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Discuss Saddles for short people? at the Tack & Equipment forum - Horse Forums.

I know i'm been posting a lot but I am overwelmed. I got a much ...
  1. #1
    Senior Member BayHorseLuv's Avatar
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    Saddles for short people?

    I know i'm been posting a lot but I am overwelmed. I got a much larger spending limit for a saddle and now I can pretty much buy a collegiate, courbette or used bates, etc. I need close contact saddle that has a short flap that is not too far forward. Something similar to the wintec CC or the bates CC. I think the arosa and the axxis look promising but I keep on hearing bad things about the leather dye and sore backs. Then some other saddles I like are the ovations but they seem to have very long forward flaps for jumping. Also there are the circuits and thornhills and tons of other saddle that I've never heard of. I do not want an all purpose. Those have long flaps and put me in a chairseat. I like close contacts. I will most likely be buying a saddle online based on photos. I would like a saddle with changable gullets and there's not much of a problem fitting the horses I ride. I can pretty much have a pick of 2-3 saddles incase some don't fit that I can return or sell. So yeah I think I want something someone here has that they reccomend or that your friend has.

  2. #2
    Senior Member+ juniormylove's Avatar
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    Well, I know that from the two saddles I've had, the collegiate seemed more short-legged friendly (ie, my knee hung off the flap at normal stirrup lengths). That was some old early graduate though, so I don't know about the newer ones.

    Right now I have a dover circuit (just the close contact, I believe) and if you have short legs, particularly from hip-knee, then I wouldn't recommend it. I have fairly long legs (long even for my 5'8.5" self) and the flap is pretty much perfect for me.

    Other then that, I don't know much, sorry!
    In on the joke and I can't stop laughing.

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    Senior Member morgannut's Avatar
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    I have sat in the Collegiate Diploma in the tack store, I believe they call it a close contact -- I am 5'0" with a 28" inseam and the flap was good for me, most CC saddles it's too far forward so either my leg is out in front of me reaching for the knee roll, or it's in the right place and there's daylight between me and the knee roll. This one fit really well, unfortunately I don't think it comes with the changeable gullets and it was nowhere near wide enough for Partner.
    The Bates Caprilli fit well as far as the flap length but I didn't like the seat, too flat for me and a little wide. But it does have the changeable gullets and I think you can get it with the CAIR panels too if that's what you're interested in.
    Sorry, I didn't actually ride in either of these saddles because they wouldn't fit my horse, so I can't say how they really are "in action" for leg position, comfort etc.
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  4. #4
    Senior Member BayHorseLuv's Avatar
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    Well if it helps I know the old collegiate models fit me ok. The ones with no knee flaps and short round flaps. Also the bates I tried fits me but I don't want a bates. I'm still thinking ovation if there is a model with a short flap. I need a 14 or shorter flap.

  5. #5
    Senior Member phoenixfh13's Avatar
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    I have the collegiate diploma and it LOVE it... I do have the long flap since well I'm pretty darn tall. But that isn't a long long flap. That model of collegiate does tend to run small in the flap. See if you can buy from somewhere online were they have either a demo or a return policy!
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    My Stubben Artus is very short legged friendly.
    I just saw a fantastic used one on Ebay go for $350... er well the seller pulled it because they sold privately, but...

    Good luck!

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    One of the Collegiates is built in the same shape as the Bates CC (which I agree is short-leg friendly). I think it is either the Alumni or the Diploma...I'm sure someone can correct me.

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    If the saddle is plain flap cc, it's relatively inexpensive to shorten the height. If it's padded flap, and the padded part doesn't have to altered, then it's no worse than having a plain flap altered. Either way, the knee rolls on a cc should be out of the way and shortening a cc flap is less effort and expense than shortening a dressage saddle.


    The Wintec 500 , Pro Jump, the Bates Caprilli cc, and the Collegiate Convertible ccs are all the same tree but may differ in degree of forwardness of the flaps. The Pro Jump Wintec is more forward than the 500 Wintec, for certain. I haven't sat in a Caprilli b/c there are none here to try, lol.

    Another convertible tree saddle that I think is made a whole lot better than any of those Bates models is the Ashley & Clarke Ayr. I own two of them, and their pics are posted here in the Gallery. Mine have the adjustable Sherwood tree but I only have two gullets for it. The Sherwood tree is additional cost. Ashley & Clarke is sold by Gayer or Gayres Saddlery in Maryland. They have a web site. I bought both of my Ayrs used from Craigslist. The seat is deep and the head is cut back. Buy it 1/2 to 1" larger than your normal cc size. I think you can order it your way, so far as flap length goes. My dark one is longer than the light color one.

    The Stubben Edleweiss is about the same as the Artus and might be easier to find.

  9. #9
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    FYI Bates come in regular and forward flap as well as regular or long flap. Something to keep in mind if you're looking at used.

  10. #10
    Full Member Zooperdee's Avatar
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    My friends have a Thornhill. They're 5'2 and 5'.. I think? It's a nice saddle, but not my favorite. As to the above poster, Bates aren't my favorite. They are, indeed, very well fitted.
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