For years everyone, including qualified saddle fitters and Master Saddlers, only measured the wither area of the horse when fitting a saddle. In those days it wasn’t realised that if any area of the rest of the saddle didn’t fit properly, it would probably hurt the horse, so no-one measured it. Inevitably, this caused many horses to have back and other related problems.
Now that we know more and care more about our horses, good saddle fitters will always measure every area under the saddle, making sure that the underside of the saddle is a mirror image of the horse’s back. When we were designing The Perfect Fit Saddle Fitting Kit this is what we set out to achieve. We wanted it to clearly show the shape of the horse in every part of the saddle area so that it could easily be compared to the shape of the underside of the saddle. So, we take 3 measurements; the wither, the back and the cantle. If these measurements are the same as the underside of the saddle (subject to a few other checks) the saddle will fit the horse perfectly and the horse will be comfortable.
If the saddle isn’t a mirror image of the horse’s back, it will create pressure points which will dig into the horse and cause pain. The yellow dots below show the possible pressure points of badly fitted saddles.
Comfortable, well fitted saddles Uncomfortable, badly fitted saddles with painful pressure points
The kit gives you a quick and easy method of checking your saddle fits your horse. Also, the templates you make of your horse’s back can be a very useful guide to buying a saddle, particularly if it is bought from a distance. Both horses and saddles can change shape quite quickly, meaning the saddle will no longer fit properly. You can use the kit to check for these changes and it only takes minutes to do. Many good saddle fitters and saddlers are now encouraging their customers to use the kit to make these checks so that they can be called out before any harm is done to their horse. For more information go to www.perfectfitforsaddle.com or telephone Clare on 01928 787233