Saturday, February 9, 2013

Well, That Was Quick

So much for a long, drawn out expedition to figure out what the heck is bothering my horse.

Today I decided to switch saddles. I happen to have another Kent and Masters saddle in my tack room I got for a screamin' deal. Its an 18" Original Cob. I bought it with the intent of using it on another horse, but that guy's a long way off from needing it.

So I plopped it on Ben, and it looked pretty level - more level than our current saddle. So I girthed him up and off we went into the arena to try it out.

It took me some getting used to - my whiny hips have become so accustomed to the narrow twist of my KM S-series dressage. But you know, it wasn't all that bad. It felt a bit bulky under my thighs, but I got pretty used to it. I think if I also swap out the thigh blocks for smaller ones and angle them, I'll be pretty good to go.

The good news is- Ben's canter improved immensely with the swap in saddles. While not perfect, it was definitely better. There was no tooth grinding, either.

Our saddle has an appt on March 7th for some TLC - so I hope an adjustment in the flocking, and perhaps a swap in gullet size is all we need on that front. If not, we'll see if this Cob can't be made to work either, though I definitely prefer my S-series.

I now have some options to play with between now and then. We'll see if the canter keeps improving with the change, or if I just got lucky today...


  1. I am not looking forward to the next few years of constant saddle changes. I have been hearing good things about the KandM saddles. Right now I have synthetics but at some point I will want to get a leather saddle again. Hope the saddle fit keeps him happy until you can hit the trails!!

  2. Let me know! I need help with our canter BIG time! We keep getting cow kicks and grunts out of him at first. He does calm down, but he's still learning so it's frustrating! Good luck!

  3. I hope it does too! I am going to try it again tonight (hopefully- depends on when the farrier arrives) to see if I have a better/worse horse after a day off. I do love the KM line, though I'll be honest, if Thorowgood (uses the same trees) had a similar S-series saddle, I would've gotten that.

    If Spyder is grunting and kicking- definitely take a look at discomfort issues and see if you can unveil anything. Its tough with the youngsters- because sometimes their discomfort with something isn't pain related- it just feels awkward or weird and they don't like it! LOL
    If you can't find anything, what worked for Ben was using trot poles - teaching him to lift his knees and soften his topline, and then the quality and rhythm of canter came with that. Along with the muscular fitness comes the muscle memory. In fact, if this saddle thing checks out, I should bring out the trot poles again for Ben....

    Good luck to you, too!