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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun. 30, 2008
    Location
    Minneapolis
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    428

    Default saddle fitting training

    Hello everyone,

    I am interested in becoming a saddle fitter and I am having trouble locating credible training. If you are a saddle fitter or know of training, please let me know.

    Feel free to reply to this thread or send me a message.

    TIA



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun. 30, 2008
    Location
    Minneapolis
    Posts
    428

    Default

    Bump! Nobody knows where to get some training?



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar. 25, 2010
    Posts
    1,098

    Default

    Annette Gavin at Hastilow USA runs periodic saddle fitting training. It is mostly an introductory course, but might get you started.



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan. 29, 2008
    Location
    Ottawa,Ontario
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    1,595

    Default

    Good question! I'm sure many of us have been to saddle fitting clinics in the past, and they're ok, but wouldn't it be cool to actually learn the trade? It'd be even better if there was an expert for hire, one who doesn't have a brand affiliation.I'd love to learn and do fittings as a part time, evening and weekends, job.
    Sorry, not much help for you in my post.
    Adding: maybe contact a saddle maker and ask? Shmoooze with local tack shops who may not offer the service but may be willing to point you in the right direction? Contact a brand that has no rep in your area, maybe they will aid you in training if you commit to representing their brand in your area?
    For instance, I'd love a Black Country saddle, no reps that I can find for the whole east side of Canada....I think they may have a rep in Alberta, a 4 day drive from Ontario......see where I'm going?
    "My doctrine is this, that if we see cruelty or wrong that we have the power to stop, and do nothing, we make ourselves sharers in the guilt.”
    ― Anna Sewell



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul. 31, 2007
    Posts
    14,506

    Default

    OP, Kitt Hazelton who posts here sometimes is a pro saddle fitter. She used to work for Trumbull Mountain (a tack store known for doing good saddle fitting at a distance). I think she is independent now. Try PMing her? She's very nice.
    The armchair saddler
    Politically Pro-Cat



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb. 28, 2004
    Location
    Sandgate, VT
    Posts
    891

    Default

    MVP, thanks for the kind words - greatly appreciated!

    Sheltona01, Annette Gavin's the SMS organizer here in the US. Their courses are great. There are other educational options, and I'd be happy to tell you about them. Please feel free to PM me.



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul. 31, 2007
    Posts
    14,506

    Default

    Thanks for showing up, Kitt!

    Annette Gavin is nice as well. The SMS course (Society of Master Saddlers aka hardcore gild in England) is a serious commitment. IIRC, they have created a branch for saddle fitters as opposed to saddlers (those who build saddles from the ground up).
    The armchair saddler
    Politically Pro-Cat



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb. 28, 2004
    Location
    Sandgate, VT
    Posts
    891

    Default

    Oops - forgot to add that I did a couple of blog posts on saddle fitting education at http://saddlefitter.blogspot.com/200...le-fitter.html and http://saddlefitter.blogspot.com/201...ng-course.html. Some of the info is a little dated, but mostly still fresh and good!



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb. 15, 2004
    Location
    Ontario
    Posts
    7,454

    Default

    I have heard that there are some weekend courses (or week long courses) to attend in the US (not sure where yet), plus an apprenticeship with certified fitters for as long as 3 years and then a trip to England as the final stamp on the training. Don't know the details though. Still up in the air!



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar. 6, 2006
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    507

    Default

    You can also apply as a rep for a saddle company like County or Schleese and they will train you. You will need sales and buisness experience in order to land these jobs though.

    I was SUPER close to having a position with County not long ago - I have over 10 years experience in sales/customer service/buisness and closer to 20 with horses. I was still passed up for someone with more experience then I have.



  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jan. 24, 2000
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    2,809

    Default

    The Schleese program is excellent. If you want to go with a brand, that would be my first choice. Other brand-rep-associated training I have seen has been very basic. Training via Schleese is quite comprehensive and turns out skilled fitters who are able to work competently on any number of saddles.

    There are independent schools, as well. There is a good 6-month course in SC, for instance.
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  12. #12
    Join Date
    Mar. 6, 2006
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    507

    Default

    Totally agree. One of my best friends is a Schleese trained fitter, though she's independent now. She's VERY good at her job, and is always the person I call to fit my saddles.

    Quote Originally Posted by coloredhorse View Post
    The Schleese program is excellent. If you want to go with a brand, that would be my first choice. Other brand-rep-associated training I have seen has been very basic. Training via Schleese is quite comprehensive and turns out skilled fitters who are able to work competently on any number of saddles.

    There are independent schools, as well. There is a good 6-month course in SC, for instance.



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