Saddle Fitting Consultation

There can be many reasons why you need to have your saddle checked or re-fitted. Below are some easy to spot signs for when your saddle may need some attention.

And remember, horses can change shape over time, so even a saddle that was once fitted, or even made to measure, may not now fit properly. This can happen as a result of age, workload, weight, breed and many more reasons. It’s always worth getting your saddle checked every six months to ensure it still fits well.

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Signs your saddle may need attention

The most common reasons for contacting a saddle fitter:

  • Cold backed
  • Shortened stride
  • Unwillingness to go forward
  • Tripping excessively
  • Being girthy/unhappy when tightening the girth
  • White hairs or sores developing under the saddle
  • Bucking, rearing and nipping

Other signs to look out for:

  • Your saddle sits right up at the front when girthed – If the saddle is raised more than a fist at the front, while tipping down at the back, it’s a general indication that your saddle is too narrow and pinching in the withers.
  • Your saddle has no clearance over the wither and the pommel sits right down on the horse’s withers – This would usually indicate the saddle is too wide and could therefore cause pressure and discomfort.
  • Your saddle is throwing you forward and lifting at the back when riding – The saddle could be too wide and dropping at the front or the tree is too curved, causing a rocking motion which will lead to uneven weight distribution and central pressure.
  • It just doesn’t look right – Getting a saddle fitting just right can be a matter of feel and experience. If the saddle just doesn’t look as it should and you can’t work out why, we’d recommend getting an expert to take a look.

What to expect during your consultation

  • Full saddle evaluation, including on site flocking adjustment if needed.
  • Horse evaluation, including taking templates of your horses back.
  • Mounted assessment of the saddle fit, although you won’t be asked to ride in a saddle that clearly doesn’t fit. Ideally an arena is the most suitable place for this, but if you don’t have one, don’t worry – a dry and flat field will be fine.