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I’m a dressage rider and have done english exclusively for the last 15 years. I know NOTHING about western tack. I did some western pleasure in my younger years, but the horses I rode always came with their own tack.
I’m wanting to get a western saddle for my 16 hand QH/TB cross. His dressage saddle is a Niedersuss, wide tree, 17” seat.
Can someone help me understand western saddles? There are trail, reining, cutting, barrel, show, etc. Full quarter and half quarter bars. The seat sizing seem different that english.
I just want a nice looking, comfortable, saddle to trail ride and ride in the ring. I have no idea how to fit a western saddle to him or me. Thanks for any advice!
Full quarter horse bars means the width in the front of the saddle tree is around 8″ wide semi quarter horse bars are usually 6.5 depending on manufacturer.
I enjoy my bob marshall treeless saddle it is a 14.5 and my english hunt saddle is a 17″
I also love love the way my Pro Rider barrel saddle fits just about every horse i have put it on includinv high withered horses. It is also a 14.5 seat.
The barrel saddles and treeless saddles will give you a more close contact feel and will weigh around 25lbs. A trail saddle will be between 30-40 lbs and will not give you the close contact feel.
My M Toulouse saddle is a 17″ and i feel most comfortable in a 14″ or 14.5″ western saddle.
I hope this helps!
I see your question was awhile back. Have you picked a western saddle yet? Do still have questions?
Check out Horse Saddle Shop online. They have all the decent western saddle brands and a huge amount of tips and info about choosing and fitting a saddle. They have templates and a form you fill out with all your and your horse’s details and from that, their saddle fitting expert will recommend the right saddles for you. You don’t have to buy from them, but it will give you a really good idea of what you need. They recommended 3 different saddles to me, then I saw their #1 recommendation on ebay, brand new for an amazing price. I was able to buy it with confidence knowing it would fit both me and my horse. horsesaddleshop
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