- Saddle Pad
- Grooming Brush and Hoof Pick
Now Let’s Saddle Up:
Before tacking up your horse do a thorough brushing, check your horse for any minor injuries, such as scraps on its legs, bug bits or sore spots and pick out the hooves. If you ride with protection boots/splint boots/bell boots you can put them on now.
Check your Passoa saddles thoroughly before you place it on your horse. Look at the tread on the stirrups and replace any worn stirrup pads. Make sure the saddle leather is in good shape and the girth straps are not worn and your saddle pad is clean.
For an English saddle; run the stirrups to the top of the stirrup leathers before placing the saddle on your horse. To do this; hold the stirrup in one hand and the stirrup leather in the other and pull the stirrup up to the top of the saddle. For a Western saddle place the stirrup over the horn or seat area to prevent it from flopping down and slapping your horse on the side – this could startle your horse.
Carefully place the saddle blanket or saddle pad ahead of the withers on your horse’s back and then slide it back into the correct position this will insure that the hair is lying flat. The saddle blanket should be 1or 2 inches in front of your horse’s withers, this will allow enough pad to be pulled up into the pommel/tree of the saddle to allow air flow and relief of pressure on the wither.
Place the saddle on your horse in a sweeping fluid motion, the saddle tree should be placed approximately 2 inches behind the withers, then move to the off side and pull the girth strap down for western saddle – for English saddles attach the girth buckles to the billet straps.
Move back to the near side and reach under your horse. Pull the girth toward you and slide the girth into the girth straps. Tighten the girth until the strap is just tight enough to keep the saddle in place should the horse move around. Be sure to recheck your girth before mounting and after riding for a few minutes on your horse.
If your horse is quiet enough to stand still, you can adjust the girth while mounted by reaching down and pulling the girth into the next hole for an English girth. Otherwise, dismount, tighten the girth and remount.
At any time during your ride, if you feel the saddle has shifted, dismount and readjust your saddle.