Adjustable to Fit the Rider
ADJUSTABLE WESTERN SADDLE TO FIT A RIDER
Riders come in all shapes and sizes, so what works for a friend or trainer might not work for you. A good seat design should provide even pressure across the entire contact area. It should allow you to balance in the saddle so you can ride with quiet hands and seat allowing your horse to focus on the tasks you are asking of him. Our saddles can be fine-tuned to fit the rider perfectly for the ultimate in balance, alignment and comfort.
Consider the importance of alignment:
Place your feet apart on the ground as if you were posting the trot, and bend and straighten your knees several times. Then sit on a medium-height stool, feet apart but not aligned under your hips. From this position, try “posting.” Which is more comfortable? Most saddles do not allow the rider to adjust to achieve proper alignment. Alignment is essential for avoiding aches and pains and for your horse’s comfort. It’s similar to sitting at the trot, with less movement from the rider to moving with the horse.
The seat size should allow you to sit in the middle of the seat with approximately two fingers’ width of space between the swell and your thigh. The back of your seat to the cantle should be approximately 4”. A larger seat will be required if you ride with your feet out in front of you than if you ride under you. The larger seat size prevents you from the horse’s center of gravity.
Tush-Cush Seat Shims
Our saddle seat leather lifts to expose the ground seat shim under your saddle seat. The width of the saddle twist is critical to hip joint comfort. With our adjustable seat shimming system, you can make the seat twist narrower with a thicker shim or you can make it wider but closer to your horse with a thinner shim. A thin shim under the top of your thigh can make an incredible difference in the angle and how your hips feel when sitting in the saddle seat. Finding a balance that’s right for you takes some trial and error.
The ground seat’s shape can be adjusted to fit your body and riding preferences. Moving the pad forward creates a deeper pocket while moving it back removes it and tips your pelvis forward. Finding a neutral pelvis position is critical as you stack your body over your pelvis by aligning your heel, hip, and shoulder. Moving Shims under your seat allows you to find a neutral pelvis position, neither tilted forward nor back.
Stirrup Leathers / Fenders
The stirrup is the foundation of your seat.
You should also be able to stand in your stirrups and sit again without moving your lower legs or worry about falling forward onto your horse’s neck. Our fenders are attached to the tree with hook and loop fabric. This allows the rider to move their stirrups forward or backward to position their legs and feet under them for proper alignment at the shoulder, hip, and back of the heel. If the stirrups are too far back, the rider will tip forward. If the stirrups are too far ahead, the rider will tip back into a chair position, which often leads to bracing and sitting more on the cantle, putting more pressure on the rear of the saddle. The horse will compensate for the out-of-position rider by changing its way of going. The seat shims and adjustable stirrups align your body and reduce stress on your joints and muscles.
Choose a small seat size.
A smaller seat keeps us closer to the horse’s center of gravity. The horse’s centre of gravity is the point around which it rotates as it moves; it is located below the wither and moves back as the horse collects up. A saddle bronc rider or a jockey will ride over the wither because that is the spot with the least movement. The closer you are to the horse’s centre of gravity, the less movement you have to compensate for; the horse revolves around your position instead of having to move to compensate for them.
Consider wider stirrups
When you’re riding all day, you want wide and flat stirrups to provide maximum support over the ball of your foot. Consider purchasing trail stirrups with extra-wide treads. Look for shock-absorbing pads, which can improve foot and joint comfort.
Consider Twisted Stirrups
If you ride a Western saddle and have sore ankles and knees, you may be fighting to keep your feet pointing forward in stirrups that naturally lay parallel to your horse’s side. Saddlemakers will often put a twist in the bottom of the fender. Some riders soak the fenders in water, twist them into the desired position, and then put a broomstick through the stirrups to hold the fenders in place until they dry. Easy Fit saddles have a non-bulky, lightweight method of turning the stirrups so you can easily find and slide your foot into the stirrups.
Consider Angled Stirrups
Have you ever had your little toe sleep on a long trail ride? The cant (angle of your foot) is usually a little toe prominent, and the twist of the fender will angle the stirrup up on the outside, compounding the issue. Kneel on a stool with your feet back and have someone take a gander at your boots from above; is the little toe prominent? My wife is the opposite, so it’s essential to look. Angled stirrups can parallel your foot with the ground, greatly improving balance, control, and riding comfort.
Custom Western Saddles
You’ll Love How We Build Saddles
At Easy Fit, we know a lot about custom western saddles. We’re known for top-quality, lightweight western saddles for women and men. And for our great fit for both horse and rider.
That’s why we take time to measure your horse and make a saddle tree that fits. Next, we make the saddle adjustable so that it continues to fit both of you. Then you make it your own with a selection of hundreds of options.
More than just another
Our saddles are COMPLETELY CUSTOMIZABLE, so you can achieve that One-Of-A-Kind look you desire. If you’ve browsed our saddle gallery and found a saddle you like but doesn’t have the options you want, book a call.
Or fill out our no-obligation form for a quote on your next saddle.