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Saddle Seat Saddles - History & Buying, Selling

A cut-back saddle used for Saddle Seat riding.

The rider's center of gravity is to the rear slightly more than in classical dressage, but the horses must have free use of their shoulders to achieve such high action and animation in their gaits. As in the discipline of dressage there is a line drawn from the rider s ear down to the heel, but with the saddle seat discipline there is a bit more of a bended knee position. The stirrups are not as long as in dressage, because of the speed at which the horses move at the trot or other gaits. Like other English saddle types, the saddle seat saddles have pads underneath, leaving a clear channel for the horse's spine.

This style of saddle, is really the only truly correct saddle to use in saddle seat equitation but the special equitation saddles have a bit of a deeper seat, while still being flatter than non-saddle seat saddles.

Saddle seat saddles have had a direct influence in the effectiveness of the horse s animation, especially the gaited horse breeds. Although collected, there is not the extreme collection found in dressage. While there is slight variation among saddle makers, because the saddle seat rider s weight and center of gravity are toward the back, the saddle flaps are wider to protect the legs and are constructed to meet the cantle further back. The rider s knee is closer to the front of the flap.

Breeds that utilize the Saddle seat saddles are the American Saddlebred, the Morgan, the Arabian, the Missouri Fox Trotter, the Tennessee Walking Horse, as well as others, if the specific animal is gifted and trained for high action show classes. If the animal is to be shown, or utilized in other disciplines, then appropriate saddles are used for that discipline. The cut back saddles are used throughout American, in Canada, England and South Africa and occasionally in other countries. Saddle Seat saddles are the saddles of choice when horses perform with high animation and they are a necessity if high animation is coupled with speed of gaits, in a collected but forward moving form.

Listings on this site by companies who make or sell saddle seat saddles can be located in the Shopping section of the site, and individual listings will display product information, often photos and pricing, and contact emails, phone numbers and links to individual Tack or Saddlery shops.

Return to English Saddles or Visit the main site page about Saddles.

You may also wish to visit pages about other styles of Saddles such as Jumping Saddles or Dressage Saddles.

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