The first thing that can make or break the race is the saddle. All Rights Reserved, We are an online retailer in Peterborough, Cambridgeshire, United Kingdom, If you are interested in trialling a saddle to see if its suitable for your horse. • Bar rock or sweep refers to the amount of curve in the bars from front to back. It’s *free*! • The Cashel Trail Saddle, made by Martin Saddlery, is built on the Axis saddletree, which features bars that curve away from the horse’s shoulder to avoid interference and stirrup leather cutouts along the bars to allow for even pressure along the back. “There are, of course, certain breeds that are consistently wide, like Fjords and Haflingers,” says Nancy Temple, of Duett Saddles, a Massachusetts-based saddle distributor of saddles to fit wide horses. But if you take the time to analyze how your horse is put together and what a “good fit” means for him, you’re more likely to choose a saddle that will make you both happy. Whether your horse is the full-figured type like a lot of Haflingers and Fjords or angular and athletic like many Thoroughbreds, or even if he’s one of those in-between horses who’s either still growing or has conformation that doesn’t fit the mold of the average horse—there’s a saddle out there to fit him. 100% premium leather; Beautiful hand-carved floral and basketweave tooling; Well-padded seat; Numerous ties Adjustable Blevins Buckles; Cons Go to www.americansaddlery.com. But it will be challenging to find the best treeless saddles. “The idea that it’s OK to fit a saddle too wide and then pad it up is erroneous. And finally there are the in-betweens, like my Quarter Horse, Cappy. “One never knows what one’s horse is going to do over the years, and having a saddle that can be converted to adapt to changing shapes, or even fit a different horse down the road, is a wonderful thing.”. Some trees offer a little flare in back as well to allow for a croup-high horse. Many of these horses have withers that taper into a broad, athletic back with a well-sprung rib cage. (Compare carrying a sleeping child, to one that is awake.) To ensure a good fit the saddle features a changeable gullet system, movable blocks at the knee and calf, and four girthing options. All horses appreciate a good fit. Too narrow and it could bridge, creating pressure points. Go to www.batessaddles.com. • Bars (rails on an English saddle) are the two strips that run parallel to your horse’s spine and are connected in front by the fork or pommel and in the back by the cantle. The sport of endurance riding demands the best in saddle fit and construction. Minor imperfections in fit that may have little or no consequence during an hourof arena riding can cause significant soreness for both you and your horse after a day on the trail over varying terrain. Take one look at those withers and you might think narrow saddle. The deeper gusseted panel ensures maximum clearance along the length of the spine, making this saddle ideal for shorter backed, high withered horses and those with wide spinal processes. • Bar angle is comparable to the pitch on your barn’s roof. Here are a few suggestions for saddles that might fit the mutton-withered, broad-backed horse: • Duett offers a variety of saddles—dressage, close contact, jumping, Icelandic/gaited and trailbuilt on wide, rounded trees. To help you further, we gathered 15 best saddle for gaited horses. Here’s how to choose the right saddle for three equine body types that are especially hard to fit. Pros. The saddle is fitted with extremely comfortable panels capable of absorbing movements, thus protecting the horse's well-being. *Also see my post on the Best Bras for Riding Horses. Getting a saddle to fit him was tough. • Barrel racing or gaited saddles, available from many makers, tend to offer ample clearance at the withers. You can find many saddle for gaited horses and you might find it hard to choose as they all seem good and suitable. https://mailchi.mp/3e71a72e8c92/the-saddle-bank-fitting-guide. No matter which type your horse has, be sure there’s no pressure there either before or after you ride. I’ve seen a few very curved trees on flat-backed horses, and they rock considerably. “Some of my saddles, like the Fidelio dressage model, offer a more sloping pommel shape,” says Temple. The bar can be changed, as necessary, if your horse changes in size. Horses of just about any breed, age or gender can be found in this category. Challenge 3: The in-between or immature horses. Opinions vary in the saddle-fitting community over whether it’s advisable to buy an extra-wide saddle and add padding at the withers to make it fit. It has a round, 26″ length skirt. • Bar flare refers to the bar tips, usually in front, where they curve up and away from your horse’s shoulders. Check our latest endurance saddles reviews. There are many companies today that produce saddle pads. His front and back conformation don’t seem to belong to the same horse. It should be able to spread the weight of the rider evenly across the horse’s back, by encompassing a large and flat surface on which the rider can sit. Depending on model and customization, prices range from $950 to $1,729. He looks like a bulldog from the front, with a concave pocket behind his shoulders and a fairly average back. Many of us know the sinking feeling that comes when you put your foot in the stirrup and feel your saddle roll sideways. Kent and Masters is essentially a full leather version of Thorowgood saddles, offering a similar range in fit and design. Many endurance riders include dressage training as part of the curriculum to strengthen the horse’s back – in a properly adjusted and fitting saddle of course that … Saddle Fit and Endurance Riding Read More » The bar can be changed, as necessary, if your horse changes in size. All are built on a tree designed to fit Haflingers and other wide-backed horses. Some horses have shark withers that drop off sharply. It hurts! Go to www.collegiate-saddles.com. Yes, there are all sorts of horses whose shapes make finding the right saddle difficult, and there’s a lot at stake. Their gait creates a smooth ride and allows them to carry an above average amount of weight for their size. Thorowgood T8 Endurance Saddle. If the saddle is not soft and light for the horse and the rider, it might be a problem. Now that I live in Montana instead of the flatland (errr, I mean Heartland), I’m lucky enough to be invited on trail rides to some pretty majestic places.I know better than to head up a mountain without ensuring my equipment is up for the rough and tough demands of trail riding. Raid Equestrian Limited, 83 Ducie Street, Manchester, M1 2JQ, United Kingdom The company sends out nine saddle forms, and the customer photographs and videos the horse wearing the forms, both standing and in motion. If you are not sure what saddle to try, get in touch with our friendly team via email info@thesaddlebank.com or. Those are the two most important things to look for. 15 Best Saddle for Gaited Horses. A Western saddle is designed for long work days in the saddle, giving both the horse and the rider greater comfort for those long days. We've rounded up our best collection of endurance saddles. The AceRugs western leather horse saddle measures 12-18 inches in the seat and weighs about 26 pounds. And sometimes saddle slips occur even after you’ve tried every­thing to prevent them: riding in a wide saddle, using a nonslip girth and pulling the cinch as tight as your core strength allows. Visit www.trailridingsaddles.com. “Now, for the first time riders can monitor these changes and even do something about them.” Prices range from $1,220 to $2,999. “All riders know that their horse changes shape due to changes in diet, work program and maturity, and naturally they get frustrated when they discover their saddle no longer fits their horse perfectly,” says Ron Bates. “Shoulder gussets and a dropped panel are a must to fill in the area behind the shoulder and lift the saddle enough in front to clear those withers.”. Just make sure you have all the gear and experience necessary to ride safely. Prices range from $670 to $1,500. But that’s an all-too-common mistake. To do its job right, the tree must fit the contours of your horse’s back. Finding saddles for the hard-to-fit horse can be a challenge. Endurance rides can be any distance, though they are rarely over 160 km for a one-day competition. It’s no different for your horse. Many of these horses have withers that taper into a broad, athletic back with a well-sprung rib cage. A broad-backed horse will probably take a wide saddle, but be aware that those with very wide twists can be uncomfortable for the rider, so be sure to look for saddle designs that fit you, too. Take that off my back now, really.” There are things to take note of when putting a saddle on a horse, at the top of these things is how well the saddle fits onto the back of … This saddle is especially good for horses with an apex shaped back and is a good start up saddle for new riders. Visit www.duettsaddles.com. The leather models feature short, rounded skirts for the short-backed horse. ... riding in a wide saddle, ... which allows you to select a gullet bar that best fits your horse. Not all Western saddles are as good as they seem. Your horse might be young and still growing or getting back into condition, like Cappy. Ideally, the bar angle when viewed from the front of the horse will match the slope of the area just behind the horse’s shoulder known as the “saddle pocket.”. “I’m a big fan of adjustable saddles,” says Anderson. • Bar twist refers to the change in bar angle from front to back as it follows the contours from just behind your horse’s shoulder toward his croup. Front gussets are an additional piece of leather stitched onto the front, which allows for more flocking in this area. This saddle has a slightly flatter tree on the underside and compact panels that allow the rider to feel closer to the horse, while still being deep enough to ensure maximum clearance along the length of the spine of a high-wither conformation. Chances are, you’d wind up with painful blisters on your feet, and you might end up with a backache. Models available include Western trail, Cascade Wade, renegade endurance and plantation trail, with different design choices including leather color, skirting style, rigging options and tooling. Best roping saddles are also a good choice. [For your bookshelf: The Horse's Pain-Free Back and Saddle-Fit Book][For your bookshelf: The Western Horse's Pain-Free Back and Saddle-Fit Book: Soundness and Comfort with Back Analysis and Correct Use of Saddles and Pads], “I’ve always compared saddle fit to shoe fit,” says Dawn Anderson, a saddle fitter certified by the Society of Master Saddlers in the United Kingdom. Endurance riding is gaining in popularity in the horse world but as Endurance GB says it isn’t for the faint hearted, and it isn’t for the rider who doesn’t actually enjoy being in the saddle for long stretches!. Thorowgood T4 Original GP – HGP The High Wither Standard GP is generous for its size, with a roomy seat, deep rear gussets and a slight curvature in the tree. 9 Best Endurance Saddle -Reviews And Buying ... - horse mania They can be used for different types of riding. Traditional panels are more straight, therefore do not offer the option of adding additional flocking to lift the saddle off the wither. )” “Hey! Bar crowns that fill in gaps or hollow pockets, bar flares for beefy shoulders or high croups, and a substantial sweep or rock for the dippy-backed horse work well. Drop panels in a saddle offer more surface area which would sit in the hollow behind the wither on high wither horses. The general rule of thumb is to pick a saddle that is shorter in length and/or has a round saddle skirt. Even wider trees can be special ordered. It is one of the international competitions recognized by the FEI.There are endurance rides worldwide. This added luxury gives the feel of riding on an all leather saddle, whilst keeping the saddle light weight. Learn more about how saddles should fit…. In terms of size, they are designed to effortlessly balance the rider's position during trials. However, the endurance saddle is only suitable for endurance and long distance riding because the rider must ride long. Go to www.blackcountrysaddles.com. Most saddle makers are happy to talk saddle fit with you. They usually do better with saddles that have V-shaped trees—but not always. King Series Synthetic Trail Saddle If you're looking for a high-quality synthetic saddle that's perfect for endurance or trail riding then this one from Kings Series is the one to choose. Endurance riders (and horses) are the marathon athletes of the equestrian world. If you are a horse owner or rider and would like to learn more about saddle fitting, and how the saddle can impact your horses performance and welfare, click on the link below: Copyright © The Saddle Bank 2019. Super-comfy deeper seat that gives you a little extra in-saddle security and locates you centrally. And often traits that seem to go together naturally---tall and narrow, round and short, and the like---don’t when it comes to equine withers and backs. When it comes to saddles, some horses are just hard to fit. Sadly, horses cannot talk, because if they could talk, they would probably say something along the lines of “Hey! Don't miss out! (Neigh! “But sometimes ear pinning, tail swishing, teeth grinding, evasion of the bit, and even difficulty with upward and downward transitions can be linked to discomfort in the horse. On the other hand, says Temple, “Many in the natural horsemanship community, as well as other fitters and veterinarians, feel that fitting a horse with a too-wide saddle and using shims to lift the front is actually advantageous. Go to www.wintec.net.au. In fact, today’s saddletree looks a lot like the ancient versions—just two strips of wood (or composite) connected by two arches—a pommel or fork at the front and a cantle at the back. For endurance riding, you travel very light, with pit stops along teh way, so not the same as truly trail riding, which is also not the same as just riding out a bit I want awell made saddle, that allows close contact, with that twist , which has those stirrups already hanging correctly. High-withered horses will benefit from models with thicker gussets and trapezius or K panels, which fill in hollow areas behind the shoulders. Our reviews and guidelines will help you to find the right one for your horse. The saddle you use will depend a great deal on your style of riding. There are 10 main saddle types for you to choose from: General purpose saddle: This saddle type is a good option for beginners to consider. A narrow saddle on this kind of horse will probably cause pain. Luxurious suede-effect seat covering and knee pads are non-slip and really comfortable to ride on. Here are a few suggestions for high-withered horses: • Black Country Saddles specializes in custom-built saddles for a number of English disciplines, including dressage, endurance, jumping, polo and hunters as well as Icelandic and general purpose. It must distribute the rider’s weight evenly over the horse’s back, while keeping pressure off his spine. A saddle that pinches a horse’s shoulders or presses on his withers can have all sorts of negative effects. Hoop-shaped trees, shaped like an upside-down U instead of the traditional V-shape, fit these burly types well. If you’re unsure what tree is in the saddle, ask the retailer or manufacturer. Top 5 Best Saddle for Trail Riding 1. 5 Best Treeless saddles Comparison Chart: 5 Best Treeless saddles Reviews. My own gelding, Cappy, certainly does. So to help you with the selection process I have made a list of some excellent quality saddle pads. The saddles are designed with flaps that will help with jumping, hunts, and dressage. Understanding the following terms can help you make an informed decision. AceRugs All Natural Cowhide Western Leather Horse Saddle. Although we all know the basic types of equine conformation, horses are as individual as we are. Many Thoroughbreds and their crosses have prominent withers. Best Saddle for Trail Riding. A better understanding of how to achieve a perfect fit will pay off in a quiet and focused ride. • Allegany Mountain Trail Saddles offers a fully customized fit, starting at around $1,350. That does not fit right! Then check that the saddle is not resting on top of the withers, both at the gullet area and toward the stirrup attachment or bar. Buy from a company that has a champion endurance riding legacy. Produced with the participation of the best endurance riders. How To Choose A Good Saddle That Fits You, Your Horse And Your Style Of Riding - Part 1. Prices range from $670 to $1,500. Specifically designed for high-withered horses, such as Thoroughbreds and Warmbloods, with tree and panels specially shaped to give maximum wither clearance. For these physiques consider an adjustable tree. There are a whole lot of different models out there, varying enormously in terms of comfort, support, size, and suitability for different riding conditions, and you might be missing out or even putting yourself or your horse in danger and discomfort by using the wrong one! Horses with broad backs and low withers often do best with saddles that have hoop-shaped trees. • The Big Horn Haflinger Saddle, now made by American Saddlery, comes in leather and synthetic Western models, with 15 ½-inch and 16-inch seats. That doesn’t make for a happy horse.”. Circle Y Alabama Flex2 Trail Gaiter Saddle The use of front shims to lift the saddle balances the rider, while the extra width in the tree gives the horse great comfort and freedom of movement.”, If your horse is more angular, consider other options. Many Thoroughbreds and their crosses, Appendix Quarter Horses and other athletic riding types sport high, sharp---“shark”---withers that make saddle fitting tough. The Western-style trail saddle weighs just 24.5 pounds and has a soft, double-padded seat for rider comfort; it sells for $1,695. Browse at your convenience, order your saddle online, and have your local fitter out to assess the fit for you. Guaranteed fit using the EQUImeasure Kit! “You can be in a very wide Fidelio and be amazed at how comfortable it is.” Other ideas include suspending the tree slightly over the horse, but that can mean a loss of contact. In addition to riding, consider doing some cardio building exercise. This saddle is especially good for horses with an apex shaped back and is a good start up saddle for new riders. Riding Tights made from Bi way stretch Lycra featuring an Inner knee reinforcement with synthetic suede. The saddles are made in the U.S.A., priced from the $500s to $1,000. Endurance riding is a great challenge for both horse and rider. Go to www.cashelcompany.com/catalog. But some broad-backed horses aren’t built like your typical Thelwell pony. “The two- to three-finger rule isn’t an accurate measure.” Instead, Anderson suggests riding in the saddle for about 20 minutes. Saddle is very innovative thanks to used technology and materials. Eat properly, and try to go into the event rested. If your favorite view from the top of a horse consists of open fields, wooded paths, and scenic vistas, you might enjoy endurance riding. DESERT LIGHT is a very lightweight and comfortable endurance saddle made of a special, non-absorbing moisture, material. On the other side of the equation are those shark-withered Thorough­bred types who sprout white hairs even under a sky-high gullet. There is so much variation in this group that you’ll want to consult a certified saddle fitter or speak with a few manufacturer representatives to be sure. Some angles are narrow and steep; others are flat. High-withered horses will benefit from models with thicker gussets which fill in hollow areas behind the shoulders. And much of that discomfort can be traced to poor saddle fit.”, But if your horse has a hard-to-fit physique, you might be asking the question: "Is it even possible to achieve a good fit for him?". 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