A potted explanation / history of treeless?

Trewsers

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I always read the threads about treeless saddles with interest, but I would really like it if someone could give me an overview (not quite sure if thats the right way of putting it ) as to why they use and like them and also what they feel like to ride in ? Just a simple description really because it is another grey area within the horse world for me. I am starting to recognise names of brands etc but I would love to learn more. Thanks in advance treeless people! (And sorry if this has been asked before, but its my age and Stuff doesn't sink in lke it used to!)
 

Jessey

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No idea on the history but I'd lay money on treeless being around before tree'd saddles.

I just tried my first proper treeless and have to say it was super comfy, it gave the feel (width/roundness of the back wise) of being bareback, but with added padding and I felt very secure, I hacked straight out in it. I found after an hour my bum was getting pretty warm so I think it will be a nice way to keep warm in the winter ;) the only real hindrance I found with it was due to the level of padding under the flaps I couldn't actually get my calf on Jess, I had to either do the 'pony club flap' or really twist my legs and lift my heels to her sides, though I think this might be helped when I have stirrups and my leg is in more of a GP position. It didn't actually bother us as Jess is very reactive to seat but if you had a kick along it might be more of an issue.
 
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nat17

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I have used treeless saddles for about 15 years now, mainly because I love a big fat round cob who are difficult to get fitted with a tree'd saddle that fits for longer than 5 minutes. I also have had young cobs, who grow and mature all the time and I literally would have the saddler out monthly.

My first treeless was a lovely fitform, my second was a barefoot cheyenne, and now I have a solution on trial for 2 weeks.

I suppose some treeless saddles can give you the 'unsupported feeling' when in the saddle as its all soft material. The new solution saddle is the first one that feels like a leather tree'd saddle, both support and material wise. Other than that they are very much the same riding wise for me.

I do find I ride better in a nice treeless, it gives me a better balance and leg position.

The downsides are I find the harder to get on right, and do the girth up when on, however the new solution is easier than ever and also seems to sort itself out.
 
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Trewsers

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Do you think they are best suited to riders with a very balanced seat or would they be suitable for less balanced / able riders?
 

nat17

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I dont think there is a best suited T, I believe anyone can ride in them and I dont think I was a particularly balanced rider when I started riding on one either,
 

popularfurball

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I've found my balance has really improved using one.

We use treeless for one reason - it's the only thing madam will let me put on her, get on her and then let me stay on her with! Her weight fluctuates so readily and with her skin being so sensitive I think the softness-moulded ness of the saddle helps :)

I love ridin in it - liken it to old slippers :) easy and comfy and familiar!! It took a bit of adjusting for leg position etc and I now ride much longer but more secure in my seat.

It's not for everyone though - but equally I wouldn't rule it out.
 

Trewsers

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The general advice that I've heard is that they're not good for heavier riders because they don't spread the weight so efficiently.


That's interesting - what do we class as heavier though?Will the weight of rider will be relevant to carrying capability of horse?
 

newforest

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Found this-

"There are two main types of horse saddles, the Hungarian and the Moorish.

Cowboys in the United States use the Moorish saddle (more commonly known as the Western Saddle) which has a horn to which the lasso can be tied. A lasso puts a lot of strain on the saddle, so to hold it in place it has two strong girths, each tightened by a cinch strap. The English saddle is an example of the Hungarian saddle. Hungarian saddles have no horns. The English saddle has padding, and the stirrup is hung farther forward than on the Moorish saddle.

Riding in a Western saddle has evolved very differently to riding in an English saddle. The saddles have developed over time to be most suited to the particular discipline chosen by the rider.

http://www.equisearch.com/article/eqsaddleev619

I came across this and the bareback pads were the first to be used.
Some were a bit like my Barcelona in the other thread, I wonder if they were all hand tied as well.

The why, well my previous chap kept bucking in a treed. He was an xwide with a big shoulder. So I borrowed a Barefoot after riding in it first on someones pony. He didn't buck the whole ride, I bought one.
I just stayed treeless because of his shape, he was happy.

Now current lady is a xxwide, any treed will be a wh type without knee rolls, my treeless hasn't got knee rolls so as she is happy why change it.
Most people who have ridden in the Freeform like it as it puts you in the correct seat if you want that, has a soft cantle and twist so "feels" treed.
Other reason, my nearest saddler is crap, I wouldn't trust him to fit anything.
 
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nat17

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I have an idea it's around 12 stone, which is somewhere between the two. 100 kilos is nearly 16 stone, and at that weight you'd have to be careful to get the right horse even with a treed saddle.

I am going by the company websites, saying 100kg for some is fine, I dont agree on the 16 stone thing though, many horses are capable of that weight on the main, excluding obvious exclusions.
 

newforest

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One company says-

"suitable for riders up to 12 stone (168lbs) For heavier riders or when using this saddle with young horses we strongly recommend the use of a good correction/pressure relief numnah underneath the saddle. "

This is because with some you don't have much of a structure and a heavier weighted person would compress it. They are not saying it cannot be used. That's just one company saying that. I believe Freeform says 15 stone. Though I can't find this currently, so could be wrong/improvements have been done.
 
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