
That will determine what you might need to look at/for to keep a saddle in place with such a build.
I'm thinking he may even out a bit with only being 4...this is when they broaden and beef up in stature too..

:runninghorse2:...
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
My plan for him is western pleasure. I would so love to get him into cutting and reining, but my main training for him is going to be centered around western pleasure and equitation, as well as halter(Just for fun!) He was shown as a yearling in Halter.
The saddle fits seemingly alright, but all pleasure show saddles seem to pop up a little in the back. I was hoping I could level out the pressure on his back better with maybe a shim pad of some sort.
I’ll take a saddle fit photo of him tomorrow and post it here. 🙂
 

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A Total Saddle Fit cinch made all the difference in the world on my downhill QH. My saddle fits beautifully, but it wouldn't stay in place on my downhill horse with a naturally low headset, wide/flat back and no withers - it'd creep forward/up his neck several inches during a ride, or roll down his barrel of a belly if I didn't mount perfectly. I prefer my 3/4" Five Star pad to not change the saddle fit much, but swear by the cinch!
 

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This is one of my biggest pet peeves.(not directed towards the OP)

I see a lot of the WP saddles have a forward, full double or close to it type rigging. But they hang a fancy faux buckle from the rear and only cinch the front. That is why you see the back pop up on those saddles no matter how low and slow they go.

A full double rigging is meant to be used on both front and back to even the pull on the tree. Hence the popping up in the back with the nin back cinch users. It has nothing to do with riding steep hills or roping as most think a back cinch is used for. It is rigging placement on the tree.

Any how, OP, it is hard to say with out seeing your saddle on the horse. But I found less pad is best in your situation of downhill, wide and flat growing colt to keep the saddle where it needs be regardless of rigging.(unless the saddle sucks the pad back=too thin pad)
Especially at his age his back and withers haven't developed fully under work.
 

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A Total Saddle Fit cinch made all the difference in the world on my downhill QH. My saddle fits beautifully, but it wouldn't stay in place on my downhill horse with a naturally low headset, wide/flat back and no withers - it'd creep forward/up his neck several inches during a ride, or roll down his barrel of a belly if I didn't mount perfectly. I prefer my 3/4" Five Star pad to not change the saddle fit much, but swear by the cinch!

I tried one, and it gave my horse horrible rub sores.



He's also downhill but he's got a very well-sprung rib case. That pushed the cinch forward (as it usually does) but the problem with the Total Saddle Fit cinch is that the main structure of the cinch is HARD and RIGID. So when the fleece folded over behind the elbows, he had a hard piece of leather digging in behind his shoulder which gave him horrible rubs with just one ride.


I went back to my Professionals Choice Shearling cinch that I should have stayed with in the first place, because I was not having any problems with (my mistake for trying something new).



So .... just a word of warning. I know many people who love those cinches but it did NOT work for my guy.


I see a lot of the WP saddles have a forward, full double or close to it type rigging. But they hang a fancy faux buckle from the rear and only cinch the front. That is why you see the back pop up on those saddles no matter how low and slow they go.

Plus most of them are forced to unnaturally travel downhill anyway (to force the head down) which makes the problem worse. Not all, of course, but most.


What’s a good brand out there that y’all use on your downhill ponies? My boy is bred for cutting, but he’s super butt high with a bit of a goose rump. He’s only 4, but based off his breeding I understand that this will be something he may not grow out of.
What are y’alls recommendations?



My plan for him is western pleasure. I would so love to get him into cutting and reining, but my main training for him is going to be centered around western pleasure and equitation, as well as halter(Just for fun!) He was shown as a yearling in Halter.
The saddle fits seemingly alright, but all pleasure show saddles seem to pop up a little in the back. I was hoping I could level out the pressure on his back better with maybe a shim pad of some sort.
I’ll take a saddle fit photo of him tomorrow and post it here.

It will be interesting to see photos when you get them up. If he is downhill, you might have trouble with the saddle sitting downhill no matter what because of his conformation. However, you'll need to make sure it's not too wide for him in front because that will also make the back come up.


He is only 4, so his body will continue to change. Honestly, if your saddle is "close enough" for the time being, I'd probably leave it as is and then re-evaluate in a couple years when he fills out and quits growing and then invest some money for a very well-fitting saddle. Built-up pads and shims can possibly have their place to help a horse that is naturally built downhill, but of course your saddle fit has to be correct to start with.
 

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I have been curious about the shoulder relief cinches but wasn't going to pull the trigger on one with the $165 price tag to find out. Especially now seeing a lot of lightly used(mainly with English buckle ends) ones for sale/auction on eBay.
 

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Quite a few of the local barrel racers swear by them. You can sometimes find a used one on Ebay, or it's easy to sell one if you don't like it.

At 4, your horse will still do some growing. My cutting-bred mare grew 2 inches and went from slender to built-like-a-propane-tank wide between the ages of 4 and 6. She leveled out at 5.
 
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