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Old 08-24-2010, 03:53 PM  
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best beginner saddle

Hi all! Haven't posted in a while b/c I am having too much fun with my horse I spend all my free time with him! Still learning alot, lost of people helping me out, still taking lessons, and took my 1st spill (and then my 2nd, 3rd, and 4th ....all pretty minor). I am shopping for the right saddle for me and my horse who is a 6yr old very sweet TWH. I started out with a used western saddle that's pretty comfy and fits both of us well...then I got adventurous and decided to try out this used English saddle that was given to me. I LOVED the English saddle--the freedom of movement, the lightness, closer contact, and it really improved my posting bc it's so much easier.
But then I took my 1st fall and then again when my horse slipped in mud and then i slid down his neck a few times when he would abruptly stop and eat grass. No real injuries but now I know I need to get something more secure until I have better balance. I used to cantor in the western now I am hesitant to do that--I have even purchased a flex rider vest b/c when he slipped and I fell off i bruised my ribs. So, now I bought this Aussie hoping it would secure me like a western but also allow me to post like an English. It secures me ok but is not like my English at all, in fact not as comfy as my western with all the straps and buckles right on the inside of my thighs. I can't post in the Aussie.
I have been reading alot about endurance saddles--does anyone have any advice on these or any other type of saddle I can try? I really love the English look of an Aussie--maybe I need to get one w/o the horn and a little better quality? Also, can I use an English bit and bridle with an Aussie?
Any advice is welcomed!
Thanks
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Old 08-24-2010, 04:11 PM  
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Can't offer any advice on the saddles... but the bridle... of course you can ride an English bridle with English bit in any discipline. Unless showing a particular discipline, it makes no difference. If you feel more secure riding 2 handed English do it, or in an English bridle do it.
Just so you know, it is work to learn the balance point in an English saddle. It is built on a different shaped and styled tree obviously. Don't get discouraged, do be careful and keep trying. If you are looking for a more secure seat... an all-purpose saddle might also give you that feeling. I've never ridden an endurance style myself... they appear to me to be more western styling on a narrower tree minus the horn. If it is the horn you are searching for for security/safety... ??
Possibly even a dressage style saddle might work. They are usually very deep seated(locked in feeling) but no idea how that would be to do trails/hills/ endurance. I think you might feel trapped and have to work very hard to get out of it off the back when galloping across terrain.
I ride a close contact style... you balance best in this style or you eat some dirt often. Flatter seat, narrow tree style gives the feel of the horses movement same as the others. You feel in all of them, it is just how much and how quickly depending upon the discipline.
Aussie saddle... have no idea, nor any advice. I've seen them but never had the opportunity to ride in one, yet!


Enjoy your new friend. Good luck in your saddle search.

Last edited by horselover4life : 08-24-2010 at 04:19 PM.
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Old 08-24-2010, 04:12 PM  
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I'd say you can use any bit and bridle that suits you and your horse and your respective levels of training, there is no law that they have to 'match' your saddle unless you are showing. I have never ridden in an Australian saddle, but I have recently purchased a cutting saddle (from a fellow HTer!) which is designed to be a 'close contact' western saddle. You can feel your horse a little more than in some other western saddles. It also keeps you in place a bit, since it's designed to be sat in while the horse is cutting hard right and left. So that could be something to look at, depending on your price range and other needs. It sounds like you're still working on finding your seat, hands and balance, as am I....it may help you to concentrate on focusing on leaning back slightly and keeping your heels down at all times, then he shouldn't be able to grab the reins from you to eat grass. When he does do this, you should put your legs on him and make him keep moving - if he gets away with it then life will become a never ending buffet for the both of you. Good luck!

ETA - if you are having trouble posting in your western saddle, just shorten up the stirrups and go ahead and post. I think most people who ride western post sometimes, there is also no law against posting unless you're showing!

Last edited by aes : 08-24-2010 at 04:15 PM.
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Old 08-24-2010, 05:16 PM  
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I'd recommend taking a look at the new wintec dressage saddles. The knee blocks help keep you more secure than a regular english saddle, but it still gives you that open feeling.
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Old 08-25-2010, 02:44 PM  
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I would also take a look at some of the Wintec saddles. Most of the new ones are made with super grippy equisuade on the seat to help keep you in the saddle. In my opinion, dressage saddles are the most comfortable because of their deep seat. It makes you feel more secure and Wintecs come with a flexibloc system that can be adjusted to meet your requirements. Also, wintecs come with an easy change gullet system that allows you to adjust your saddle to fit a varity of horses. If possible, I would recomend trying out a few different saddles and see which one you like best. If you are looking for a secure ride and like english, go with a dressage or all purpose for the deeper seats. Good luck!

here is a link to Wintec's website. It will tell you of all the things the saddle feature. You can also find a lot of these saddles for a cheaper used price on tacktrader.com!

http://http://www.wintec.net.au/prod...rpose2000.html
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Old 08-25-2010, 02:52 PM  
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If you are going to look into buying a Wintec, I recommend that you try one on your horse if possible before you buy one! There are so many out there for sale and trade as they fit a bit different.
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Old 08-25-2010, 03:20 PM  
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Aussies: most will put you in a "chair" position which is difficult to post. The exception (and the saddles I'm dreaming of) are the Bates/Wintec stock saddles. They're made by the same company, but the Bates are real leather & the Wintecs are synthetic. Several people on HT have these saddles and speak highly of them. The greatest part is that the new models have adjustable panels and gullets that should make it fit your horse well.

You can buy cheap Aussies & it's pretty hit and miss. The biggest benefit is that they will usually have you do a withers tracing, so it's the cheapest option that will be most likely fit your horse. I love mine-secure, comfy, and fits my horse. But I'll telll ya that post 30 miles from a chair seat is more difficult, but doable.

Endurance saddles are generally small & lightweight and very expensive. Again, Wintecs are awesome b/c they're adjustable to the horse & have the equisuede. They aren't as secure as Aussies, or even dressage saddles. Since they're smaller, some don't distribute weight as well, so you may have issues sore-ing your horse...may not, thouhg.


English: dressage saddles w/thigh blocks would probably be best. Again, the Wintec is a great idea w/the equisuede will help keep you in the seat.
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Old 08-25-2010, 03:28 PM  
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If you go with a dressage, try the Wintec Isabell or the Wintec Pro with contourblocs..... The Pro is the one I am buying!
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Old 08-26-2010, 08:30 AM  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by horsefeathers.08 View Post
I would also take a look at some of the Wintec saddles. Most of the new ones are made with super grippy equisuade on the seat to help keep you in the saddle. In my opinion, dressage saddles are the most comfortable because of their deep seat. It makes you feel more secure and Wintecs come with a flexibloc system that can be adjusted to meet your requirements. Also, wintecs come with an easy change gullet system that allows you to adjust your saddle to fit a varity of horses. If possible, I would recomend trying out a few different saddles and see which one you like best. If you are looking for a secure ride and like english, go with a dressage or all purpose for the deeper seats. Good luck!

here is a link to Wintec's website. It will tell you of all the things the saddle feature. You can also find a lot of these saddles for a cheaper used price on tacktrader.com!

http://http://www.wintec.net.au/prod...rpose2000.html

hi there! thanks to everyone for the advice, I think I may try out some of the Wintec dressage saddles--i like the idea of the grippy seat, the thigh blocks to keep me in position (and more secure) and esp. the deeper seat. Maybe I will get grippy breeches too
fyi the website sink doesn't open up for me for some reason..but I found a lot of these saddles on ebay. Maybe i can go for a childs size? i am a petite 5'2", 104#--what size would that be in English? My Aussie is a size 14#...someone said it best in here, the aussie makes me feel like I am sitting in a chair...who knows, maybe I should be sitting in a chair at this point lol but I really like the feel of an English saddle...would this dressage saddle be appropriate for long trail rides? are there ways to hook up a saddle bag?
thanks again! I see you are checking out eBay too--good luck I have had some great tack bargains on eBay ever since I got my boy
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Old 08-26-2010, 09:37 AM  
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Sounds like you're on the right track-it's awesome that you could try some saddles out and figure out what works for you!

Generally Aussie & English seats are the same measurements, while Westerns are 2" smaller (ie 15" Western = 17" Aussie or English).

Stowaway bags, made by Easycare are awesome-I just got cantle & pommel bags after years of leather & canvas "traditional" bags. I love them!

http://www.easycareinc.com/Other_Pro...way_Packs.aspx
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Old 08-26-2010, 11:54 AM  
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I'm not sure if the dressage saddles have places to hook up saddle bags or not, but my horse's previous owner uses her Isabell for long endurance rides and I think she took hers to a saddle shop and had them put a few extra rings on it for long trail rides. I actually prefer my dressage saddle over just about anything else for long trail rides primarily because the deep seat helps me stay in the saddle if my horse spooks! I LOVE my dressage saddle!
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Old 08-26-2010, 01:08 PM  
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ok horsefeathers you've really intrigued me now! I can't wait to try out some dressage saddles! but someone I really admire as a rider told me dressage might not be the best thing for trails tho that a dressage saddle is used for a very specific discipline but if you say you love it on the trails and feel more secure esp. when your horse spooks, i have to say it sounds like the right saddle for me! I think I'll try some all purpose and endurance saddles too...I need a high pommel and deep seat. I just found out today that my English saddle is a jump saddle, no wonder I keep sliding down my horse's neck LOL (only funny cuz I haven't really hurt myself )

thanks all, I LOVE hearing others opinions in here!
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Old 08-26-2010, 01:36 PM  
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My current fave is a Wintec all purpose - deep seat, some little hooks to hook stuff to. I too love the Easycare bags - and I also invested in a grab strap and the d ring extenders to allow me to hook a breast collar to and can also tie my front bag to those hooks. I also switched out the stirrups and got some plastic/composite wider track english sitrrups - gave me a wider base and makes me feel more secure if the horse jumps around.

My Wintec has the adjustable gullet - came with the normal width one and I bought just the wide gullet from Ebay and switched it out to fit my wider TWH. Really like this saddle over all for trail riding.
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Old 08-26-2010, 08:36 PM  
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Originally Posted by casnbug View Post
I'd recommend taking a look at the new wintec dressage saddles. The knee blocks help keep you more secure than a regular english saddle, but it still gives you that open feeling.

I tried a wintec dressage saddle today in a saddle shop, I loved it! it was a suede-like material with knee blocks and adjustable gullet....i think i'm gonna go for it....we'll see..so many saddles out there, it gets confusing and overwhelming for new riders :O
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Old 08-27-2010, 02:42 AM  
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There are many beginner saddle which are used to learn riding.
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Old 08-27-2010, 10:59 AM  
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There are many beginner saddle which are used to learn riding.

really? can you please tell me more about beginner saddles bc I have not been told this before...I would love to get one. Do you mean like the kids saddles with the bar thing on the pommel? I really just want something more secure than my jump saddle...don't care for the western saddles even though they secure me better....is there such a thing as a beginner English saddle with a deep seat, etc..? I am all ears (and eyes lol)!
thanks
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Old 08-27-2010, 11:37 AM  
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Which dressage saddle did you try in the tack shop? They have a few different options out right now, and they are all great!
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Old 08-27-2010, 08:17 PM  
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Which dressage saddle did you try in the tack shop? They have a few different options out right now, and they are all great!
a wintec pro dressage saddle size 17. it felt much more secure than my jump saddle and it had thigh rolls which I really liked. I liked the wintec all purpose saddle too. this shop did not have a wintec Isabell dressage I would have LOVED to try it out. the two saddles i tried had a suede like covering which I liked to help keep me from sliding. both very nice saddles...my Aussie is def. going back
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Old 08-27-2010, 08:20 PM  
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Originally Posted by casnbug View Post
I'd recommend taking a look at the new wintec dressage saddles. The knee blocks help keep you more secure than a regular english saddle, but it still gives you that open feeling.

I totally agree with you, I tried one on for size and i really liked it---the deeper seat and knee blocks are exactly what i need. It is pretty elegant looking too
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Old 08-28-2010, 02:41 PM  
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someone is offering a used Passier dressage saddle for $200--would this be a good saddle for a beginner like me? it is my size 16.5" (which equals to a 15" in western, right?) i don't know if i want to stick with getting a wintec dressage or all purpose since this I saw this addle for sale in my area. it is in great shape stirrups and leathers included...
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