I am adult ammy pleasure rider, I ride out of a h/j barn right now, but I like to "play" in low level hunters, jumpers, as well as eventing and dressage.
I have a close contact jumping saddle right now. I am planning on keeping my jumping saddle, but I would love to invest in a dressage saddle as well. My jumping saddle has a very short foward flap that isn't always ideal on the flat. I am 5'1" with very short legs, so I'm looking for a dressage saddle that wont eat up my whole leg.
I am looking to go the used route and would prefer to stay within my $1300 budget. I sat in some dressage saddles at the used tack store, and found that most flaps came down to my ankle.
Ideally, where should the bottom of the flap on a dressage saddle be on my leg? What brands make saddle better suited to short riders?
Vega (Amerigo) make a smaller fitting saddle (just like their clothing lines ), eg 17 saddle will have a 16 flap as "standard"
Prestige IME sits rather more generously than Vega & has a longer flap, eg 17 saddle will have 17 flap as "standard"
County - seat generousity varies between models, 17 saddle will usually have a 16 "standard" flap (the Fusion has a longer standard flap); I have an old 16.5 Competitor with a 15.5 flap (standard at the time for that model)
Most "short" flaps are ~1" shorter than a company's "standard" flap
a lot of the petite riders at my barn ride in 16" Prestige 2000Ds and seem to be happy with them. The Trilogy Debbie McDonald is specifically designed for the petite rider (and all their other saddles can be made with short flaps and other options)
I love smaller chelderics!! Prestiege is my second. I am 4'10 my thighs are longer than my proportions so depending on the saddle 16.5-18" saddles. I am also plus sized if tgat helps. Now just need the money to match my tastes
I have a Passier Grand Gilbert with custom short flaps. I got it when I was 8 years old, and it is a lovely saddle. Passier saddles are great quality and really put you in a good position. My trainer swears by Passier and she has an Antares. They are both lovely saddles.
I'm 5'1 and bought an old Stubben Tristen from another COTH member. She's tall, but I'd been wanting to try one and they aren't often up for sale! The flap is definitely longer than ideal - in this pic I'm handily wearing shorts which scrunched inside my boots and my pants pulled up so you can see the bottom of the pants, which is right were the end of the flap hits. It doesn't keep me from using my leg at all, and the fact the flap is a bit straighter is a HUGE help for me. http://a7.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphot...31171480_o.jpg
Regardless of seat size, typically dressage saddles have flaps which are too far forward for me and put me in a chair seat if they're used saddles. At your price range, I'd suggest a used nicer saddle rather than new and lower quality.
I'm hoping my horse stops outgrowing saddles at some point so I can go up in price range, but since we've been through three in two years because of his topline developing I'm not ready to buy a new one yet. But I still drool over the idea of a new Genesis Special. I prefer no blocks or padding because they never fit me right, but the ones on this saddle at least hit in the right spot so the dip in the saddle from being broken in by people whose legs reach doesn't suck my legs forward to my horse's ears.
My horse is a dressage diva so I don't have to be.
Originally Posted by katarine
If you have a fat gay horse that likes Parelli, you're really screwed
I'm about your size - depending on how much you have to spend - My first dressage saddle was a Neidersuss symphony to start with, which is about 2K new or 1K used. Their normal flaps are shorter than a normal dressage saddle but they also can be ordered with short flaps. This is a good first dressage saddle, as it's not very deep. Give it a try to see if if you like the saddle and it fits your horse. I currently have a Trilogy Debbie MacDonald Special. These saddles are specifically designed for petite riders. New about 3700 or used about 2500 depending on the condition. See if there is a dealer in your area they will come out and let your try the saddles and you can determine if this is the right saddle for you and your horse. Good luck!
I'm 5'3" but have most of my height in my torso. I currently ride in a 16.5" Luc Childeric, which is a monoflap. After riding in a 17", liking it and deciding I needed a 16.5", I found a very nice used one, but it took a LOT of hunting online. Infact, when I did find one, the woman at the tack shop said, "you know this is small right?...like really small."
Personally, as a short person, I like monoflap saddles because they generally have shorter flaps and that was important to me.
A gal at the barn about your size with a large pony has a Stubben Juventus on trial from the Stubben rep and just ordered one. It's a lovely saddle and very inexpensive, I have seen them in like new condition for less than $1000. I think they are pretty inexpensive new.