The Importance Of Proper Western Saddle Fit

About Me
Let's Head to the Pet Store

Is there any place more wondrous than the pet store? You get the opportunity to shop for your new furry friend, whether it's a mouse, a hamster, a rabbit, or guinea pig. You also get to shop for supplies that your pet needs — cages, collars, water bottles, brushes, and more. If you love pets, you could probably spend hours wandering through the pet store, just looking at the various animals and associated supplies. We bet you'll also love reading about pet stores, which you can do right here on this blog. Learn more about pets and pet stores, and feed your passion.


The Importance Of Proper Western Saddle Fit

13 October 2021
 Categories: , Blog

Getting a western saddle that doesn't fit not only affects you but also your horse. A poorly fitted saddle could bring out undesired behavior problems due to the pain and discomfort. If you are in the market for a new western saddle, here are some ways to ensure you have a proper fit.

Consider Your Activity

Western saddles have different designs for better movement and comfort during certain activities. For example, a ranch saddle has a comfortable design for long hours in the saddle. A trail saddle is lightweight and often has extra seat padding. Roping saddles tend to be heavier, with a strong tree and horn. Having the right saddle helps you and your horse stay comfortable and perform well.

Determine the Tree Size

Saddle trees range from narrow to extra-wide. You want a tree that gives a couple of inches clearance from the withers but sits well on the back. If the clearance is too high or low, then the tree is not the right size. Most riding horses tend to take a medium tree, while draft horses take a wide or extra wide fit. However, you can have a typical-looking horse that has a wide back. So, measure your horse's fit carefully.

Check Fit

Check the fit without any padding. The saddle should fit level across your horse's back. It should also not extend past the rib cage. You may need to try shims or change positions to see where the saddle fits best. If the saddle seems too high, then you may need a wider tree. If it seems low, then you may need to go narrower.

Think About Padding

Don't rely on padding to cure all saddle fit problems, but it can help with unusual issues. For example, swayback horses often need extra padding in some areas. Straight backs may require a tree with a mule bar or pads with shims. The goal is to have the saddle fit properly while keeping you stable on your horse's back.

While all of the above can get someone started on choosing a saddle, some people may need more advanced help. For example, if you are overweight or your horse is muscular, you may need a saddle to accommodate those issues. In these cases, have an experienced person help you with measurements.

A saddle is a huge investment, so you want the right fit. You want you and your horse to be comfortable. You also want the saddle to perform well and be durable. If you have questions about fit and size, ask your local western tack shop for more information.