Saturday, January 31, 2015

dramatic interpretation of saddle shopping (via gifs)

The following is an interpretive dance between a mechanical pony (representing me) and my cat (the voice of reason), reflecting on the saddle shopping experience. 

unlikely dancing partners

Via gifs bc duh. 

me: "woot woooot i found a promising trial saddle!! so EXCITE, much HOPE!!"


cat: "it's an all purpose with questionable leather and reviews saying it's not great for jumping"
me: "no no, not listening... la la la i can't HEAR YOU"


cat: "oh, it also doesn't fit your horse"
me: " ... boo"


You can pretty much replace the cat's points with anything - who knew there are so many ways to derail a potential saddle?!?! So I feel this realistically conveys the general saddle shopping experiences - both the highs and low low lows lol.



***


Re: the Stubben - after my first test ride I'm feeling.... conflicted. It was comfortable and Isabel went very nicely. And it seems to mostly fit her, tho it maybe moves a little bit over fences? Or was that just my imagination? Perhaps that's something that a reflock can fix?


stubben

But also, my position in the saddle reminds me of the Wintec - particularly pinching my knees, tipping my upper body forward and swinging my lower leg back. Like I'm 'perching.' I'll be curious to see what trainer P thinks... 

wintec

A LOT of this probably just has to do with my own positional flaws... And I obviously don't expect a saddle to magically transform my eq into something it just isn't. But idk... things felt better in the Bates - like my legs felt longer and wrapped around Isabel (rather than curling or pinching) and I stayed more centered over the saddle? 

bates

Altho maybe I'm just imagining things bc these three pics video stills don't really look very different, do they... Thoughts anyone? 

24 comments:

  1. Imo the pictures are very similar. I think you look less perched in the Bates picture because it is a split second later in the trajectory. That said you need the saddle you feel most secure you in, maybe you haven't found it yet. I'm excited to see what your trainer says.

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    1. thanks - i did try to grab stills from the same-ish moment in takeoff, but sadly the focus goes from plain old 'bad' to abysmal from moment to moment... that's definitely a good point tho!

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  2. I love your blog. So. Much.
    Never change!

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  3. Dont buy something you dont 100% love

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    1. that's good advice - at least by trying so many different things i'm learning more about what constitutes 'love' in my book - and what is just 'like' haha

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  4. A saddle won't magically fix your eq, but it can definitely hinder it. It looks like you ride fairly short over fences so maybe something with a long, forward flap even if you aren't long legged. A too short/not far enough forward flap can tend to create the pinched knee habit which just throws everything else off. I noticed in the pics that it looks like your knee is crammed up almost over the flap, so the longer and more forward flap could really help.

    Best of luck finding a new saddle!

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    1. interesting points - i think you might be on to something about paying closer to flap placement and size - thanks!

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  5. I laughed with the gifs! You're awesome!

    Saddle shopping is a huge pain but it is soooo worth it once you find something you love! Definitely don't give up on the search until you find something that sings to you. You will find it. Don't compromise!

    In terms of comparing your seat on different saddles, I'd be more inclined to look at pics of your position on the flat: you'll clearly be able to see if a saddle pushes you forward, places you in a chair seat, etc. It could be because of the angle these jumping photos were taken, but I'm seeing the same thing Jodi mentioned: it looks like your knee ends up in front of the flaps on all 3 saddles when going over fences. I'd definitely look at saddles with a more forward flap than what these have.

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    1. thanks! and that's a good point about considering the differences on the flat v differences over fences - and it reminds me of a point my trainer made in comparing our wintec to the trial bates... in any case - i'm definitely going to keep my eyes peeled for a better flap geometry :)

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  6. Replies
    1. haha thanks! i probably spent too much time making them, but i kind of love them now too :)

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  7. I agree with looking at pics on the flat in addition to jumping pics -- especially of where the saddle drops your leg naturally (due to placement of the stirrup bars). While jumping will show you some things, you and everyone above are right that the point in your trajectory and your own personal equitational flaws will greatly influence your over-fences position (you and I seem to have the same ones! Knee pinches, body goes forward -- perhaps try dropping your stirrups down a hole? I know its not a popular idea but I found it helped me a lot in the past). Definitely go for something you feel secure in and love, as that will help your confidence too!

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    1. interesting idea about dropping my stirrups -- i actually only recently started shortening them over fences to try and help... but perhaps that won't be necessary once i'm riding in a saddle that's shaped a bit better for me? in any case, thanks and hopefully i'll find the right one soon!

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  8. Love the gifs! Whenever I've gotten a new saddle it seems to take me a few weeks to adjust to it...maybe a little more time?

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    1. thanks!! and i suspect you're right about giving each saddle a fair trial - the only bummer is that i'm kind of limited by each shop's rules. and they mostly allow for a single week trial (with a little leeway here and there)...

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  9. The gifs...so many lolz...

    I agree with Jodi's comment- something with a longer, more forward flap may help. I have a very forward flap Ainsley Cross Country Pro National saddle for jumping. It's got an EXTREMELY forward flap, which really helps me keep my lower leg in the correct position, even though I have kind of stumpy legs. (I am also 5'9, so maybe they aren't as stumpy as I think they are.) The downside of a very forward flap saddle is that it hinders dressage work- even when I drop my stirrups to dressage length, the build of the saddle tilts me forward. (That's what it's designed to do, after all.)

    Anyway, good luck in the neverending saddle search!!

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    1. haha thanks!! and i will pay closer attention to the flaps on my trial saddles. it's hard bc there are so very few saddles that even have the right seat/tree combo... but there's no sense in paying shipping over and over again for saddles that i won't find comfortable...

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  10. I feel you on the cat gifs saddle shopping!

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    1. haha thanks! i'm pretty sure that, given enough time, i could come up with cat gifs to explain all the problems in the world lol

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  11. Ugh, I feel the same way about saddle shopping! It's such a roller coaster of emotion

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    1. i am pretty much stuck on that roller coaster right now ... parts are very fun, other parts - not so much lol

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