ridecamp@endurance.net: Re: Adjustable Trees and the Great Saddle Hunt

Re: Adjustable Trees and the Great Saddle Hunt

Sullys Maze (Sully@Forsythe.Stanford.EDU)
Sun, 13 Apr 97 10:02:40 PDT

REPLY TO 04/12/97 22:46 FROM ridecamp@endurance.net: Adjustable Trees and the
Great Saddle Hunt

Ann writes:

Tried a friend's sport saddle (and have tried a cheaper version-Circle Y?)
Felt very similar to one another on short rides. I must be too acclimated
to English saddles: don't like the dinky little excuse for a flap, and it
catches on the top of my boots; don't like the feeling of lower leg hanging
in space off the padded edge of the saddle-seem to have to move my leg way
in and therefore my kneee waaay out to give aids.Was hoping I'd love it at
first ride though I've read everyone's posts on having to get used to these
saddles. Why don't they make them like English or Aussie saddles?

Ann, you can't ride this saddle english style at all! They can't
make them like English saddles for an abvious reason. This saddle
has a seat that will have the configuration of whatever the shape of
your horses back is. That generally is wider than the seat of any
saddle made. English saddles (and Western ones too), have narrow
seats up on top of the tree. In other words, they are raising you
farther and farther up off the horses back in order to get a narrow
seat, and in the case of the english saddle, to allow you to clamp
your legs against the horse! You cannot do this in the sport
saddle. Your legs will be at a much wider angle, and unless you
have very short legs, hanging way off the horse! It becomes
impossible for someone like me with long legs to ride with any kind
of constant leg contact. So I compensate and ride with seat cues,
voice comments and weight shifts. Works fine on the trail. The
little flap does not bother me, but I don;t ride in boots, I ride in
running shoes.

I came from riding an ancient all purpose Barnsby, and spend some
time with a Stubben and Wintec. I did love those knee rolls, and
had a grip to envy! After taking several rides to get used to the
Sport Saddle, I forgot all about the knee rolls, and appreciated now
natural it felt. However, I am always interested in any problems
folks are having with them (very minimal), and it still allows me to
ride 3 or 4 days in a row with no back soreness. I have been riding
in this saddle for about 3 years, on a variety of different shaped

To get also over to Eileens comments about dry spots and white
hairs, it's hard to look for white hairs on grey horses <G>, but I
always look at the sweat and hair pattern after the rides, and have
never seen any ruffled hair, dry spots, or evidence of pressure.

Someday if anyone ever does manage to create a sport saddle in an
English style, I would be interested to see it. I certainly don't
think that saddle design has at all caught up with the technology
out there!


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