Saddle Fitting Tips from Thorowgood
If you’re preparing for a Ride Out UK event, here’s some useful advice from our supporter Thorowgood.
1) We would always recommend twice-yearly saddle checks by a qualified saddle fitter (see the Society of Master Saddler website) But if you haven’t had your saddle checked for a while, now is definitely the time to do it. Your horse may well have changed shape as he gets fitter, so a pre-event check is essential.
2) Show your saddle fitter which numnah you usually use and get them to check the saddle with it on your horse. Don’t be tempted to suddenly add extra pads or numnahs on the day of the ride, just because you’re riding for longer than you normally might. They could affect the fit & comfort of your saddle.
3) Have a careful look at the billets (girth straps) on your saddle and check them for any signs of wear & tear – such as cracking or even a split. Not everyone knows, but girth straps are actually easy for your saddler to replace – especially on a saddle such at Thorowgood. If you have a Thorowgood saddle, check that the panel screws and gullet screws are all in position and securely tightened.
4) Wash your numnah or saddlecloth! It sounds obvious, but a saddlepad that’s free from sweat or grease will be much more comfortable for your horse.
5) If you intend to make any changes to your tack, or use anything new for your Ride-Out event, do it before the day of the ride. Give your horse time at home to get accustomed to anything that’s different or unusual for him.