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Do yo prefer deep or flat seat saddles?

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  • Do yo prefer deep or flat seat saddles?

    I'm not sure if this has been asked but my saddle has more of a deep seat, though I've ridden in both. I don't really know which I prefer LOL, but I suppose I am just more used to a deeper seat.

    Which do you prefer? Are there pros or cons for each and how do they position the rider differently?

  • #2
    When I brought home my deep seat on trial, my trainer said it was a matter of personal preference and some people feel like with a deep seat they never get out of the saddle at a two-point. I feel like I'm more secure, but it's not a deal breaker for me if the saddle didn't have a deep seat.
    “Thoroughbreds are the best. They’re lighter, quicker, and more intelligent.” -George Morris

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    • #3
      I have both deep seat and flat seat saddles. I don't have a preference for one over the other in a general sense....it's much more about the horse it's sitting on. And really, if the saddle fits me well it makes absoutely zero difference to me how the seat is constructed. As long as the saddle is "okay," I don't notice it at all unless there's something that really sticks out. I went back and forth on my TB a few years ago between his custom County (with big knee blocks)and my OLD Clinton Northrup (old flat saddle with no pads/blocks of any sort) and I realized after switching up a few times that because both saddles fit him and fit me, I didn't notice anything about the saddles good or bad after the first 5 minutes in the tack.

      On the other hand, if the saddle doesn't fit me or the horse just right then I hate a deep seat that makes me feel "stuck," and I hate a flat seat that makes me feel like I'm sitting on a slippery postage stamp.
      __________________________________
      Flying F Sport Horses
      Horses in the NW

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      • #4
        I simply cannot get comfortable in a deep seat saddle, I simply feel disconnected from the horse.

        I should qualify this statement as many of the newer flat seats make me feel the same way.

        I like my old flat Bevals, and Hermes, in these I think I am much more able to feel the horses movements, and I imagine, the horse is much more able to feel mine.

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        • #5
          I'm no longer a fan of the old pancake seats, but the butet flat seat with no thigh blocks or knee blocks (just a knee roll) is fine by me. Bucket seats are not my favorite, although I suppose like anything else, I could get used to it. But with the $$ a good saddle costs, I'm not forking out the $$$ to find out the hard way I really don't like them! (so far a few hours in someone else's deep seat saddle has not been fun).
          Your crazy is showing. You might want to tuck that back in.

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          • #6
            When I was young I loved the feeling of a deep seat but in old age I much prefer a flatter seat. Although I have to admit, my flat seat CWD has a bit of a curve to the seat, its not pancake flat. I find in the Butet I also prefer the flat seat over the deep one.

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            • #7
              For dressage I like a deep seat; for a jump saddle I like a flat saddle so I can "skim the top".

              I ride hunters not jumpers and all of the dressage has me tending to sit on course and ride a little more "back" than the average hunter ride so maybe that has something to do with it. An extra flat seat helps counteract that tendency.
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              • #8
                Originally posted by CrackTheLatch View Post
                When I brought home my deep seat on trial, my trainer said it was a matter of personal preference and some people feel like with a deep seat they never get out of the saddle at a two-point. I feel like I'm more secure, but it's not a deal breaker for me if the saddle didn't have a deep seat.
                This is me. The deeper seats I've sat in are really harder for me to get out of without feeling like they're hitting me in the rump.
                A proud friend of bar.ka.

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                • #9
                  I feel too restricted in a deep seat saddle and this type of seat usually comes with an abundance of rolls, blocks, etc. which I don't care for. For flatwork I ride in an ancient Hermes, I feel a closer connection with my horses and the saddle forces me to ride properly with out the assistance of kneepads, kneerolls, and thigh blocks. For jumping and showing I have a flat seat CWD with small knee blocks only.

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                  • #10
                    I don't care one way or the other, what matters is how the saddle is balanced. I have both a pancake PDN and a pretty deep PJ and like both because the overall balance of each is right for my body type.

                    I used to be a real PDN snob but have to admit that I favor a cushier saddle these days, the soft calfskin and squishiness are just so pleasant when I'm walking around on a loose rein. Once I'm in action I don't notice so much.

                    I don't mind good blocks, but blocks should not be doing anything if your saddle fits you. If they are forcing your leg to do something, either they are not correct or your leg is not correct. They are supposed to help if something goes wrong, not force your leg into position.

                    My PJ's blocks are like they aren't even there. On the other hand, I cut out the pencil rolls from my PDN 10 years ago, right after I got it, because they wanted to push my leg too far back.

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                    • #11
                      When I was a kid and a huge chicken, I liked a deep seat. With the new horse I got a PDN because it fit HIM, discovered I didn't need blocks or knee rolls anyway, and am now considering getting an exercise saddle for daily tooling around as the gallopers seem to love them. (And they're probably softer than the PDN, but just about anything not granite would be. But my butt will live. His back likes this stuff better.)
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                      • #12
                        I hate a deep seat. I'm one of those people who feels like they never really get out of the saddle in a deep seat. I think it probably exacerbates it because I am short. I've always felt much more likely to sit down early on the landing side in a deep seat, and that is something I try to avoid.

                        I love riding in my 15" pony saddle. It feels a bit like riding bareback, but with a comfy seat and stirrups. It is too small for me, so it doesn't really get to have an opinion on my position--it is just there. My "normal" saddle is a 16" and it's got so many problems I don't even want to talk about it.

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                        • #13
                          PNW could have written my post for me! I ride my TB in a County Innovation and it fits both of us great. My dorkus baby horse has a Bates Fisher Price My First Saddle- the new H/J model- with a relatively flat seat compared to the County, and it works perfectly.

                          I find myself not caring about the depth as long as the thing fits me and the horse, but I've learned to appreciate a nice deep seat and some knee and thigh blocks going up to a big fence on a hard jumper!
                          You can take a line and say it isn't straight- but that won't change its shape. Jets to Brazil

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by fordtraktor View Post
                            I don't care one way or the other, what matters is how the saddle is balanced.
                            I agree with this completely. A year ago I would have said I generally preferred a deeper seat (even though I did recognize a slight issue in a 2 point position). After trying lots of saddles while saddle shopping this past fall, I came to understand that it is really all about how the saddle is balanced.
                            Riding a horse is not a gentle hobby, to be picked up and laid down like a game of solitaire. It is a grand passion.... ~ Emerson

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                            • #15
                              Thought I'd chime in here, too, agreeing that seat depth doesn't matter to me as long as the saddle is balanced. When I was saddle shopping recently, I gained a better appreciation for saddle fit and balance.

                              When I started looking, I thought I wanted a flatter seat. And I liked one a lot that didn't fit my horse quite right. I also tried a slew of deep seats that reinforced my desire for a flat seat: some had deep, cushy seats, that while comfortable, kept me too far from the horse and others made me feel like I was sitting in a hole and had to struggle to post or two-point. But then I found a Butet deep seat and aah!, the balance and fit was right on for my horse and I. The saddle has thigh blocks, too . I was afraid I would feel "locked in," but they are not noticeable to me, so I guess they can stay.

                              Still don't mind riding in the flat seat without blocks on other horses, though ...

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                              • #16
                                I prefer either very deep (like my old Amerigo Vega) or very flat. I don't particularly like the 1/2 deep, which is what I have now.

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                                • #17
                                  I prefer a flatter seat since for whatever reason I tend to want to tip my upper body forward, so I dont want anything back there to encourage that. With the flatter seat im able to sit more centered and upright. I have the Pessoa Eq model right now which has the flatter seat. Im also a big fan of the older bevals.

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                                  • #18
                                    I prefer a slightly flatter seat. I rode in my SIL's Antares the other day, and brused the heck out of myself hitting the pommel. Everything else seemed to fit me just fine, but that pommel stuck up there in the way.

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                                    • #19
                                      I have a Childeric which is a half deep seat and very well balanced, nice and comfy. I feel very secure in it, but not locked in. My other saddle is an Equipe Extreme, and it is a flatter saddle. At first I felt a bit insecure because it didn't cradle me, but then it was new and now it's a bit grippier. I'm making a point to ride in it more to get used to the flatter seat. It's really a different ride from the Childeric, but it's a nicely balanced saddle and I'm getting to like it more. I feel somehow freer over jumps in it, too.

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                                      • #20
                                        I usually prefer a flatter seat. One of the only Butet's I've ridden in had a deep seat and I felt like I kept hitting the pommel when I posted. But then again it may have just not been a good fit for me.

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