Saddle fit help/recommendations for rider with long femurs

Recently realized that my saddle doesn’t fit me correctly. The bars are too far forward for my extremely long femur. The Schleese website has a great article about the issue, which is apparently common in female riders: http://www.schleese.com/documents/Leg%20Length%20and%20your%20position%20June%2008.pdf

For now, I read that you can use vet wrap on the stirrup bar to move it farther back. Anyone tried this? Can you explain it to me? Is it safe?

For later, any riders with this issue who can recommend jump and dressage saddle models that work for them? Schleese offers the “extra extended bar” option, but are there other brands out there designed for riders with long femurs (Schleese is a bit out of my price range)?

Thanks!

I love my Stubbens. I’ve got a Roxane and and ooooollllld Aramis. Both fit my long legs well. I know a lot of long legged men who ride and foxhunt in the Roxane. The Aramis is an old school no frills flat dressage saddle. It looks like the old Tristan’s and Parzivals if you google them. I found it for a few hundred on eBay. The Roxane was under a grand used at a consigned shop.

The forward balance saddles (e.g. Vega, Prestige) work best for me, with jumping saddles at least. I still need models/versions with a custom extra-forward extra-long flap, but it is the basic geometry and placement of the bars that makes these saddles work for me. A long/forward flap in the British brands gives my femur/knee somewhere to go, but the balance isn’t right so they put me in a chair seat and I always feel as though I’m falling backward and fighting the saddle. Can’t really say for dressage saddles, as I’ve yet to find one that is perfect for me…

My saddle fitter did this for me as a temporary fix - added a very slim leather piece that wrapped around the front of the stirrup bar (closest to front of horse), effectively pushing the leather back by 1/2 inch or so. It seemed perfectly safe although it was a dressage saddle - no running and jumping. Not sure vet wrap would be sturdy enough to hold up under pressure.

Have you tried Black Country saddles? I have very long femurs and this saddle just seems to fit me better than any other I have tried. I have also heard of people putting a hairband around the stirrup bar to move the leather back a bit.

I have been struggling to find saddles due to my long femur. I’ve found that my Stubben Siegfried CS fits my leg but unfortunately I don’t like it. Stackhouse saddles seem to fit my leg, and surprisingly Toulouses have been a great fit for me. As far as dressage the only saddle I’ve found that fits me at all is a Passier Grand Gilbert.

I used to do this with a dressage saddle but used a piece of clear rubber/plastic tubing. It was with (what would now be a very old) County Competitor when the stirrup bars were set too far forward for a lot of us. You can find the tubing stuff at a hardware store, probably in the plumbing department…

Meant to add that I have used rubber martingale rings and running martingale rein stops as stirrup bar spacers. Works fine, but you want to make sure there’s enough extra space on the bar.

The new nunnfiner rubber keepers work great for this as well. Pop two on the front of the stirrup bar, one on top of the other.

I have freaky long femurs. Like, FREAKY LONG. LOL.

Oh, and I’m poor. Actually all of my saddles have been gifts except for two (which I have since sold.

The ones I have now that fit my weirdo leg – a Collegiate Convertible Diploma with a long forward flap for jumping. Both my dressage saddles (of COURSE my two horses are 100% opposite shapes) are from Walsall saddlers – one is a Black Country (omg, butt candy) and they angled the flap slightly forward for me. The other is a K&M off the rack and it fits me well too.

One thing I did which made a HUGE and immediate difference – my first saddles were 17.5". Now (after a saddler FINALLY told me that saddle size depends on your leg, not your butt!), everything I have is 18". So. Much. Better.

Another vote for Black Country! I’m also in the freaky long femur club. My jump saddle has an extra, extra forward flap to accommodate it. Perfection!

I’m not a tall person, but do have a freakishly long femur. My favorite jump saddle so far has been a Jeffries Flyover, luckily it fits my current TB very well so I get to ride in it. I’ve also ridden in Black Country saddles belonging to friends and liked them too.

My dressage saddle is an older stackhouse and unlike most dressage saddles I can ride comfortably in it is only a 17’’ rather than an 18’’ leg usually makes necessary.

My current challenge is trying to find a jump saddle that fits both my long femur and my pony’s (13.2 h Morgan) short back. We’re currently making do with an older Wintec jump saddle (of the monoflap style) that fits him beautifully, but I’d honestly like something that could accommodate my stirrups going a hole or two shorter without my knee hanging over the front of the saddle. Any suggestions for the short-backed horse/long femur-ed rider combo?

[QUOTE=RiderInTheRain;7677827]I’m not a tall person, but do have a freakishly long femur. My favorite jump saddle so far has been a Jeffries Flyover, luckily it fits my current TB very well so I get to ride in it. I’ve also ridden in Black Country saddles belonging to friends and liked them too.

My dressage saddle is an older stackhouse and unlike most dressage saddles I can ride comfortably in it is only a 17’’ rather than an 18’’ leg usually makes necessary.

My current challenge is trying to find a jump saddle that fits both my long femur and my pony’s (13.2 h Morgan) short back. We’re currently making do with an older Wintec jump saddle (of the monoflap style) that fits him beautifully, but I’d honestly like something that could accommodate my stirrups going a hole or two shorter without my knee hanging over the front of the saddle. Any suggestions for the short-backed horse/long femur-ed rider combo?[/QUOTE]

My horse is a short backed Arab. The Stubbens fit him fine. He’s one to buck and LOUDLY protest if something is too long for his liking.

Just remembered that Smith Worthington offers extended stirrup bars on some of their saddles, and will also install them on other saddles. I have never ridden in any of their saddles, but the brand might be worth adding to your list of possibilities if they are available in your area.

Thanks for the Stubben suggestion, candysgirl. I’ll have to check them out to see if one could be a fit for both my pony and my legs!