Fitting saddles

I have problems fitting saddles to my well-rounded pony!

It can be quite difficult to find a suitable saddle for overweight ponies or horses. They have backs like tables.

A slipping saddle will eventually end up on the pony’s neck, so finding a good fitting saddle is important for both rider and horse.

Cruppers are ideal to use in a situation like this, to prevent the saddle slipping forward.

What is a crupper?

A crupper is a smooth leather strap, which connects to an adjustable strap, which connects to a ring at the centre (back of saddle) or sometimes to the front of saddle. At the end is a padded, rounded leather loop, to place the tail through.

Cruppers are also used on donkeys, driving horses and when breaking a horse to keep all the tack in place.

If your pony has never had a crupper on, take care when you first fit it as he may decide to react by kicking or bucking.

Slipping saddle

How to put the crupper on horse.

Once you have put the saddle on, take hold of the horse’s tail and place it through the padded round loop.

Make sure you put the loop well up under the horse’s dock.

Some cruppers have buckles on either side of the loop, so you can tighten it up if need be.

Next, connect to the saddle and gently make your adjustments for a comfortable fit.

Breastplates are sometimes worn as a precautionary measure in case the saddle slips back when competing in disciplines such as show jumping and cross-country.

Saddle slipping backwards!

The breastplate is designed to prevent the saddle from slipping backwards on horses with conformation faults.

It is also known as the breast girth and there are two types, the hunting and the racing style.

Breast girths are often seen on racehorses to keep the lightweight saddles in position.

The breast girth is slightly different from the breastplate as it does not attach to the girth underneath the girth, but instead it attaches to either side of the saddle to the D’s.

Breastplates are also available with elastic, which allow for a small amount of give when required.

How can I keep my balance without hurting my horse in the mouth?

A neck strap is a piece of leather that attaches around the horse’s neck.

If you lose your balance, it is much kinder on the horse to grab hold of the neck strap then use the reins to balance.

Remember every time use balance with your reins you are pulling at the horse’s mouth and this will course all sorts of problems for you and the horse.

It is particularly useful for the novice rider who finds it hard to keep balance and a very common sight in riding schools.

Neck straps are worn on young horses that are liable to suddenly leap around or buck.

The rider can take hold of the neck strap to rebalance.



Scroll down for more information on problems fitting saddles and horse training aids.

Fitting saddles > > Home

What saddle do I need? – GP Jumping showing dressage etc

How to fit a saddle – Does my saddle fit?

Saddle care – Preventing damage

Saddle problems - Parts of saddle

Western saddles

How to choose the correct girth size – What type of girth should I buy?

Which type of stirrup irons should I buy?

Horse training aids

Equine aids

Parts of the driving harness – How to harness a horse – Different types of horse harness

The blinker bridle – Horse driving bits – Harness information

Bridle parts – How to put a bridle on – How to take the bridle off

How to saddle up – Numnahs and saddle cloths

Cleaning the saddle

Cleaning the bridle – Taking the bridle apart – Putting the bridle back together – Oiling the bridle

Building a successful web site is easy. It worked for me and it can for you!