ridecamp@endurance.net: [endurance] Saddle Fit

[endurance] Saddle Fit

Joyce Kellenberger (joyce@homer.ca.boeing.com)
Mon, 5 Aug 96 17:46:13 PDT

Saddle fit saga continues . . .

I have received some good info with regard to the proper fit of my
orthoflex. I was reminded by more than one subscriber than the
OF needs to have a snug girth. OK, I can live with that, and I'm
more than willing to give it a try; however, what about the length
of the panels pushing into my horse's shoulder. I tried an experi-
ment the last time I rode with my OF. Where the panels sit in
front I pushed with some pressure and my horse moved vigorously
away as if she was really sore at that point. Now if I were to
snug up my girth even more, wouldn't those panels dig even further
into the shoulder region? Technically this area is called the
infraspinatus. My horse had just recently had massage therapy and
no sensitivity showed up in that region at all. Also, when I
removed the saddle after a 3 1/2 hour ride, her back was extremely
dipped. After a few minutes she relaxed and brought it back up to
what is normal for her.

One more thing I remember about Len Brown's literature was a photo
of Len mounting a horse with an OF saddle with no girth. This was
to indicate the fit and balance of the saddle. I always thought a
not-so-snug girth would be good or at least OK because of that

I am convinced that this particular saddle does not fit my horse.
I let my horse tell me that. Everything I saw with the OF I have not
seen with the Wintec all-purpose I normally use for her. And at this
point the Wintec is more comfortable for me as well. Less is better
for me. However, I'm still going to try setting the saddle further
back and tightening the girth to see what happens. I bought this
saddle over a year ago and never had the opportunity to ride it much
as I turned it over to my riding partner to use on my other horse.
Well after a year of using this saddle we have those embarrassing
white hair patches on either side of the withers now on that horse
as well as the wavy hair that only recently turned up. I don't know
what to think anymore. Anyone want to buy an Express Lite?