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Gaited horse riding is becoming an increasingly popular way to enjoy the trails with a horse. Riders love the smooth, rhythmic gait that gaited horses offer for the ultimate trail experience. As the popularity grows, more and more riders are looking for the ideal saddle to accommodate their horse’s unique conformation and gait. The following are the five best saddles for gaited horses that provide the most comfortable fit and optimal performance for gaited horses.
Circle Y Alabama Flex2 Trail Gaiter Saddle
The Circle Y Alabama Flex2 Trail Gaiter Saddle is designed with the gaited horse in mind. This saddle is built on a unique, flexible Flex2 tree that offers riders superior flexibility while ensuring the saddle maintains an optimal fit to the horse’s back. Not only does the Alabama Flex2 Trail Gaiter Saddle provide a secure and comfortable ride for riders, but it also helps minimize rubbing, pinching, and irritation to the horse.
Julie Goodnight Blue Ridge Flex2 Trail Saddle
The Julie Goodnight Blue Ridge Flex2 Trail Saddle is designed for ultimate comfort for the horse and rider. The Blue Ridge Trail Saddle has a unique Flex2 tree that moves with the horse’s individual conformation. The saddle also features ErgoBalance stirrups and the equi-fit arch panel which evenly distributes weight over the horse’s back and minimizes pressure points.
Big Horn Cordura Gaited Horse Saddle High Withers
The Big Horn Cordura Gaited Horse Saddle High Withers is an excellent option for gaited horses. This saddle has a deep Comfort Cush seat for rider comfort, and the Cordura material offers superior durability to ensure your saddle stands up to the trail for years to come. The Big Horn Cordura Gaited Horse Saddle also features D-Rings along the saddle skirt that allow for easy and secure cinch attachment.
Circle Y El Campo Cordura Gaited Trail Saddle
The Circle Y El Campo Cordura Gaited Trail Saddle is designed to provide the utmost in comfort for gaited horses. This saddle features a round skirt and broad, round panels that fit the gaited horse’s fitting requirements. It also has a special Comfort Cush seat for rider comfort. Along with the Cordura material, the El Campo Cordura Gaited Trail Saddle has a Flex2 tree for optimal fit and flexibility.
Stubben Siegfried Deep Seat Saddle
The Stubben Siegfried Deep Seat Saddle is a great option for gaited horses. This saddle features a deep, wide seat for rider comfort, as well as thumb-planes on the pommel and cantle to help keep riders securely in place. The Stubben Siegfried Deep Seat Saddle also offers flat panels and a medium, adjustable tree to ensure the best fit for gaited horses.
Gaited horse riders should consider all their options when selecting a saddle for their horse. With the right saddle, riders can ensure the ultimate comfortable and secure ride as they enjoy the trails with a gaited horse. The saddles described here are some of the best options for gaited horses, but they are by no means the only ones. Riders should always work with a local saddler to find a saddle that fits their horse’s needs and conforms to the horse’s individual conformation.
What Is A Gaited Horse?
A gaited horse is a horse that has been specifically trained to perform intermediate speeds such as walk, trot, and canter. These horses tend to have smooth gait patterns that are comfortable for the horse and rider, making them a popular choice for trail riding and pleasure riding. They are usually American Saddlebreds, Tennessee Walkers, Missouri Fox Trotters, Icelandic Horses, Paso Finos, and Peruvian Pasos.
Gaited horses have specific conformation and muscle requirements, which makes finding a properly fitting saddle important. Saddles designed specifically for gaited horses provide a comfortable, secure ride, improved stability, and better performance. Gaited horses are often trained to have seven unique gaits, and some breeds have additional gaits as well. The most common gaits are: walking, trotting, canter, running walk, rack, fox trot, and single-foot.
What to Look For in A Saddle For a Gaited Horse
If you plan to ride a gaited horse, it’s important to get the right saddle for your horse and your riding style. Gaited horses are unique and require special saddles to properly fit their conformation and gaits. To ensure the best fit and most comfortable ride, here’s what you should look for when purchasing a saddle for your gaited horse
Getting the right fit for your gaited horse is incredibly important. Gaited horses have unique conformation and muscle structure that requires a specific saddle, and it’s crucial to ensure your saddle fits your horse properly. To begin, measure your horse from withers to croup and take note of any uneven back structure or other unique conformation. Knowing your horse’s wither height is also important so you can determine the correct width of the tree. If you’re considering a used saddle, make sure you have a qualified saddle fitter measure and check the fit before you make any purchase.
The proper saddle for a gaited horse should provide both flexibility and stability. Gaited horses are typically ridden at faster speeds, so the saddle needs to be able to move with your horse in order to provide a comfortable ride. Look for a saddle that has a flexible tree, such as a Flex2 or carbon fiber tree. These lightweight trees are able to flex more easily as your horse moves, providing superior balance and allowing your horse to move with a loftier gait.
Stirrups and Other Features
Stirrups are important for comfort and safety when riding any horse, but especially when riding a gaited horse. Many saddles designed for gaited horses offer specialty stirrups like the ErgoBalance Stirrup designed by Julie Goodnight or the Triple C Comfort Stirrups. To ensure your gaited horse is comfortable, look for a saddle that has a high wither and broad panels to evenly distribute your weight. Additionally, consider a saddle with a deeper than average seat for additional security. Finally, look for D-rings along the skirt of the saddle. These are designed to keep your cinch in place and make it easier to secure the saddle for your gaited horse.
The right saddle is an important consideration when you’re planning to ride a gaited horse. When you’re looking for a saddle, make sure you consider the fit, flexibility, and special features. Taking the time to find the right saddle will help ensure the ultimate in comfort and performance for both you and your gaited horse.
The 5 Best Saddles for Gaited Horses – Final Thoughts
The Circle Y Alabama Flex2 Trail Gaiter Saddle is widely regarded as the best saddle for gaited horses. This saddle is built on a unique, flexible Flex2 tree that provides superior flexibility while ensuring the saddle maintains an optimal fit to the horse’s back. The Alabama Flex2 Trail Gaiter Saddle offers a secure and comfortable ride for riders and minimizes rubbing, pinching, and irritation to the horse. It also features a deep ComfortFit seat, D-Rings along the saddle skirt for cinch attachment, and wide panels to distribute the rider’s weight evenly over the horse’s back. With the Circle Y Alabama Flex2 Trail Gaiter Saddle, gaited horse riders can ensure a comfortable and secure ride while enjoying the trail.
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