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TheSaddle takes the struggle out of sitting in a balanced or shoulder-hip-heel position because the saddle is adjusted so that the lowest part of the saddle and the centre of the seat coincide no matter how the horse is shaped. A saddle with its lowest part in the middle of the seat rolls the top of the rider’s pelvis forward, putting a small natural forward curve in the small of the back which works up the spine to place the shoulders naturally above the hips.
All that remains to be done to complete the rider's balance is to have the heels placed below the hips.
Thesaddle has an adjustable stirrup bar, enabling any rider to place the bar so the stirrup leather hangs vertically down to the ball of the foot at the correct distance from the centre of the seat to place the heel under the hip. There is now no need for those riders with smaller feet (most riders) to reach for the stirrup with the foot and pull it back to place the leg correctly. Say goodbye to the swinging leg at the rising trot!
Because the basic position is now natural and physically stress free the rider becomes less tired, finding it easier to learn the more demanding movements of riding or to cover distances without feeling fatigued. Those riders who often have back pain through struggling to sit correctly may discover that this is now gone! It is also easier to learn a rising trot that greatly reduces the height of the rise and takes the strain off the knees enabling lighter riding with a longer leg.
Most of the advantages listed below are new to saddles and saddle fitting. What could not be done in the past theSaddles can do now!
When a horse is worked in thesaddle its wither and back muscles improve.
Horses with hollow withers will improve so much that the saddle rises at the front rather than, as is usually expected, sinks closer to the top of the wither sometimes making it necessary to reflock or get a narrower saddle. Also because thepanels do not press into the wither during riding it is possible to have a much smaller gap between the underside of the pommel and the wither making it easier to optimise saddle balance especially on high withered horses.
The large flat panels, which distribute the weight and riding forces, flex to follow the bend of the horse.
The lateral bend of the horse, for turns and circles, comes mainly from flexibility in the spine directly underneath the saddle. saddles optimise this bend as thepanels can follow this curve especially on the inside of the bend. It is often possible to ask a horse to circle, with a correct bend, close to or within its own length at the walk when using the Saddle.
The flexibility of adjustment is especially useful with young horses.
As the young horse is backed and worked, it continues to grow and develop. It is extremely important at this time to make sure that it does not experience any discomfort from the saddle, as this could colour its attitude for a long time to come. With discomfort perhaps leading to behavioural problems, which greatly increase the difficulty of training.
Becausesaddles can be adjusted to match the sometimes rapid change in shape, horse comfort is always maximised. The polypropylene tree is almost indestructible so should the young horse roll onto it a broken tree will not result. (if it does break we will replace it free of charge!)
With the rider’s weight and riding forces taken off the wither muscles these tend to improve so the back is horse shaped rather than saddle shaped.
With the saddle shaped back the saddle tends to sit in behind the shoulder blade so blocking its rearward circling movement as the front leg completes a stride, so inhibiting stride length, collection and lateral movements. Thepanel eliminates this blocking effect as it just covers the back edge of the shoulder blade and as it rotates rearwards it flexes to accommodate the movement.