Checking the fit of your saddle is a must for any horse owner, but how often should this be? We chat to Di Fisher, a Society of Master Saddlers saddle fitter, to find out more.
It’s recommended by the Society of Master Saddlers (SMS) that saddles should be checked at least twice a year. However, some horses change shape more often, due to fitness, condition and age and would obviously require more regular visits.
If your horse’s workload increases or decreases, think about getting his saddle checked more often. Saddles themselves can also become out of balance over time as the flocking in the panels can settle. This affects new saddles in particular, so always get them checked within three to six months of its first fitting.
How do I know when my saddle needs checking?
There are a number of reasons that could suggest you need to get your saddle checked, some of these may include:
- If you’re struggling to maintain your position when riding
- If you feel your horse may be restricted in any way
- If the saddle no longer feels correctly balanced
- If you feel the saddle is moving around too much
- If the panel of your saddle has become uneven, hard or lumpy
Call your Qualified Saddle Fitter (QSF) out to investigate whether you need any adjustments made to your saddle. A correctly fitted saddle will not only improve your comfort while riding, but also that of your horses.