We offer a 14 day trial with all our saddles and sometimes custom saddles are required as some horses and riders have special requirements.The 14 day trial is a great way to tell what you need.
Here at Saddle Exchange we take choosing the right saddle for you very seriously. When you first make contact we will discuss your requirements, we are very experienced, fitting on average of 5 to 7 horses a day, in fact we once fitted 21 in one day at a Clinic organised by Endurance GB! The following things are what we need to know.
- As the photo in the middle demonstrates a seat size which is too small will put more weight in the back of the saddle. This customer would be better accomodated in the Tamar rather than the Seeker due to the shape of the seat . We take into account your physical attributes, tall riders or those with a fuller figure on short coupled horses can be accomodated by choosing the right seat and panel options and sometimes with a custom saddle. Sitting on the cantle is bad for your horses back and your own ! It distributes your weight unevenly and is uncomfortable for you and your horse .
- Age, experience and riding style. please tell us also if you have any physical injuries or weaknesses as we will need to take this into account.
- Also what colour saddle, what seat size you are most comfortable in and also which leather finishes will be most suitable as they all have different properties.
Once we know what you need we turn to your horse,
- What will your horses primary job be?
- Breed, Height and Physical Characteristics, the photos really help!
- A bit about their history, do they have any physical problems, special needs?
Horses & Ponies come in all shapes and sizes, all with unique needs. Once we have all this information we can call and see you with a selection of saddles which will fit your horse or pony, you can then ride in a selection and make your choice. As we charge a call out to visit you based on your locality and our traveling time you are under no pressure to buy a saddle and neither are we under pressure to sell one. Take all the time you need and if you wish to buy one of the saddles you pay for it in full, together with the callout and any accessories you choose, we take cash, cheques and also have a card machine for card payments. We do however make a handling charge for refunds based on how you pay for more information please see our terms and conditions.
Your 14 day trial starts here. We feel that a saddle fit does not give you enough time to make such an important decision, we therefore offer you 14 days to go and ride in the saddle to make sure you have made the right choice. Go to a show, Do an Endurance ride, have a lesson with your instructor and go for lots of hacks. We ask that you keep the stirrup leathers under the flap ( our saddles are specially constructed to allow this ) do not ride in extreme weather, ride in wellies or use girths which are Rusty or without roller buckles, that way if the saddle is returned it will not be damaged in any way. For more information on guarantees and trial periods please click on the link. During your trial please keep your stirrups under the flap, this will avoid wear on the saddle flaps. During your trial
think about the saddle, is it suitable for what you wish to do, can it be improved in any way?
- Is the seat comfortable for you?
- Do you find the flap accomodates you correctly and your knees stay in the correct position behind the knee block in all gaits ?
- Can you jump easily in the saddle and stay in balance at the height you choose to jump?
- Aesthetically do you need longer/shorter flaps to flatter your horse, particularly if the saddle is for showing?
- Did you make the correct choice of leather options? Suede or doeskin can feel very secure and Calf and Memel very soft and easily molds to the rider.
- Do you need anything special, for example a thigh roll on a dressage saddle, smaller or velcro knee blocks?
Let us know your thoughts. Again we are very experienced and if you need a custom saddle we will make one for you and exchange it for the saddle you had on trial, there is no charge for the return visit at this time, any changes to the standard saddle that are chargeable will be discussed in advance and are paid for at the time of delivery. Here’s a couple of videos with Rebecca and Justine talking about their custom saddles. For more information on choosing the right saddle for you and your horse please see our YouTube Channel, Saddle Exchange TV Saddle Fitting Information Playlist.