ridecamp@endurance.net: [endurance] re: endurance saddles

[endurance] re: endurance saddles

Sullys Maze (Sully@Forsythe.Stanford.EDU)
Mon, 11 Sep 95 16:38:20 PDT

[31941] MON 09/11/95 12:22 FROM hickst@puzzler.nichols.com "Tina Hicks": Re:
[endurance] Saddles; 36 LINES

Tina Hick's writes:
At 8:13 AM 9/11/95, Samm C Bartee wrote:
I started using a saddle made by
>Marilyn Horstmyer at Desoto Custom Saddlery, and the difference was amazing!!
>She custom fits the horse, and the rider.

I think the idea behind a custom fit saddle is great but what happens when
you change horses?? or your body weight fluctuates a lot??

Tina Hicks
Andy -the clueless spotted dog with lipstick on his head
7 cats, one horse and one non-dog/non-horse husband
Huntsville, AL

I wonder this also. And, the horse's back will change shape over
the course of conditioning, and also over his life span. What then?

At this point, I am really sceptical of solid tree saddles at all.
I just don't see how they can fit consistently with pinching at
all , when, if you watch a horse at the different gaits, or
even with head raised or lowered, the back changes shape.

I am very interested in saddle design, and talked to all the
saddle vendors at the AERC convention at length, and just about
everyone I run across that rides endurance.

I am still pretty darn happy with the Sport SAddle. Becasue it
is flexible, I use it on all my horses, including the Welsh pony who
is very sway-backed. I always check their backs, and have never
had one show up with a sore back or rubs of any kind. There have
been remarks here before from folks who are not happy with the
stirrup leathers or the configuration of the rigging, but do not
remember any complaints about sore backs.

I also talked to Genie Stewart Spears at the AERC convention, again
about this saddle which she promotes. Her comments were that in
the cases she had heard of there some horses seemed to be tender
across under the cantle area after long rides where the riders were
sitting for extended periods, she said this was completely resolved
by using a skito pad. She also said it was very important that
the foam inserts in the pad be larger than the bottom of the saddle
so not as to reduce weigth bearing area.

Truman had mentioned last spring that Maggie Price was considering
marketing her own saddle based on the Sport Saddle (but with
improvements). Truman, have you heard anything else about that?

The two biggest changes I noticed when I switched to this saddle was
that my horses moved out much better, and went downhill freeer, and
that I was no longer sore after long rides. In the group of peopl;e
I know with this saddle, just about all have switched to neoprene
girths and Flex Ride stirrups. Also, unlike the Wintec and Stubbens
we were using prior to the Sport SAddle, the SS does not migrate
foreward, even on the downhills or slide back. I find no need to
use a crupper, tight breastcollar or even cinch tight. And, if
I may speak for my friend Tammy, she is so well balanced in this
saddle she routinely rides with pleanty of air between the cinch and
the horse and never seems toave any problems with slipping.

One can only hope that endurance saddle makers keep expending their
knowledge and inproving saddle fit and trees. Certainly more and
more seem to be moving to some sort of flexible or hinged tree.

I have also found with the combination of the skito pad, and the
neoprene in the saddle, there is nothing quite so comfortable, and
it is wonderful to feel so close to the horse you can feel them
breathe and bend. I will also state,for the sake of this "survey"
that I am a featherweight rider.

I am also interested n other SS comments. Nick W, how does the
new Zes compare to it?