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, in my opinion, provides even pressure across the entire contact area. Female sit bones are generally wider than male sit bones, with more or less booty, more or less natural lower spine curvature, and so on. We are all unique. Rider fit is critical for your horse; a saddle that does not fit properly will affect your balance, causing the horse to compensate. Our saddles can be fine-tuned to fit the rider perfectly. The rider can use their legs independently of their pelvis when they have a neutral pelvis. A saddle seat with a narrow twist allows your calves to make better contact with your horse.
Choose a small seat size
A smaller seat keeps us closer to the horse’s center of gravity. The centre of gravity of the horse is the point around which the horse rotates as it moves; it is located somewhere 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.
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 seat adjustable replaceable seat shimming system, you can make the seat twist narrow with a thicker shim or wider but closer to your horse with a thinner shim. Finding a balance that’s right for you takes some trial and error. 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.
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. 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.
Consider the significance 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 2 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.
The stirrup is the foundation of
You should also be able to stand in your stirrups and sit again without moving your lower legs or fear falling forward onto your horse’s neck. Our stirrup leathers 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.
Consider wider stirrups
When you’re riding all day, you want stirrups that are wide and flat 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 trying 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 just the opposite, so it’s important to have a look. Angled stirrups can make your foot parallel with the ground, which greatly improves balance, control, and riding comfort.