Proud Affiliate of Saddlefit 4 Life®

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“A picture is worth a thousand words”.

Since that is true, moving pictures must be worth a million words! Schleese has simplified the art of “DIY” diagnoses of the most common issues we have encountered over the years with our educational instructional videos that you can watch and follow along with your own horse. . Each of our videos is only a few minutes long and won’t take much of your time to watch (unless of course you become so entranced with what you see that you decide to do a “Schleese marathon” and watch them all!). Easy and clear instructions on how to identify the problems a poorly fitting saddle can cause. AND – here’s the best part! If you decide to book a personal evaluation and every single one of the “9 Points of Saddle Fit” is absolutely correct for your horse – we will refund your entire evaluation fee!

So join the growing ‘herd’ (no pun intended) of riders who have pushed our total YouTube guests close to 1,000,000 and learn for yourself the difference a well-fitting saddle can make for you – and your horse!  We welcome your thoughts and your feedback!

9 Points of Saddle Fit Summary

Tip 1

Balance

The center of the saddle (seat area) should be parallel to the ground while on the horse's back.

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Tip 2

Wither Clearance

Clearance at the withers should be 2-3 fingers for normal withers, whereas, mutton withers will have more clearance and high withers will have less clearance.

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Tip 3

Gullet Channel Width

The gullet should be wide enough not to interfere with the spinal processes or musculature of the horse's back (3-5 fingers).

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Tip 4

Full Panel Contact

The panel should touch the horse's back evenly all the way from front to back; some panels may be designed off the back end to allow the back to come up during engagement.

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Tip 5

Billet Alignment

The billets should hang perpendicular to the ground so that the girth is positioned properly and not angled either forwards or backwards.

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Tip 6

Saddle Length

The shoulder and loin areas should not carry any weight of the saddle and rider. Rider weight should be on the saddle support area only.

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Tip 7

Saddle Straightness

The saddle should not fall off to one side when viewed from back or front. The tree points should be behind both scapulae (shoulder blades).

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Tip 8

Saddle Tree Angle

The panel tree points should be parallel to the shoulder angle to position saddle properly.

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Tip 9

Saddle Tree Width

The tree width should be wide enough for saddle to fit during the dynamic movement of the horse.

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Testimonials

Wow, wow, wow, wow! I am so grateful and amazed at your generosity. It’s taken me a long time to write because I didn’t think I could possibly find the words to express my thanks adequately. I still don’t have the words but am finally writing anyway! My new saddle is amazing!! When you decided we needed a special new saddle, I thought it was really for my horse. After all, I hadn’t had any problems with saddle fit for myself when the saddle fit the horse and my last saddle was comfortable for me. I knew the new saddle would fit Juilliard beautifully, but I have been shocked at how big a difference it has made for me too! My seat and legs are always exactly where they need to be, without me even trying. And this isn’t just when the horse is still. It’s at all gaits, lateral work, etc.! I feel like I’m sitting IN my horse, not on top of him. My legs are long without me having to stretch them down. I have always envied how male dressage riders have such effortless position, and now I sit just as effectively as they do! This saddle puts my weight over precisely the right spot on my horse’s back. In every saddle prior to this, I’ve always felt behind the motion with Juilliard’s medium and extended trots. Now for the first time I am in balance with the motion for these big trots. It is wonderful to no longer be fighting my saddle, and to instead have one that makes my job more easy and comfortable! The biggest change I have noticed with Juilliard is the adjustability of the canter. With previous saddles, in even just a lengthened canter, it always felt like the rear of the saddle was blocking the movement of his back, and he had to brace against it hitting him. Often I had to go into a half seat or he would buck instead of making his stride longer. Now his back has room to move with the new saddle, and he easily and willingly elongates and makes big round jumpy strides (like he hasn’t done since he was young and saddle length wasn’t an issue). This is such an amazing saddle for both of us, and I can’t thank you enough for making it happen! Many, many thanks!!

— Jennifer Chong - Damascus, OR

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