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Saddle Fitting Question [Pictures Included]

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  • Saddle Fitting Question [Pictures Included]

    So after a very LONG & agonizing recovery time after one of my working students used a lesson saddle on my jumper and tore his withers up, I'm now totally paranoid about my saddle fit.

    I've had friends that do some saddle fitting (not professionally) look at it, & my (very limited) knowledge all say my personal saddle fits him OK (not great). I've added a thinline with it to try to correct some of the issues but I'm just not happy. I feel like it's affecting his movement (he's always been one to want to go on a shorter stride but it seems to be exaggerated since the "incident"). He's super athletic and shouldn't have any issue opening up his step, so I really feel like its a saddle fit issue... or atleast its not helping.

    He has a huge shoulder & high withers, he also lost a lot of his topline after the saddle issue as he was out of work for 2 months.

    I have a medium tree Antares that I bought used. The horse it was built for has a VERY similar build to my guy, just a bit wider through the back (WB but had a huge shoulder & high wither).

    http://s109.photobucket.com/user/bur...20Saddle%20Fit

    I tried to take every angle that might be needed. Sorry for the dark saddle pix, hopefully their still of use.
    EdgeBrook

  • #2
    Unfortunately, photos with a sheepskin pad are basically useless for seeing how the saddle itself fits. Can you take photos without it?
    Originally posted by PeanutButterPony
    you can shackle your pony to a lawn chair at the show...so long as its in a conservative color.

    Comment

    • Original Poster

      #3
      I took it with & without. Sorry they didn't get moved over when I made the album.

      http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...t/null-8-1.jpg
      http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...t/null-7-1.jpg
      http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...t/null-6-1.jpg
      http://i109.photobucket.com/albums/n...t/null-5-1.jpg
      EdgeBrook

      Comment


      • #4
        It's too narrow and the pad is making it much worse.

        Comment


        • #5
          I don't like the way it fits either. But here is a great video for reference...

          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ffsz53UwLF0
          Celtic Charisma (R.I.P) ~ http://flickr.com/photos/rockandracehorses/2387275281
          Proud owner of "The Intoxicated Moose!"
          "Hope is not an executable plan" ~ My Mom
          I love my Dublin-ator

          Comment

          • Original Poster

            #6
            Narrow through the shoulder? thats where I saw the issue.
            EdgeBrook

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Showjumper28 View Post
              I don't like the way it fits either. But here is a great video for reference...

              http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ffsz53UwLF0
              Excellent video!

              Comment


              • #8
                It looks to narrow to me also, but he's got quite the wither on him so he may need something wider with wither gussets or a cut back pommel.

                I have found this book to be more than helpful and enlightening...

                http://www.amazon.com/Horses-Pain-Fr.../dp/1570762929
                Boyle Heights Kid 1998 16.1h OTTB Dark Bay Gelding
                Tinner's Way x Sculpture by Hail to Reason
                "Once you go off track, you never go back!"

                Comment


                • #9
                  Wow, he has a sharp and *long* set of withers on him, eh?

                  Those white hairs on 'em that you can see from one of the straight behind shots: What saddle produced those? And those are on the "back half" of the withers? Some saddle's gullet was sliding up into his withers?

                  I notice that the panels on this saddle don't "wrap around" his back very well. I see that in the naked 3/4 shots, and especially in the naked from behind shot. Back there, see how the panels seem to curve up into the gullet before his back does?

                  From there: If you palpate his back, where does he seem sore? After all, the horse's opinion is the best arbiter of saddle fit. That might also tell you where in his back he's sore enough that he doesn't want to move.

                  Lemme know and I'll see if I can help you figure it out.

                  PS: Other saddles you have tried and how they looked/how he went?
                  The armchair saddler
                  Politically Pro-Cat

                  Comment

                  • Original Poster

                    #10
                    He's not sore (although he was chiroed about 3 weeks ago), just tight through the shoulder under saddle, won't open his trot or canter stride up. One of my lesson saddles (dover circuit medium tree) and a working student caused his pressure scars.

                    The withers are definitely monsters (I'm not sure if I can have babies after riding him bareback while he was recuperating ), I am getting a sinking suspicion nothing "off the rack" will fit him with those + his shoulder.
                    EdgeBrook

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Pessoa AMS Alto Panel, possibly with a MW gullet installed.

                      My trainer has a horse with withers like that, compounded by a sway back. She never thought she would find an "off the rack" fit for him, but the Pessoa worked. It gave clearance to the wither while allowing the tree to be wide enough not to interfere with his shoulder.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I second trying to find something cutback. That with a medium/wide gullet might work. I'm trying to think of brands... As mvp asked: what have you already tried that hasn't worked? Besides the Dover?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I have a passer precision that is cutback.
                          Celtic Charisma (R.I.P) ~ http://flickr.com/photos/rockandracehorses/2387275281
                          Proud owner of "The Intoxicated Moose!"
                          "Hope is not an executable plan" ~ My Mom
                          I love my Dublin-ator

                          Comment

                          • Original Poster

                            #14
                            I had an older pessoa before I bought my antares and his old owner rode him in an old old pessoa. I've been interested in their new gullet system... anyone have any experience with it?
                            EdgeBrook

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              The saddle in your pics is too narrow, and the panels are not making good contact (which reduces the weight-bearing area and increases pressure where the panels *do* make contact.

                              With his build, you might want to check out Prestige saddles. They're built with high clearance, a wide (but not crazy-wide) channel and have upswept panels. The Roma Jump in particular is a great saddle for the price ($2100)... leather breaks in quickly, seat and kneepads are comfy, long and forward flap options (with front and rear blocks), machine-adjustable tree and wool-flocked.
                              Patience pays.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by EdgeBrook View Post
                                I had an older pessoa before I bought my antares and his old owner rode him in an old old pessoa. I've been interested in their new gullet system... anyone have any experience with it?
                                Like all gullet systems, the Pessoa just allows you to change the width at the front. You still have to make sure the tree/panel shape is appropriate. The option for the ALTO panels, though, is something that might work for your guy... designed for the horse with high withers/relatively low back. Built up so you get clearance, but also are able to sit level. More depth to seat and bigger blocks than the older Pessoa A/O. $2345 and about 3-4 weeks to build if you can't find one in stock.
                                Patience pays.

                                Comment

                                • Original Poster

                                  #17
                                  Does the Roma ride anything like the Nona Garsons? One of my clients had one and I couldn't get over how narrow the twist was. Never seemed to fit any horse or rider right.
                                  EdgeBrook

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by EdgeBrook View Post
                                    Does the Roma ride anything like the Nona Garsons? One of my clients had one and I couldn't get over how narrow the twist was. Never seemed to fit any horse or rider right.
                                    No... *totally* different saddle. The Nona has always been too narrow for my taste, too. On the Roma, both twist and seat are comfortably wider, and the seat is squishy in a very nice way. Blocks are bigger. And instead of the trademark white rawhide on cantle, there is now a very subtle piping at the rear of the cantle.
                                    Patience pays.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Roma Jump for the Horse...

                                      Compared to the Nona... the Roma Jump has more clearance height and width in the channel, as well as wider panels.
                                      Patience pays.

                                      Comment

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