shallow or medium vs deep seats - what brands/models have them?
I'm looking for brands and models of dressage saddles that have shallow or medium seats, rather than deep seats - what brands/models have them?
I've spent the last 2 years in a County Connection.
Recently I rode in a saddle that made me go "wow"!
Now I want that wonderful feeling, so I'm saddle shopping. I was told the difference is the deep seat vs a more open seat, so I hope the coth'ers have experiences they can share on this, and saddles to reccomend.
I am in the market for a Passier because I have found their seats to give me the most freedom of movement. They have regular and deep- but even their deep seat isn't anywhere near some of the buckets on the market.
When I bought the saddle, my first goal was my horse's back, and this saddle is a great fit for him. I figured my seat would improve over time, so then the saddle would feel better, right?
Yes my seat improved; no, the saddle actually feels worse now.
Currently, my County saddle's pommel hurts the front of my seat. It's a struggle to keep in position. It also feels like it pulls my legs up & forward. If I fight against that, then my leg is behind the "stirrup/leg indentation" (what word describes the hollowed in spot in the flap where the saddle expects your leg to be, the spot behind the knee roll?). I've been told that it looks like it throws my seat back onto the cantle. Maybe the cantle, pommel and stirrup placement aren't in harmony on this saddle for my body. I don't think it's larger knee rolls matter much, despite others' preferences for smaller.
The other saddle, an ancient mono-flap model labeled as a Bates/Wintec: http://esvx.onodot.com/
It feels so much easier to just sit, stretch down, and get to work in this saddle.
I liked how the pommel is so much lower (it doesn't hurt!) I feel can sit closer to the stirrups instead of "so far behind" them (and I like the lower cantle, but the pommel seems to make the biggest difference.) My hip & leg open/stretch nicely. My knee is comfy with the flatter knee rolls, they seem fine.
Last edited by myamigo; Nov. 7, 2009 at 12:28 AM.
Reason: trying to get images to show.
If you are hitting the front of the saddle it may be because the twist is too narrow. I had that problem. Now I have a deep seated medium twist(Schleese). I had a shallow seated , narrow twist before. (Roosli)
it's not the edge of the earth, but you can see it from here
Actually, the Wintec 500--the old model--might be to your liking, though the stirrup bars are forward and that could be an issue.
I thought the Wintec 500 felt almost identical *to me* to a Stubben Schulteis. (sp) which is as minimal and flat as you get for dressage.
The new wintecs are *different* in the seat. Might be worth a sit.
OLD Passiers, the kind with the moulded flap are very flat and open. I called mine the AbMaster for the first few months. Check them for stirrup bar position, some are quite (too) forward, some are setback.
The new Passiers can be ordered in a normal/shallow seat, but as a rule the ones for sale in the US are the deep seat, you have to special order (no charge) the 'shallow' seat, which is actually the regular.
Courbettes have a shallower seat, but the waist doesn't agree with everyone, and there are few options in tree width. (wide isn't really, and 'adjustible' really isn't either. )
Stubben Scandica's have a very open seat. I don't know what your budget is, but a used one will be in the $650-$850 range. The Kieffer Wein also is in that price range (actually less) has a less deep seat compared to other Kieffers. Some of the really old Kieffers were known for having hard seats, but the newer ones have a soft seat.
I found a used OLD Passier that I liked today, but it was too narrow for my horse.
The new saddles at the local shops are Stubbens (but they are bannana panels and my horse is suited to a gusseted, flatter panel shape) and Wintec & Bates. I tried a Bates Caprilli, but it had a funny bulge in the middle of the panel. I've heard the new Wintecs have a choice of CAIR or flocking, but it does not seem Bates has that option.
I think I tried a Kieffer Wein a few years back - will look around for some locally.
FYI, I tried the new PRO with the contour blocks. Knee not close enough to blocks to make a diff. Seat felt odd.
Since the County hasn't lasted as long as I planned, I don't want to spend more than $1500 or so.
If I can find a set I like and a shape to fit my horse, all in 1 saddle, then I'm game to watch ebay and hunt for a deal on that model.
The Passier Relevant has a pretty open seat. I detest deep seated dressage saddles, and just love my Relevant! It's knee blocks can be ordered in several styles as well, and I have the smaller ones, that fit more like a jumping knee block. Heaven, I tell you! I happened to find mine at a local tack shop and it happened to fit my mare. Had I been able to order it, I would have gone up to an 18", for that extra bit of thigh room, but as it is, the 17.5 works well for me. FWIW, I am 5'7" with a very *ample* thigh!