• Welcome to the Chronicle Forums.
    Please complete your profile. The forums and the rest of www.chronofhorse.com has single sign-in, so your log in information for one will automatically work for the other. Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here are the views of the individual and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of The Chronicle of the Horse.



Forum rules and no-advertising policy

As a participant on this forum, it is your responsibility to know and follow our rules. Please read this message in its entirety.

Board Rules

1. You’re responsible for what you say.
As outlined in Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, The Chronicle of the Horse and its affiliates, as well Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd., the developers of vBulletin, are not legally responsible for statements made in the forums.

This is a public forum viewed by a wide spectrum of people, so please be mindful of what you say and who might be reading it—details of personal disputes are likely better handled privately. While posters are legally responsible for their statements, the moderators may in their discretion remove or edit posts that violate these rules. Users have the ability to modify or delete their own messages after posting, but administrators generally will not delete posts, threads or accounts upon request.

Outright inflammatory, vulgar, harassing, malicious or otherwise inappropriate statements and criminal charges unsubstantiated by a reputable news source or legal documentation will not be tolerated and will be dealt with at the discretion of the moderators.

2. Conversations in horse-related forums should be horse-related.
The forums are a wonderful source of information and support for members of the horse community. While it’s understandably tempting to share information or search for input on other topics upon which members might have a similar level of knowledge, members must maintain the focus on horses.

3. Keep conversations productive, on topic and civil.
Discussion and disagreement are inevitable and encouraged; personal insults, diatribes and sniping comments are unproductive and unacceptable. Whether a subject is light-hearted or serious, keep posts focused on the current topic and of general interest to other participants of that thread. Utilize the private message feature or personal email where appropriate to address side topics or personal issues not related to the topic at large.

4. No advertising in the discussion forums.
Posts in the discussion forums directly or indirectly advertising horses, jobs, items or services for sale or wanted will be removed at the discretion of the moderators. Use of the private messaging feature or email addresses obtained through users’ profiles for unsolicited advertising is not permitted.

Company representatives may participate in discussions and answer questions about their products or services, or suggest their products on recent threads if they fulfill the criteria of a query. False "testimonials" provided by company affiliates posing as general consumers are not appropriate, and self-promotion of sales, ad campaigns, etc. through the discussion forums is not allowed.

Paid advertising is available on our classifieds site and through the purchase of banner ads. The tightly monitored Giveaways forum permits free listings of genuinely free horses and items available or wanted (on a limited basis). Items offered for trade are not allowed.

Advertising Policy Specifics
When in doubt of whether something you want to post constitutes advertising, please contact a moderator privately in advance for further clarification. Refer to the following points for general guidelines:

Horses – Only general discussion about the buying, leasing, selling and pricing of horses is permitted. If the post contains, or links to, the type of specific information typically found in a sales or wanted ad, and it’s related to a horse for sale, regardless of who’s selling it, it doesn’t belong in the discussion forums.

Stallions – Board members may ask for suggestions on breeding stallion recommendations. Stallion owners may reply to such queries by suggesting their own stallions, only if their horse fits the specific criteria of the original poster. Excessive promotion of a stallion by its owner or related parties is not permitted and will be addressed at the discretion of the moderators.

Services – Members may use the forums to ask for general recommendations of trainers, barns, shippers, farriers, etc., and other members may answer those requests by suggesting themselves or their company, if their services fulfill the specific criteria of the original post. Members may not solicit other members for business if it is not in response to a direct, genuine query.

Products – While members may ask for general opinions and suggestions on equipment, trailers, trucks, etc., they may not list the specific attributes for which they are in the market, as such posts serve as wanted ads.

Event Announcements – Members may post one notification of an upcoming event that may be of interest to fellow members, if the original poster does not benefit financially from the event. Such threads may not be “bumped” excessively. Premium members may post their own notices in the Event Announcements forum.

Charities/Rescues – Announcements for charitable or fundraising events can only be made for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organizations. Special exceptions may be made, at the moderators’ discretion and direction, for board-related events or fundraising activities in extraordinary circumstances.

Occasional posts regarding horses available for adoption through IRS-registered horse rescue or placement programs are permitted in the appropriate forums, but these threads may be limited at the discretion of the moderators. Individuals may not advertise or make announcements for horses in need of rescue, placement or adoption unless the horse is available through a recognized rescue or placement agency or government-run entity or the thread fits the criteria for and is located in the Giveaways forum.

5. Do not post copyrighted photographs unless you have purchased that photo and have permission to do so.

6. Respect other members.
As members are often passionate about their beliefs and intentions can easily be misinterpreted in this type of environment, try to explore or resolve the inevitable disagreements that arise in the course of threads calmly and rationally.

If you see a post that you feel violates the rules of the board, please click the “alert” button (exclamation point inside of a triangle) in the bottom left corner of the post, which will alert ONLY the moderators to the post in question. They will then take whatever action, or no action, as deemed appropriate for the situation at their discretion. Do not air grievances regarding other posters or the moderators in the discussion forums.

Please be advised that adding another user to your “Ignore” list via your User Control Panel can be a useful tactic, which blocks posts and private messages by members whose commentary you’d rather avoid reading.

7. We have the right to reproduce statements made in the forums.
The Chronicle of the Horse may copy, quote, link to or otherwise reproduce posts, or portions of posts, in print or online for advertising or editorial purposes, if attributed to their original authors, and by posting in this forum, you hereby grant to The Chronicle of the Horse a perpetual, non-exclusive license under copyright and other rights, to do so.

8. We reserve the right to enforce and amend the rules.
The moderators may delete, edit, move or close any post or thread at any time, or refrain from doing any of the foregoing, in their discretion, and may suspend or revoke a user’s membership privileges at any time to maintain adherence to the rules and the general spirit of the forum. These rules may be amended at any time to address the current needs of the board.

Please see our full Terms of Service and Privacy Policy for more information.

Thanks for being a part of the COTH forums!

(Revised 1/26/16)
See more
See less

Saddle Fit Question- shoulders

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Saddle Fit Question- shoulders

    Sigh. I'm admittedly fairly useless when it comes to saddle fitting. I feel hugely undereducated here. When the Schleese fitter last week said to ditch my ancient dressage saddle, I *tried* to pay attention to everything she said to look for. Tried.

    My jump saddle is a Passier Precision. It's a medium tree, and she was able to adjust the tree and reflock to get a very nice fit. My mare loves it. So I am trialing a Passier Antares. It's on the same PS Baum medium tree. Through the withers and back, it seems to fit her very nicely. But it's obviously a bit snug through her shoulders. She doesn't necessarily have broad shoulders... just big, super-slopey ones... if that makes sense. So... since the fitter was here a week ago, I won't be able to have her check this saddle during the trial (which ends Thursday), though I will have my trainer take a look tomorrow. I really like the saddle for me, and I'm trying to decide if this is something the fitter can work with. I have a super low budget and the price on this one was great... sending saddles back and forth really eats at the budget...

    So... if this saddle is restricting her shoulders, it's too... narrow, right? So it just needs to be widened? I don't know... if the saddle fits me well and I like the way I ride in it... and it fits my budget... would you send it back, or keep it and try to get it adjusted next time the fitter is out? (I'd obviously ride in something different in the mean time...) I guess I don't know what all is involved in fixing the problem.

    AND... can somebody point me to a good reference to read more about saddle fit? I try to read all the threads that pop up, but I feel like I just need a good basic primer so I know what the heck I'm reading about when I see terms like "gussets."

    I'm really not a stupid person. Just grew up in the world of "Saddle doesn't fit? Throw on another pad!" I need remedial coursework to catch up.

  • #2
    For basic understanding of saddle fit you might find a copy or dvd of "Pain Free Back and Saddle Fit" by Dr Joyce Harman DVM. A nice thorough written description of why and why not,lol.... Also seriously, TONS of pics . I have seen the book on Amazon , eBay and in some tack shops. good luck!


    • #3
      While pro-Stubben, this video will talk you through some fitting issues.


      Take note where he describes the front points of the tree. For a horse with big shoulders you may want swept back points and a flared front.
      Doubled Expectations (Roxy, 2001 APHA)
      Al Amir (Al, 2005 OTTB)
      Ten Purposes (Rosie, 2009 OTTB)


      • #4
        Originally posted by gypsymare View Post
        While pro-Stubben, this video will talk you through some fitting issues.


        Take note where he describes the front points of the tree. For a horse with big shoulders you may want swept back points and a flared front.
        Suffice it to say that, like most brand-sponsored saddle fitting videos, that video talks up one particular brand's design philosophies. And in the saddle world, there's usually more than one way to skin the cat. While it's true that you can accommodate a horse's shoulder by having swept-back tree points, there's five or six other valid ways to make room for a big laid-back shoulder. For example, here's how some other brands do it:
        --shorten and angle the tree point such that if it's not angled backward, it's still highly unlikely to contact the shoulder
        --instead of (or in combination with) a swept-back tree point, locate the tree point far enough back on the saddle tree that it's unlikely to contact the shoulder
        --never mind the tree point angle, just build up the front of the panel so that the whole saddle is lifted up and off the shoulder, leaving lots of soft "slide room" for the shoulder without the shoulder encountering the tree point
        --market your saddle as one that's designed to be used with a half pad, which functionally achieves what I just described above
        --design the tree point itself to be flexible so that it will allegedly move with the shoulder on the rare occasions that the shoulder might make contact with the tree point
        --elongate the tree point so that it distributes the weight across the entire shoulder and trapezius muscle

        I'm not saying that I drink all of the Kool Aids that I just described. I'm merely stating that there's a lot of fitting philosophies out there.

        But archieflies, for your purpose, here's the much simpler answer: we probably can't tell you, from this distance, what your options are. Even if you had two saddles with exactly the same tree and width, differences in panel design could have a substantial effect on the saddle's fit. There are also some brands of saddle where they use the "same" tree in their dressage and jump saddles BUT the dressage trees have elongated tree points. In those brands, the dressage saddles tend to fit more snugly than the jump saddles. It's also possible that although you have two saddles marked "medium," they could be different in centimeter-width measures; for example, a Passier 27 cm or 27.5 cm could both reasonably be referred to as a "medium."

        I know that's not the answer you wanted. Sorry. FWIW, widening a Passier is going to set you back at least $200-$300 and used Passier dressage saddles are a dime a dozen. If you buy this saddle and it doesn't work out, you may have a difficult time off-loading it. It's a pity since Passiers are fantastic saddles.

        For saddle terminology, start here:
        Head Geek at The Saddle Geek Blog http://www.thesaddlegeek.com/


        • #5
          You might contact a few shops/reps/fitters that deal extensively in Passier saddles & collect opinions

          Definitely speak with the fitter that just did your jump saddle & see what she thinks.

          Also check with the saddle owner about having the trial extended.

          The Schleese 9 points of saddle fit videos are worth watching


          • Original Poster

            Thanks, all! Time for me to get reading and watching videos!

            I'll take it along to my lesson tonight and get the trainer to take a peak, then I'll try to call the fitter tomorrow and see if she thinks she can work with it... Sounds like finding the right saddle may just take a while longer... Sure wish I could find a saddle-shaped horse! :-)


            • #7
              If the saddle's snug in the shoulders, it could be a tree width issue. Or a panel issue. If your mare has big shoulders, Passier's Freedom panels (which are attached 3/4" lower in the pommel arch to provide more room for beefier withers/shoulders) might be an option.

              Dr. Joyce Harman's book is a good one. My personal favorite is Galadriel Billington's "Saddle Fitting Essentials" (http://lorienstable.com/book/). Concise, easy to understand, and a steal as either a paperback ($9.99) or an e-book ($4.99).
              Kitt Hazelton
              Saddle Fitter


              • #8
                One very common issue is to place the saddle too far forward. Make sure the tree points are behind the shoulders. If the saddle is too narrow the horse will become more and more reluctant to bend and step out.
                Trumbull Mountain has many articles on its site about saddle fit, as well as, many used Passier saddles in different sizes and price points.
                Jay McGarry
                sms trained saddle fitter


                • #9
                  Just a thought for you, bearing in mind these were my trainer's ancient Passiers. The All Purpose/jump fit my Paint quite well in a medium tree. In the dressage we had to size up to a MW.


                  • Original Poster

                    Thanks, all. We decided that the saddle could be made to fit, but that maybe it isn't the right saddle for me. So I'll just ride in my jump saddle and borrow a dressage saddle when needed, until I can up the budget a bit. In the mean time, I've ordered a couple books to read up. Thanks for all the help!!