I met with the saddle fitter from CS this weekend at Del Mar, and we are going to start over. Fitter will come to the barn and we will revisit everything. Fitter and CS want to make this work, and I am hopeful.
I sat on some saddles at the show (not on a real live moving horse). I don't think I EVER was sitting on my seatbones in the saddle I ordered. I was sitting on my crotch the whole time. Explains a lot. We shall see what happens on my live horse.
Sheilah, BUY that saddle that you love!!!
LarkspurCO: no horse's training is complete until it can calmly yet expressively perform GP in stadium filled w/chainsaw juggling zombies riding unicycles while flying monkeys w/bottle rockets...
I have had the same experience with my new horse's saddle. I had one made by Custom Saddlery that KILLS my back. Have tried several off the rack and used saddles. Finally broke down and I'm having a Hennig rep out from Germany to take measures for a custom saddle. Pricey but I'm at a point that I will pay just about anything to ride in a saddle that's comfortable for me and my pony!
Here is the thing about custom saddles; no matter who makes them nobody-that I am aware of-makes the tree custom, even on full custom saddles. The tree is what determines how the seat is oriented for the rider and how the saddle is actually positioned on the horses back.
To make finding the right saddle easier, you need to get an idea of what kind of tree works best for you and your horse and go from there.
nhwr, good point about trees all being "stock" models, even on bench-made (aka "custom") saddles. The tree can be strained a little differently, or a tree can be made with a more built-up cantle, or the placement of the stirrup bars can be altered, and this will effect the way it rides to a degree. But it is the rigid frame of the saddle, and needs to be basically correct for the horse and rider, in width and shape as well as in type (hoop vs. standard).