Science of Motion and Schleese Saddles & Training

Its continues as always to be busy and from my launch last year in July the feedback has been really positive. I have been working with many horses with behavioural issues where we have seen big improvements.

I could not be happier when I see a horse go from being unhappy to turning a corner and performing better - able to perform the role that the owner has intended. Through the training of Rehab horses and the ongoing work I have been doing with Science of Motion my eye is becoming even better at spotting the potential problems that owners are having. I have had a customer with a horse who would not go forward who naps on hacks, refuses to go in the school and is generally unhappy. With a change of saddle and corrective shoeing this horse is now in work and she is able to have lessons!!

I have another who has kissing spine and has been unable to perform his job as a Dressage Horse. Together we are working on exercises and in-hand work to firstly get the horse physically in a better shape. The saddle will then need to be changed when the horse can be ridden again. Already after 3 weeks this horse is trotting in hand maintaining a rhythm and contact - the back is starting to look stronger and his future looks brighter. The road is a longer one than medicating or operating - but the horse will last longer if he learns to use his back muscles in a way that corrects the imbalance that caused the kissing spine in the first place.

During my ongoing search for always being able to find the best option for a horse I found Science of Motion and Schleese Saddles. I have spent time training with Jochen Schleese in Germany and feel really excited about my added knowledge. Schleese Saddles offer something different. This is a saddle that can be adjusted in many ways and not just through a standard fixed gullet plate. The fixed gullet plate system works well for lots of horses - BUT what happens when it doesn't? What can we offer as saddle fitters with the confidence it is going to do all of the things we need? Fit the Rider? and Fit the Horse? Allow the Shoulder room to move as well as Fit the Rider? Give the rider support and be the right shape for the horses back? Be wide enough in the channel for the spine and accommodate a woman's pelvis as it should? The combination of what we are trying to achieve is complicated and I am determined to do it really well - so thats why my search began.

Some saddle manufacturers in the UK are great at adapting saddles to work for some people and horses - but are they not always adjustable and within a very sort time another purchase may be necessary.

So this is what I found with this saddle! The Schleese Saddles can be adjusted in the tree width as well as the angle. You can also adjust to accommodate that bigger shoulder - so one side of the saddle can be adjusted wider than the other. All of them accommodate the spine width correctly, not getting narrower at the back or the front!

Schleese saddle fit training teaches us to completely measure and study the rider in the saddle - we are able to work out exactly what works anatomically. Schleese Saddles are also made to accommodate the female pelvis. I attend many women riders who tell me the saddle they are riding in gives them a bad back, makes there hips and knees ache. And some of the worst situations is from women who have a saddle that is causing them to bleed or bruise so much they can't ride for days.

I want to be able to offer something that ticks all of the boxes not just one or two. Something that I can confidently put on a horse and walk away satisfied the horse will be able to preform its role without the saddle compromising this.

The only negative I have found with the Schleese Saddle is the price! They start at 3,400 euros - which initially I thought is expensive. However when you work out how many saddles you generally have to buy in the life time of the horse, how much the vet costs, the physio, the massage therapist and your horses generally its just a snippet of the bigger picture. I hear of horses being put to sleep weekly from Kissing Spine - a balanced rider in a well fitted saddle can go a long way to preventing this!

I love saddle fitting but most of all my greatest passion is seeing a happy horse, able to do its job to the best of its ability.
My quest for finding the right saddles to accommodate horses and riders is always my first priority. I really like the Schleese Saddle but understand budget does not always allow.