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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan. 8, 2004
    Location
    IN
    Posts
    2,604

    Default Saddle Fitter in MI

    Any leads on a saddle fitter in MI that works on dressage saddles?



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep. 17, 2003
    Location
    Toronto, Canada
    Posts
    496

    Default Daniela Dutton

    Depending on where you're located, you might want to call Daniela Dutton.
    I've only spoken to her over the phone, but she was very helpful and informative.

    http://www.michigansaddles.com/
    Proud Rubenesquestrian



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep. 16, 2006
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    313

    Default

    There is Pam Omer, who is the Albion representative, and Luanne Reaume, who is the Schleese representative. They can look at other saddles too.



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar. 9, 2005
    Location
    mid-Michigan
    Posts
    1,475

    Default

    http://www.greatlakessaddler.com/ Tracie is a Custom Saddlery rep, but like the above, works on all saddles.



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan. 8, 2004
    Location
    IN
    Posts
    2,604

    Default

    Thanks, guys!



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun. 6, 2005
    Location
    The Big Mitt
    Posts
    1,714

    Default

    Avoid Pam Olmer!!!!! She is less than useless, she actually causes issues that hurt the horse.

    added, the best saddler in MI is Robin Hosler. He can build/rebuild as well as simply fit a saddle. He is great at moving the stirrup bars to give optimal balance.
    Last edited by Elegante E; Aug. 14, 2008 at 02:02 PM.



  7. #7
    Join Date
    May. 8, 2008
    Posts
    7

    Thumbs up

    I would suggest you call Sally Dietrich out of Fenton, she is building a very good reputation. She has a great eye and is very good at evaluating horse and rider issues. Sally works with Trilogy but will not pressure you, she will do her best to make what you have work. But one of the best parts is that her flocking is soft and flat to take care of the horses back. Find her contact info on the Performance Saddlery website.



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug. 21, 2007
    Location
    Here, there and everywhere
    Posts
    82

    Default

    While I agree that Robin Hosler is the best saddle fitter around, I think saying Pam Omer can cause problems is kind of rude. I know people who have used her without problems. What's your basis for this claim?



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan. 5, 2002
    Location
    Michigan (Next to Hell... seriously!)
    Posts
    3,128

    Default

    Actually, I agree with Elegante E. PM us for details.

    I've heard a lot of positives regarding Robin and a friend of mine seems happy with Tracie. Our barn uses Renna VanDooren.

    Robin's contact info is: 810-610-8232 and I believe he's based out of Flint but will travel quite a distance to clients.
    Renna is based in Perry and contact info is: 517-468-1177 (home) or cell is 248-921-6446
    *bad shoulder clique * Member of "OMGiH, I loff my Mare" Clique! * Proud owner of a CANTER Cutie!
    My Horses; COMH Page; My Blog



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep. 13, 2000
    Location
    Greenville, MI,
    Posts
    12,908

    Exclamation I was about to say!

    Quote Originally Posted by sunkistbey View Post
    While I agree that Robin Hosler is the best saddle fitter around, I think saying Pam Omer can cause problems is kind of rude. I know people who have used her without problems. What's your basis for this claim?
    Pam was great when I worked with her several years ago. She advised against getting the albions I tried on my horse, said they were not right for him. I have seen her do many good things, and correct problem saddles all without pressure. I suggest if the person had trouble that she contact Pam, I have never known her to not make a problem right!
    "you can only ride the drama llama so hard before it decides to spit in your face." Caffeinated.



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Dec. 7, 2001
    Location
    Port Orange, FL
    Posts
    1,924

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by ironbessflint View Post
    http://www.greatlakessaddler.com/ Tracie is a Custom Saddlery rep, but like the above, works on all saddles.
    Tracie does really a good job ... She is very nice too. I know a few people who were very happy with her work.



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun. 6, 2005
    Location
    The Big Mitt
    Posts
    1,714

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by sunkistbey View Post
    While I agree that Robin Hosler is the best saddle fitter around, I think saying Pam Omer can cause problems is kind of rude. I know people who have used her without problems. What's your basis for this claim?
    It's based on the fact that she "fitted" a saddle to my horse (it was sliding forward) and afterwards my horse developed a divit in his back muscle. Even though she came out saying she'd fit the saddle for me, she just told me to change the gullet (it was a bates) and did nothing else. When I had Robin look at the same saddle later, he said it was too long for my horse and the gussetting was causing a big pressure point (the gusseting could have been improved to avoid the problem, but the saddle didn't fit me all that well, so I sold it). Pam never mentioned the gussets or the length. Oh and when I asked her if the flocking needed adjusting, she said no.

    I've spoken with others who had horses have back problems after using Pam but would not post as I did on that basis.

    Yes, I know it's harsh to say what I did and I was hesitant to do so but Pam puts herself out there as a saddler, which I don't think she is. She's barely a fitter in my book.



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Sep. 13, 2000
    Location
    Greenville, MI,
    Posts
    12,908

    Thumbs up Fair enough!

    Quote Originally Posted by Elegante E View Post
    It's based on the fact that she "fitted" a saddle to my horse (it was sliding forward) and afterwards my horse developed a divit in his back muscle. Even though she came out saying she'd fit the saddle for me, she just told me to change the gullet (it was a bates) and did nothing else. When I had Robin look at the same saddle later, he said it was too long for my horse and the gussetting was causing a big pressure point (the gusseting could have been improved to avoid the problem, but the saddle didn't fit me all that well, so I sold it). Pam never mentioned the gussets or the length. Oh and when I asked her if the flocking needed adjusting, she said no.

    I've spoken with others who had horses have back problems after using Pam but would not post as I did on that basis.

    Yes, I know it's harsh to say what I did and I was hesitant to do so but Pam puts herself out there as a saddler, which I don't think she is. She's barely a fitter in my book.
    That is really poor practice on her part.
    Good to know. On another note I have not seen her in 4 years, and peoples practices can change. Sometimes I think its the burnout factor.
    I have heard people Rave about Robin.. he knows his stuff!
    "you can only ride the drama llama so hard before it decides to spit in your face." Caffeinated.



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jan. 23, 2001
    Location
    Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    299

    Default Robin

    Robin is very good. He was trained by Jochen Schleese



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jul. 27, 2007
    Location
    Behind the Orange Curtain
    Posts
    9,694

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Elegante E View Post
    It's based on the fact that she "fitted" a saddle to my horse (it was sliding forward) and afterwards my horse developed a divit in his back muscle. Even though she came out saying she'd fit the saddle for me, she just told me to change the gullet (it was a bates) and did nothing else. When I had Robin look at the same saddle later, he said it was too long for my horse and the gussetting was causing a big pressure point (the gusseting could have been improved to avoid the problem, but the saddle didn't fit me all that well, so I sold it). Pam never mentioned the gussets or the length. Oh and when I asked her if the flocking needed adjusting, she said no.
    Interesting to hear that he was trained by Jochen Schleese- I think saddle/panel length and the muscle divot is something he focuses on more than other fitters. Jochen Schleese fit my horse and he said the same thing (pointed out a divot from previous saddles that were too long, and swept up the panels in the back to avoid that area).

    I think many fitters are not so detailed as Jochen Schleese (and, I assume, those who follow his methods). I know not everyone agrees with all of his opinions, but the saddle he fitted has worked really well for me.



  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jan. 5, 2002
    Location
    Michigan (Next to Hell... seriously!)
    Posts
    3,128

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Sannois View Post
    That is really poor practice on her part.
    Good to know. On another note I have not seen her in 4 years, and peoples practices can change. Sometimes I think its the burnout factor.
    I have heard people Rave about Robin.. he knows his stuff!
    It's just been within the last 3 years or so that I've heard more complaints about Pam. Something has just changed drastically about her from what I heard.

    Renna, although very blunt in his opinion... is very similar in practice to Robin. What I've heard about Tracie so far, sounds like she really knows her stuff and will work with pretty much any saddle that has a wood tree.
    *bad shoulder clique * Member of "OMGiH, I loff my Mare" Clique! * Proud owner of a CANTER Cutie!
    My Horses; COMH Page; My Blog



  17. #17
    imdram Guest

    Default saddle fitting

    A client informed me of your discussion about saddle fitting on this forum. First, let me express my sincere apology to the rider who was unhappy with the results of their saddle fitting. I am Pam Omer, the fitter you referenced. Please know that if you contact me with your name, the name of your horse and the date of your fitting, I will reimburse you for your fitting fee on that day. I regret that you did not inform me of your dissatisfaction so that it may have been addressed at the time. You should know that I always determine the length of the horse's back during a fitting, and have always done so. Not knowing your name, I cannot say what happened during our time together. Each rider, each horse, each fitting is unique.

    Unfortunately, saddle fitting is not an exact science as fitters are working with "clients" who cannot speak English. It is hoped that training, field work and time with horses aids in this regard. But, without doubt, fitters will err because of this. As with any professional in the field, the longer a professional is in the field and the larger their client base, the greater their chance for err, the more criticism will exist. Trainers, ferriers, chiropractors, veternarians, all strive to give their very best to the equine world. But that is all it can be, their very best. At times they may fall short of that mark, but what is important is that they try to achieve that goal, which I do every day I take to the road. When a ferrier, trainer, vet, chiropractor, misses the mark with a rider, we move on to someone who we feel has more expertise, deals with us and our horse better, makes us feel more confident, addresses our situation more completely. That is the way of the horse world. That is how it should be. That is what keeps professionals striving for their "best." I am glad that you found a fitter that could resolve the problem you and your horse were experiencing.

    It is impossible to please everyone, we all know this. It is even more impossible to achieve consistent perfection. I have helped reduce pain in many, many horses. That is what keeps me going - the goal to better the horse world. But I am sure there were times I did not reach my mark. In many situations, I have had to return again and again until a solution was found that helped create comfort and balance for the horse. As all riders know, balance takes time.

    Remember that when selecting your fitter, the most important criteria should be that whomever you choose to fit the saddle to yourself and your horse be committed unequivocally to the health and welfare of the horse. I have never been anything else.

    As for the discussion about burnout - I believe that anyone who is truly passionate about what they do will not burn out until the passion does. Mine has not. I love what I do and will always strive to be better, to learn more, to be open minded and willing to take criticism, to learn from my errs and grow as long as it is on behalf of the horse. Good luck and safe riding.



  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jan. 9, 2007
    Posts
    250

    Default I'm confused!

    I bought a used Passier saddle when I purchased my horse and had a saddle fitter re-work the tree etc to fit the horse.

    Now 6 months later, I was told by another trainer that the horse looks like he's uncomfortable and not coming through. The trainer thought he looked "impinged".

    I had a different saddle fitter look at the saddle and they said it did not fit my horse at all.

    So here's my question: How many people have had more than one saddle fitter look at their horse/saddle and did they give you the same opinion or did they tell you 2 different things?
    Then the next question is: Who is right? Saddle fitter #1 or saddle fitter #2?

    According to saddle fitter #2, my saddle (even if re-done, would never fit the horse correctly).

    What would you guys suggest I do?

    PS. The horse has not changed drastically in the last 6 months. No huge muscle gain, no massive weight changes.
    Love your horse like it's the last time you'll see him



  19. #19
    Join Date
    Dec. 29, 2008
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    238

    Default

    I've used Pam Omer and she makes regular trips to my barn and I can say nothing but good things about her!

    I have a friend who had a custom Albion saddle for her gelding and through less than correct riding by the eq. team at the college(left un-named), he ended up with an atrophied shoulder. After Pam came out and saw him/fitted his saddle/gave suggestions on how to re-build his muscle, he's done nothing but improve.

    My new guy is in need of a fitting and I fully plan on having Pam look at him. My trainer's used her for years and has had nothing so much as a glitch!
    I know now, the place that I was trying to reach, was you, right here in front of me



  20. #20
    Join Date
    Jan. 26, 2007
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    342

    Default

    Looks like most of Michigan is either using Pam or Robin but might I suggest....Renna' VanDooren who owns Colonial Saddler & Harness Co. (517)468-1177. He is a Bespoke Saddler who has served the horse industry in Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Florida since 1993. Renna teaches saddle making courses in Sweden, tours Sweden several times a year giving saddle fitting demonstrations and lectures and is the founder of the Equine Independant Saddlers Guild.

    My barn uses Renna' exclusively and I just rode in a clinic that also had him there as one of the professionals and he fit each persons saddle and gave recommendations and advice. he certainy knows his stuff. I was quite impressed. I have used Robin in the past but now I would not use anyone but Renna'.
    www.cricklewooddressage.com

    Fiber Luxe Horse Blanket Cleaning and Repair



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