More Saddle Fit
SADDLE FIT - Part II
I have updated learning to share and questions to answer from emails from poor souls out there trying to find a saddle that won't hurt their horse.
Question I get the most is what do I mean when I say, Cut Back Saddle Pad? This is a pad that is built up to fit the coutour of the horse's higher withers and usually it's cut out right at the withers. There is usually a strap that holds to two front ends together. This kind of pad lifts the saddle up and really helps our downhill horse.
Another question is that I am experienced only in Western Saddles. I've gotten questions from people about English saddles and can't answer them.
The Australian saddle fit really great. BUT, It slipped to the front of the horse when we started moving. I had to put one of those sticky pads between the real saddle pad and the saddle, just to hold it in place. I tried a crupper, but that's just not in my style of riding. You never see a barrel racer or reiner with a crupper. yecha
The saddle weighed about 150 lbs. I found myself getting exhausted after I hauled it out of the tack room and carried it 3 feet to my horse!
Then, my back started going out. Short woman trying to sling a 150 ton saddle up over a horse is not good. I tried to get up on something to sling the saddle over my horse's back. WELL HA! Try that out in the wilderness. Even at the barn I had to lug the 150 thousand pound monster out to the mounting block, which about did me in for the day.
One day I set out on a great adventure with my horse. We were going to join a trail ride about 80 miles from home. I carried the 150 million pound monster from the tack room to the trailer. I stopped at a store about 15 miles from home. As I exited my truck, my back went south. I had just enough back left to crawl back into the cab and drive to the stable. I yelled for help. Someone got Sage out of the trailer and I drove to the emergency room.
I sold the saddle!
A GREAT DISCOVERY!
Air Pads and Circle Y Flex Lite SaddleI have a good friend who does major trail riding. This person goes to Colorado in the summer and you might not see him for days. He's out on the trails. He's got several horses with different body types. One of his friends had been bragging about his saddle and how it fits all his horses. My friend couldn't take it anymore and took his cheapskate self to the store and bought a Circle Y Flex Lite saddle. It has a neoprene tree. He used his saddle for a year on all his horses with no dry spots and no soreness.
That meant that I had to buy one. I fell in love with it immediately. I didn't want to. I don't like in skirt rigging saddles. I loved it so much that I bought another one. I now have two wide width saddles...one square and one round. They weigh less than 20 lbs. There is no tree to dig into my downhill horse's withers. oh happy back!
I use air pads to make certain that the saddle doesn't touch the horse's backbone. I use the honeycomb airpad, Supracor. I also use Pat Parelli's Thera-Flex air pad. The Thera-Flex saddle adjusts automatically for the horse's back.
I no longer have saddle fit problems. I now ride Heck Bent for Leather! yee haw! 02-06 -I've now bought a 4 Beat Saddle made by the Amish and Brenda Ismus. I love it. It also has a flexible tree. It tips back. It has flair and doesn't put weight on the withers. It also has an amazing rigging. You have two long straps that start from the back saddle ring and cinch up to the front ring..on both sides. This makes the girth stay a nice distance away from the horse's elbow.