Here at Express Equine we have 2 SMS qualified saddle fitters. Sophie Welch and Leanne Jackson.
Sophie and Leanne are both horse owners competing in dressage and showjumping respectively. Both have an extensive equestrian background and between them years of knowledge and experience in various equestrian disciplines.
“Saddle fitting is about more than just flocking and fitting. It is about turning your knowledge and experience creatively into what works for each horse as an individual. Saddle fitting is not “one size fits all” it is about being part of the horse and rider combination and working within a professional team together with vets, physiotherapists, chiropractors, farriers and trainers. We all hope to get the best from our horses.”
A horses shape can change very quickly whether this is because of a change in diet, change in fitness or just through age and maturity. For example a horse can change dramatically from living out in the field all summer on the grass to coming in to a stable with restricted turn out in the winter. There may also be a change in fitness between summer and winter as daylight riding hours are reduced.
Your horse may have changed shape through injury and time off from being ridden. There maybe a change in your horses shape if your horse is young and still growing and at the other end of the scale if your horse is getting older and you are reducing ridden work.
For the competition horse muscles develop and grow. These subtle changes can be ongoing and can impact on results. Regular saddle checks can be vital especially if you have a young horse maturing rapidly. We recommend a horse regularly competing to a high standard has a saddle check as soon as you notice any changes, possibly a change in behaviour, the horses way of going or even your balance within the seat.
If your horse has changed shape for any reason then your saddle may need checking and a slight alteration with flocking, shims, a width change or a gullet change could make both horse and rider more comfortable.
Sophie and Leanne are able to do flocking, insert shims and complete width adjustments at your yard.
We recommend that your saddle is checked a minimum of twice a year.
Whether you are looking for a competition saddle or an everyday saddle for hacking we have an extensive range for you to choose from.