Fit is Everything - Infinitely Adjustable for Optimal Comfort & Performance!

Tip 9: Saddle Tree Width - Western Saddles

Did you know… Saddle Trees come in either: Narrow, Medium or Wide widths?
Ask yourself… But what do these terms actually mean? And what will a saddle with a tree that is an incorrect width for your horse actually do when your horse is in motion?

Did you know… Saddle Trees come in either: Narrow, Medium or Wide widths?

Ask yourself…

But what do these terms actually mean? And what will a saddle with a tree that is an incorrect width for your horse actually do when your horse is in motion?

Learn the importance of a Saddle’s Tree Width
Watch this informative video for some saddle fit tips on “Saddle Tree Width” that may help you! Whether you answered yes or no to the above questions… Schleese is offering you further information on the importance of a proper tree width to prevent long-term damage to your horse.

The tree width must be wide enough for the horse’s shoulders to rotate freely under the tree. But too often we see a saddle with a tree width that is too narrow for a particular horse. Not only can your horse’s shoulders not move freely under such a saddle, but the saddle can be driven forward on top of his shoulders as he is being ridden. This will result in all of the problems we’ve already discussed in previous saddle fit tips.

If the tree width is too wide, while the horse is being ridden, the entire saddle may rock from side to side, or the back half of the saddle may twist to one side or the other.

Why do saddle makers and saddle fitters consider both tree width and tree angle when fitting a saddle to a particular horse? Tree width and tree angle need to be adjusted together. If the width of your saddle’s tree is correct for your horse, but the angle is incorrect, the saddle will not fit your horse. At times both the width and angle of the saddle’s tree are incorrect for a particular horse. As we discussed in Saddle Fit Tip # 8 – Tree Angle, this can cause permanent, long-term damage to your horse.

A properly fitted saddle will have a tree that is wide enough and an angle that is correctly adjusted so as to avoid hitting the spinalis muscle. This is also a reflex point that inhibits or completely stops forward movement. When a stallion breeds a mare, he bites her on this reflex point so that she stands still, hollows her back, and rotates her pelvis open. In order to locate your horse’s spinalis muscle, draw a line 4” down from the base of your horse’s withers, and then draw a horizontal line back. The saddle must stay off of that triangle.

                                                         

Is this a challenge you are facing? Are you experiencing other saddle fit issues?
Tell us about them and let us help! 
miriam@schleese.com
I would like to book a Personal Saddle Fit Evaluation
My horse will thank me !
I would like to attend an educational lecture/demo
miriam@schleese.com

Find an event near you

Rider
Testimonials

Hi, I bought an older used Schleese a week or so ago and got it just in the nick of time to have it fitted [by your fitter at the last clinic]. I can’t believe the difference it’s made in my horse! Our first ride was just lovely. We had our 2nd ride today, and she is moving like a different horse! I feel like I’m part of my horse. We’ve had our share of saddle woes and attempts at fittings through the years. How nice to be able to give her the gift of a saddle that really fits her—and can be adjusted as she changes shape! Not only is my mare difficult to fit, but I am, too. I have a very long femur and my knee has always stuck so far out in front of the saddle or my knees were so wide, there was no way for me to sit properly. Not a problem for the Schleese! In fact, I was amazed that when I rode in this saddle on my very round horse that I felt like she was suddenly much narrower because my leg was actually in the correct position. I even had to shorten my stirrups! I can’t thank you enough. We’re looking forward to many more wonderful rides together and I can’t see myself ever riding in anything other than a Schleese!

— Kathy Taylor - Willow Park, Texas

Recent Posts

Recent Comments

Archives

Categories

Meta