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Saddle for horseless rider.

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  • Saddle for horseless rider.

    My boyfriend is starting to ride english and it is clear that he needs his own saddle (he is taller than me and mine is just a tad too small for him). At present he also lives 4 hours away from me so if he's taking lessons in his home town, he can't be borrowing mine! He will likely ride several different horses before he might end up with his own horse. So any recommendations for someone like him? I imagine he would be best off with his own saddle for lessons as he is going to be bigger (he's 6 or so and about 185) than your typical female lesson rider. I am thinking he would probably be riding TB's and/or warm bloods but you just never know. Should he definitely get something with an interchangeable gullet? Thanks for any advice.

    P.S. I am delighted to have a problem like this : )

  • #2
    I don't have a suggestion but I agree - it's a nice problem to have!


    • #3
      Many of the tall men I foxhunt with like Stubben Roxanes.

      I also hunt in one (although much smaller than theirs'!). My 32cm tree fits my WIDE Arab and many other horses I put it on. The only thing it isn't great on is sharkfin withers. Its a bit wide for some horses, but a sheepskin halfpad fixes that issue for most horses. If I was getting one to fit the majority of horses, I would go for a 31cm tree. I can get by with the 31cms on my Arab and it would be fine for a lesson or two a week, but he is happier with the 32cms when he's wearing it for a while (foxhunting and endurance).

      As for the adjustable gullets, I have a Wintec for my TB mare with the adjustable gullet. It was given to me by a friend for her because she's old, her back changes a lot and is used as a lesson horse. I have another Stubben that fits her (Wotan, its geared toward polo players who typically ride TBs) as well, but I didn't want the lesson kids trashing it. The gullet *is* changeable. However, it takes a minute to do so. Its not really something I'd want to mess around with before a lesson unless I had an hour plus to kill beforehand.


      • #4
        Originally posted by candysgirl View Post
        Many of the tall men I foxhunt with like Stubben Roxanes.
        Almost every man I know who rides English rides in a Stubben of some sort. Mainly Siegfrieds.

        The changeable gullet saddles are not really meant to be changed frequently, such as for a weekly lesson. As mentioned above, they take some time to change, and I've heard it isn't always easy to do either.


        • Original Poster

          Thanks so much for the replies. I'm not thinking he would be needing to change the gullet that much. But could be a nice feature to have if you might be riding a variety of horses.


          • #6
            When I was riding school horses, I always had a saddle with a wide tree. You can stick a wither pad on a TB and have it fit well enough for a 60 minute ride, but you can't do anything about a too narrow saddle. Can't really help with a specific brand though, sorry.


            • #7
              Bates or Pessoa?? Obviously it's best if he can sit in a few. You'll have fun riding together!
              (My fiancé came on a trail ride with us. We got lost in the woods for 3 hours - not something I recommend for the guys who are not yet hooked! The saddle didn't fit him or the horse. He was so tired and sore he just kinda fell off instead of dismounting at the end!! He hasn't been on since!)
              Born under a rock and owned by beasts!


              • #8
                I'd also recommend a Stubben of some sort or another. They seem to fit a very wide variety of horses, provide a good correct position, and (heaven forbid) if he changes his mind later on, they seem to retain their value well.

                IMHO many of the adjustable tree saddles never fit anything quite right. A good wool flocked saddle can be fitted/adjusted quite a bit too.
                The rebel in the grey shirt


                • #9
                  I'd recommend synthetic saddle with changable gullet - best solution for a kid, because it's light weight and it's easier to handle than a leather saddle. And suitable for every horse with some gullet. And of course cheaper than a leather saddle...

                  For example:


                  • #10
                    My Bates gullet is easy to change, not that I'd want to change it on a regular basis either lol, but it does only take a few minutes to do.

                    That saddle fits decently on A LOT of horses- everything from large ponies to TBs to WBs to QH types.

                    So, not sure that it would work for him (I am female but am 5'10") but I've had it almost 10yrs and I do like it for the ability to fit on a variety of horses.


                    • Original Poster

                      Thanks all for so many responses! Jump4me, which Bates do you have? It also seems that the Stubben Siegfried and Roxannes come in All Purpose or Jumping models. At this point, boyfriend is just doing flat work and lots of trails but I think he will eventually want to learn to jump. I am assuming he would probably be best of in a jumping saddle? Any opinions on that? My first saddle was a stubben wotan and I used if for everything including jumping (generally nothing over 3')- I had to sell it because I outgrew it (got saddle as a teen and my legs got too long). It was a comfortable saddle and very well made (purchased used in the late 70's- so don't know how that would compare to the newer models). I currently do everything including trails in a jumping saddle and it seems to work OK for me. Anyway I'd welcome any thoughts on the AP vs Jumping saddle as well.


                      • #12
                        A Stubben all-purpose would be fine for jumping. That's what I use. By the way, tomorrow is Stubben's Black Monday sale if you're interested in a new Stubben. In credible bargains will be had, so I understand.

                        I heard a neigh. Oh, such a brisk and melodious neigh as that was! My very heart leaped with delight at the sound. --Nathaniel Hawthorne


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Dewey View Post
                          A Stubben all-purpose would be fine for jumping. That's what I use. By the way, tomorrow is Stubben's Black Monday sale if you're interested in a new Stubben. In credible bargains will be had, so I understand.

                          When I was riding lesson horses, I bought a Stubben Scandica VSD, and it worked really well. I got a medium size tree (29 I think) and it fit lots of horses, and was really comfortable. Great for flat work and totally acceptable for low jumps.

                          ETA: I checked my records and the tree is a 31.
                          Last edited by TarheelJD; Nov. 19, 2012, 03:05 PM. Reason: Correct tree size
                          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


                          • #14
                            IMHO.... Fit the guy first with an interchangeable gullet saddle. Put the Med Wide gullet in and go ride!! Make sure that who he is taking his lessons from knows that the gullet is slightly wider than an M and some padding might be in order on occasion. (Although if a saddle is really right on the horse's withers that is a big time NO )
                            There are Pessoa GenX models now have flaps for a tall person. Reasonably priced should he be resistant to "the Bug!! " and gives up


                            • Original Poster

                              Thanks again everyone. Boyfriend is going to start taking regular lessons in his home town with someone who appears to be a reputable and knowledgeable trainer! Yay, I'm very excited about that. I am sure the trainers input will be very helpful. Looks like he may be getting a horse too- the one he has been riding on trail rides with me- my friends TB, who in his glory days, used to show at Pebble Beach. However, the horse lives down here with my horse so he won't be taking lessons on it yet. Down the road we are planning to live in the same town at which point both horses will relocate. The horse he will be getting needs a medium tree- but not sure what the lesson horse(s) will need. At any rate when we are going to be doing some saddle shopping just to see what seems to work for him. On a side note, my friends horse Stoli is in love with my horse Angel- isn't that cute?


                              • #16
                                Go for the Stubben, with a MW tree, like a 31. A couple of men that I know that foxhunt also ride in Pessoas. Both brands are readily available for reasonable prices new and used.