Saddle Fitting Explained
Why should I get my Saddle professionally fitted?
A saddle will probably be the most expensive single item which you will buy for your horse so it is really important that the choice you make is guided by someone who has extensive knowledge and experience in fitting these brands.
It is important to take into account the horses breed, type, size and conformation when fitting the saddle, the horses’ welfare is always the most important consideration, we can then change different aspects of the saddle to make you as the rider more comfortable so that the individual horse and rider combinations can achieve optimum comfort and performance.
There can be few horse owners who now fail to recognise that the saddle, and the way in which it fits, is fundamentally important to the welfare, comfort and success of both horse and rider. There is greater understanding that horses ‘change shape’ for a variety of reasons and so the saddle which provided an acceptable fit when it was purchased may require adjustment, alteration and even – in some cases – exchange at a later date.
What should I consider with a new saddle fitting?
- The size,width and shape of the tree must be suited to the horse
- The size of the saddle must be suitable for horse and rider
- The saddle must be balanced and sit your weight where the horse is designed to take it.
- The saddle must remain centrally located at all paces and free from excessive movement such as swinging, swaying, rocking and rotating
- The tree must be entirely symmetrical
- The panel of the saddle must be completely symmetrical.
- The girth should lie within the girth groove and, when adjusted, not pull the saddle forward
What facilities and availability will the saddle fitter need?
- A flat, hard surface where the horse can be examined and run up in hand if necessary
- An arena, school or area where the horse can be safely ridden, and in the winter months it is essential that this is well lit.
- The horse – presented in a well groomed condition
- Any numnah or pad which you propose using