Zuzana lives in Saskatchewan County in Canada. She has several wide backed horses, Lusitano crosses and Warmbloods and rides to Grand Prix level with some. She trains with Mary Wanless and likes to “clearly feel her seat bones and ride with a fairly closed angle of her leg”.
Zuzana had recently bought a Tonishia but found it wasn’t wide enough for some of her horses and so she was on the hunt for another saddle! Although she and the horses love the Tonishia she would like her new saddle to be closer contact with a smaller block and less restricted seat.
We thought there were two options:
Option 1: we could adapt a Tonishia to greatly enhance her closeness to the horse and accommodate her leg position. We would do this by having less padding in the seat, cut the panels less full, custom flock the saddle with lambs wool which is lighter and softer than the Jacob’s wool used as standard by Ideal and reduce the bulk and depth of the block allowing her knee to pass under the block. The block could be on Velcro allowing her to ride with or without a block.
Option 2: choose a different saddle, our suggestion would be the Lynx Pro. This saddle is a fairly new addition to the Ideal range. It is a closer contact saddle with a smaller block, a less restricted seat, designed for the high level rider. It is a very forgiving fit and should be fine for the horses.
We exchanged lots of emails and Ian and Zuzana chatted on the phone and it came down to this!…….
“to summarise: a “modified Tonishia is a bit of a compromise between what is ideal for you and what we know works for the horses. But you know the saddle so it is not a leap in the dark. Alternatively, go for what I think you want, the Lynx Pro and I guess trust in us that it will work for the horses too!”
Zuzana went for the Lynx Pro and I am very happy to report dear reader that it did work! Here are a few things Zuzana wrote to us:
“I rode a few horses in the new saddle today – and love it! It feels as comfortable as my treeless – like I can forget there is a saddle there at all. The more open seat is great and the blocks are perfect!”
“Yes, the saddle’s working out great, love it. It is the best saddle I ever rode in ☺ . The horses are super comfortable in it and it stays centred with a loose girth”
“It’s been great dealing with you and you definitely have a customer for life!”
Zuzana is riding in her new saddle in the snow. It was -25 degrees!