Ten years ago I purchased a lovely three yr. old Friesian cross to train for dressage, not realizing the size he would attain for my small frame. He quickly outgrew my extra wide saddle and my other hoop tree saddle was so very painful for my hips that I actually was diagnosed with torn labral cartilage and subsequent further OA degeneration of both hip joints. I then began to ride in my other trail saddle with panels that "sort of" fit the broad back/mutton withers but completely destroyed attempts at a effective dressage position and continued to be very painful for me.
Having spent a summer with a driving instructor and realizing that was not for me, my only choice seemed to be selling my now beautifully trained and well loved horse and finding a "skinny little one" I could perhaps ride after the recommended bilateral hip replacement surgeries.
By now you can probably see where this note is going; yes, I signed up for a Schleese evaluation last summer, rode in a loaner until my custom was made and now, after several weeks in my new Schleese, even the severe and chronic tendinitis has mostly healed and finally at age 74, I'm working with a Centered Riding instructor, attending clinics and riding better than I ever have on Mr. Propane Tank.
So, thank you for the extensive time and effort you have taken to develop saddles that enable us little older women to continue to enjoy what we have devoted so many years to attaining even with our imperfect joints, and in my case, to avoid drastic surgeries.
— Linda Greenman - Fort Collins, CO