Do horse saddles come in different sizes?
Indeed, they do! Perhaps obvious to those who have been in the saddle for a long time, but it's a perfectly reasonable question for someone newer to equestrian pursuits.
Whether your mount is a small Shetland pony or a mighty Shire horse, there will be a saddle that is the right size for you. Equally important though, is that the saddle is the correct size for your horse too.
Horse saddle sizes
Horse saddles come in a variety of sizes to fit both the horse and rider. It is vital to take the time to find a saddle that is the correct size, as an ill-fitting saddle can be uncomfortable for both parties and can cause problems. If you do long-distance riding, you will know what a difference a comfortable saddle can make. It ensures that when you jump off your horse, that you can walk normally! Not all bandy-legged, looking like someone from a John Wayne movie, or worse, that you have had a little accident!
If your saddle is too small, your buttocks will hit the cantle (back of saddle), or your crotch will hit the pommel (front). Not good! If the saddle is too big, you'll feel like you are sliding around with little control. And let's face it we need as much control as possible sitting up there!
So, what should you consider when choosing your saddle size? For your horse, you will need to consider weight, height, build and wither size. For yourself, you will need to consider your height, weight, and leg length. If you are taller and or heavier than average, you will need a larger saddle. If you are petite, you may need a smaller saddle. You will also need to consider what type of riding you will be doing, as this can affect the size of saddle you need.
Once you have considered all the above, you can start looking at different saddles to find one that is the right size.
How to find a saddle that fits
- Look at saddle size charts that are available online or from saddle manufacturers
- Measure both the horse and you to get accurate measurements
- Ask your equestrian tack retailer for advice
- Ask a professional saddle fitter to help you. Many of them hold a stock of saddles that may be suitable
Also, if you belong to a yard with several horse owners, why not ask your fellow riders for advice? You can bet that someone will have been down this road before and will be able to offer you advice. Perhaps you could even try out some of the other horse owners’ saddles to give you a better idea of what you like. Plus, you never know, someone there might be looking to change their saddle and theirs could be a good second-hand option for you.
Once you have a clearer idea of what you are looking for, it's time to go saddle shopping! Remember, as discussed in earlier blogs - it pays to buy the best you can afford to ensure comfort for you and your four-legged friend.
Here at Blackjack Horse Saddles, we have a vast selection of saddles for you to choose from. If you need advice, please contact us - we are here to help you find that ideal saddle to make those hours in the saddle even more fun! Check them out here