If I Buy the Saddle that Champions Ride In, Will I Be a Champion Too?

I have to laugh… just a little.

Internationally famous horse-rider team nails a competition, it is posted on You Tube, and everyone rushes to buy the saddle that sponsors the rider.  Here’s the thing… EVERY saddle company sponsors riders for exactly this response but are you really getting what the sponsored rider has?  Yes, it may say it is the same model and it may even be pretty close to the saddle in that You Tube ride.  Consider however that the sponsored rider receives a level of attention to the existing saddle that mere mortals cannot expect… up to, and including trading out that saddle each time the horse changes.  It may be a change of size and it may be a change of model.  Whatever happens though, that rider is not going to spend a dime.

Also, have you considered that your horse is not the same shape as the Champ? This is a huge, and often ignored consideration.  Many saddle companies make saddles for a narrow range of horse body types.  I cannot think of many companies however who will say that your horse will not fit well with one of their saddles.

No one can guarantee that your horse will not change and that you will be able to use any saddle forever but there are a few things that you should consider when you purchase a saddle.  Is the saddle truly compatible with my horse?  If it is an English saddle, is it wool flocked?  Can the tree be widened or changed out if only the width needs to be altered?

I have probably said it before… If your horse changes within a given range, a wool saddle is easier and less expensive to change.  Foam saddles fit for as long as your horse is the same.  What if your horse muscles up a little?  That is usually our training goal but will your new foam paneled saddle accommodate that change?  Less likely than if it was wool flocked.

The points to walkaway from this post with are: know (or ask an independent saddle fitter) what shape tree your horse needs and which companies offer that tree, and consider that wool flocking will probably take you further than foam.