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RigidFree™ SMART™ saddles offer excellent performance both short and long-term. With carefully developed, patented technology and hard-wearing, high density materials, there is no reason why a SMART™ saddle cannot – and will not – continue to improve your horse’s comfort and performance under saddle longitudinally. So, why do some saddle fitters claim to have experienced horses developing issues 2 – 3 months after moving into a RigidFree™ SMART™ saddle? The answer is simple and will be obvious to any experienced saddle fitter: Horses change shape.
We all know that horses are constantly changing shape and, whilst a SMART™ saddle can flex to accommodate these changes in shape, that does not mean that the fit does not need to be reviewed. What’s more, it is no coincidence that peer-reviewed research* indicates that saddle fit should be checked every 3 months, as it is probable that the back shape will change sufficiently during this period to render a refit necessary. Adding that a fully flexible SMART™ saddle encourages healthy back muscle development and positive postural changes, it is no wonder that a SMART™ saddle may need rebalancing after 2 – 3 months of ridden work in a RigidFree™, flexible SMART™ saddle.
But, before you start panicking that you might need to invest in another saddle at this point in time, worry not! The flexible SMART™ saddle can simply be refitted using recommended shims and balance pads (if necessary) to ensure that you and your horse can continue to enjoy your SMART™ saddle without any interruption to your training schedule.
"He’s now completely different to look at; his back is clearly stronger, the dips behind his withers are filling in, and each time he changes shape, a SMART™ Advisor has been available to assist us if needed.” - Sally Johnson, SMART Saddle Customer
‘’The SMART™ Advisor was so helpful, I had a concern about the fit and she offered solutions over the phone and arranged to come out to review the saddle. Pictures of his back had been taken at the initial visit so we could see the difference and how the horses back muscles had developed in 4 weeks. The saddle balance pads were tweaked and now the saddle fits his new shape perfectly.’’ - Gillian Kettles, SMART Customer
If you think that your horse has changed shape and your SMART™ saddle fit needs reviewing, you can contact your local SMART™ Advisor or the team at SMART™ Saddles HQ for help and advice at any time:
*A longitudinal study of back dimension changes over 1 year in sports horses. Line Greve, Sue Dyson