Top 5 Saddle Picks For Your Horse – Plus Where To Find Them

February 26, 2020 0 Comments

Learning all of the different tack pieces is one of the first things that new equestrian riders learn. The basic parts as most of us know are the bridle, girth, horse halter, pad and arguably the most important piece of tack: the saddle itself.

In many parts of the world, people still do ride bareback, or saddle-less. It can even be a useful way for riders to improve their balance and feel for the horse’s movements. Moreover, anybody who wishes to ride in competitions, on the road, or learn many of the techniques associated with English and Western riding will need to use a saddle.

Those who have previous experience with saddle shopping have come to find out that it can be frustrating. Obviously, there is an overwhelming amount to learn about saddles. From function, fit, leather types, hundreds of brands and their qualities–How do you choose the right one for you and your horse?

Listed below are 5 different saddles for different levels of activity that your horse may endure. Hopefully, this article will help you make the all important decision.

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General Purpose

These saddles are ideal for the beginner and intermediate riders who enjoy various riding types. They are sturdy with flaps that are cut forward and can accommodate the rider well for basic jumping, dressage and hacks or hunts in the country. Riders balance well on these saddles and there are no pads at the front of the seat for the knee. They are often used in riding schools because there are so many riders of different abilities and sizes that ride there.

Top Pick:

Wintec 2000 All Purpose Saddle CAIR
Retail Price: $1,079.94

This all-round saddle has been designed to suit the rounder build of a cob-type horse. It offers close contact to avoid that ‘perched-on-top’ feeling. Also, the medium depth seat is ideal for a range of activities. 

Are you someone who participates in multiple disciplines? Have you been searching for a saddle that isn’t so “one-discipline” focused? Well we have your solution! The Wintec 2000 All Purpose Saddle is and extremely comfortable all purpose seat with top of the line performance features like the Ergonomic Stirrup Bar and Flexibloc system.

The Wintec 2000 All Purpose Saddle ensures superior fit, comfort and stability so what are you waiting for! Get yours today!

Included features

  • Comes with the Black Medium gullet
  • Use the Easy Change Gullet System to get up to 6 different sizes from Yellow Narrow up to White X-Wide


Dressage saddles are designed for advanced riders who are regularly competing in flat-work competitions. The saddles enhance the traditional straight-legged and upright torso dressage position. They have a deeper seat that looks more like a U-shaped curve when viewed from the side. This is intended to provide better balance for the rider. Dressage saddles have straight flaps and they are made from lightweight, thin material which provides the rider with closer leg contact for precision moves.

Top Pick:

Bates Wide Dressage Saddle Heritage CAIR
Retail Price: $2,519.94

The low profile panel design of this option offers the rider a closer contact with their horse and good stability. It has movable under-flap thigh blocks, which can be repositioned as required. This saddle has a changeable gullet bar allowing you to have your saddle adjusted if your horse changes shape.

The Bates Wide Dressage Saddle is an elegant, high-performance dressage saddle specially designed for the wider horse. Featuring a deep seat with a narrow waist and broad sitting area for greater support.

This saddle maximizes comfort and performance of the horse by utilizing the Ergonomic Stirrup Bar, adjustable Y-girthing and Flexibloc system.

Your horse will notice the difference in this saddle and have access to more freedom of movement thanks to the EASY-CHANGE Fit Solution and CAIR Cushion System. Enjoy comfort the right way with the Bates Wide Dressage Saddle!

Key Features

  • Adjustable Flexibloc System
  • Drop panel point
  • Ergonomic stirrup bars
  • Adjustable Y-girthing
  • Short triple girth points

Included features

  • Saddle comes with the Black Medium gullet
  • Use the Easy Change Gullet System to get up to 6 different sizes from Yellow Narrow up to White XWide

Jumping Saddle

Jumping saddles are designed to push the rider slightly forward into the two-point jumping position for when they are going over fences. This is done by providing a flatter seat than dressage saddles which looks more like a mellow C-shaped curve when it is viewed from the side. Also, the saddle flaps are much bigger which gives the leg more support and there is padding at the front of the flaps which provides stability and protection for the lower leg during jumps.

Top Pick:

Wintec Pro Jump Saddle CAIR
Retail Price: $1,199.94

This single flap saddle gives a close contact. The tree has a flat rake cantle for a more open seat making it ideal for cross-country riding. It also has a free-swinging girthing system allowing greater flexibility when fitting.

The Wintec Pro Jump Saddle is a cutting edge deep seat jump saddle that includes top performance features like an Ergonomic Stirrup Bar and Flexibloc system.

Ideal for use in all levels of competition and training, the Pro Jump Saddle offers greater security with a deep seat as well as a narrow waist that ensures ultra close contact.

So, don’t miss out on the superior fit, comfort, and stability that the Wintec Pro Jump Saddle can provide for you.

Included features

  • Saddle comes with the Black Medium gullet
  • Use the Easy Change Gullet System to get up to 6 different sizes from Yellow Narrow up to White XWide

Western Saddles

When you think of horse saddles, you probably imagine a Western-style saddle. Of course, these types of seats are typically very comfortable for long rides. Easily identified by its large horn located at the front of the saddle, Westerns come in many varieties from roping and rodeo types to barrel racing to hunting types.

Top Pick:

South Bend Lady Flex Trail 2002
Retail Price: $910.80

Lightweight at around 20 lbs. That means throwing it up on your horse won’t be such a hassle! The short skirt length and flex tree are to help give forgiveness in fit, so your horse will thank you!

A lot of our riders don’t want to be sliding around in the seat so we put a roughout suede seat and high cantle for seat security to keep you in the seat. Best of all, this saddle has a memory foam padded seat. One female rider said it had a great feel for a woman compared to similar models!

Hunting Saddle

Hunting saddles are designed for riders who regularly go hunting in the countryside. Many hunts involve jumps over large hedges with very steep drops on the other side. For this reason, the saddle is shaped to push the riders weight back in the saddle and their feet forwards in the stirrups. This allows the rider to remain in a safer positioning leaning backwards when they are landing over large fences. The saddles have low a low cantle and pommel which makes jumps more comfortable. They are made from durable leather to match the traditional hunting attire.

Top Pick:

Tucker Horizon Nomad Trail Saddle 249
Retail Price: $2,555.30

This style of Western saddle with the functionality of a hacking saddle. This light-weight and versatile saddle is perfect for hunting with its Panels lined with EVA foam for cushioning. Additionally, it has panels made of split leather buffalo hide for better grip on the saddle cloth.

Ordinary saddles leave your joints sore, back aching and soft areas tender. Tucker does not design ordinary saddles. Tucker is known for their extremely comfortable saddles, even after long rides. The Horizon series brings you a brand new riding experience.

The Nomad is perfect for those switching from English to Western riding and searching for plenty of leg freedom and a correct, balanced position in the seat. Ride confidently that you and your horse are receiving the ultimate comfort thanks to the advanced tree system.

The Horizon series boasts three features that bring smiles to western riders across the globe. You can read about these below.

So, where does that leave us?

Saddles can range in price from $100 to $1000 or more. Of course, this depends on their quality and purpose; custom or specialist saddles may be more expensive. Although not a cheap purchase, the right saddle can last many years for you and your horse making it very worth the while. By the way, check out for custom saddle options!

Try to pay a little bit more if you can for your first saddle, and get the best one you can. You’ll feel the rewards while riding!

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