Monday, March 14, 2011

Riding In Our New Saddle

Lilly wanted me to show you a picture of her new saddle, so while she posed I took a couple pictures.

I love my new saddle!
I was hoping to see a bit of a difference in Lilly today because of her massage yesterday. I didn't expect I would, but it would have been nice if I did. The only big difference I noticed was the amount of gas she was passing... gross, I know, but it has definitely increased since before her massage. I'm assuming that's a good thing!

Since I have my new saddle and it's ready to go, we worked in the arena under saddle. Lilly was really good and wasn't looking to the outside nearly as often as she used to. The problem with this whole massage thing is I'm going to be analyzing every little thing she does wondering if the two are related. Was it just more comfortable for her prior to the massage to carry her head to the left, or was she just having a good day?

Hard to say...

When we worked on trotting she went very well, staying fairly consistent as far as speed goes. She only only "fell apart" a few times, and with a few half halts and some leg pressure, she was back to carrying herself round.

Our cantering was not so nice, however. She was strung out all over the place and very fast. I'm going to have to work more on cantering in the round pen, I think, until she can balance herself again. We have another show on Saturday, but I'll only be taking her in walk/trot. We have a bit of work to do before we're back to canter classes.

In other news, I ordered myself a pair of these:

MDC Sport Classic Aluminum Base Stirrup Irons
Thanks to the Marine Corps I have a bum left knee. At the show last Saturday, by the end of my last class, my ankle was killing me. I believe my poor ankle compensates for my knee, and it gets very uncomfortable, very quickly. They have an adjustable top, so you can ride with them in a normal position, or rotated 45 degrees or 90 degrees. They claim to "Improve leg, calf and foot position, relieve pressure in ankles, knees, and hips because these stirrups come to you, instead of you trying to find them." I've read good things about these irons, and for the price I hope they work!

I ordered them from my new favorite online store: Adams Horse Supply. I ordered my saddle there and a few other things as well and their prices are the best. They were almost $20 cheaper than Dover and SmartPak, and they offer free shipping on orders over $100.

I'm using my old leathers until the new irons arrive, but I'm very excited to try it all out.


  1. The saddle is beautiful! Im glad you seem to like it.

    I have the same issue with determining why Milo feels better. Was it his new trim? The different bit? Am I riding better? Or did he just "get" it? Hard to determine when there are lots of variables at play...

    But I wouldnt worry too much or analyze her daily. You should only see gradual changes over time, and if you try to find changes, you will most likely only get discouraged and disappointed. But it doesnt sound like you are.

    I sure hope those new irons work for you!

  2. Oh were going to need a review of those irons when you get them! Ive been thinking about them for a while but I dont want to spend the money if its not going to help! I do have the bendy irons and I find that they help my knees ALOT.

  3. Let me know how those stirrups work out. They're something that looks like it might work for me.

  4. Thanks, Milo. I'm going to do my best not to over-analyze everything. It'll be hard, but like you said, there are a lot of things going on. New saddle, massage, exercises from the book. Who knows what it could be.

    I looked at a lot of different ones and finally decided to try these, but I've heard good things about the ones you have too, Sam.

    I'll definitely do a review of the irons and let everyone know how they work! Hopefully they'll be here before the show on Saturday and I can really test them out there.

  5. Very interesting about those stirrups. I think they make something similar in western stirrups. I really should look into that because I also have a bum knee, well, both really, but the one I had surgery on gets really stiff still after a long day in the saddle.

  6. I have a friend with those stirrups and she SWEARS by them - bum knee and all. Let us know how they work out for you!

  7. Paint Girl, I think they do have some western stirrups that swivel. I'm definitely going to have to look into some kind of solution when I get my western saddle, assuming these stirrups work.

    I'm glad to hear your friend loves them, jen! I didn't find any bad reviews online, but some people said they didn't notice a difference. I'm not sure how that can be, but I sure hope it helps my knee!

  8. Lilly looks very beautiful in her new saddle.

  9. I've got serious saddle envy! I wanted a Pessoa so much back when I rode hunters, but my local tack shop refused to believe that any horse could possibly need a saddle wider than a regular tree. Why didn't I shop elsewhere? Well, I worked there...the discounts made it hard to shop elsewhere...and then there was that guilty feeling I'd get when I stepped into other tack shops lol. Gorgeous saddle!

  10. Thanks, Cowgirls! :)

    Story, that's crazy! One of the Pessoa's Lilly tried on required a medium tree and the one I got requires a wide tree. So it seems weird that they would insist on a regular tree no matter what. Discounts are good, though!

    And thanks... I'm really enjoying it!

  11. That's a beautiful saddle! Congratulations.