Manufacturer: Collegiate (View all products by Collegiate)
Model: Alumnus (View all Alumnus reviews)
Category: All Purpose Saddles
Purchase: I had been having a lot of saddle problems, so I asked my neighbor who I knew had a saddle. She gave me her saddle to try for a week and it was a little wide for my horse, but otherwise fit fine with a riser pad in front. I bought the saddle from her for $100. It was used with a few water stains but otherwise pretty nice.
Likes: I like how this saddle is very secure. MY girl is very green, just starting on her canter. She often likes to try cantering without my command now that she's getting stronger and more confident and she doesn't have the best brakes yet. Sometimes I need to turn her in a tight circle or sit through an unexpected turn or jolt. The high cantle is always there to catch my bum. :D The panels are also very soft. Not too hard like the stubbens or other saddles like that. I felt that it was very cushioning to my horse's back.
Dislikes: The leather was not the most high quality, yet it easily got water stains and sweat stains. I didn't really like that the knee pads were suede. They did give a bit more grip, but it's a hassle to make sure they stay clean. But what I didn't like the most was that the saddle pitched me really far forward which caused my little mare to get nervous and unbalanced and either trip or stop. She always knows where her feet are and doesn't usually trip up. When I canter on her I need to sit back and keep my weight off of her front end. It's a little bit hard to do that because of how low the saddle fits in the front.
Quality: The construction is very nice all of the stitching is in tact except right here my stirrups leathers rub. This saddle is mid-range, but the quality of something much more expensive. Despite the staining issues with the leather, it is durable and easy to ride in all the time or bang around on young horses.
Summary: I really love this saddle. It makes me feel nice and secure on my horse. Although I prefer close contact saddles, this isn't hard to get my legs around my horse and give her certain commands. It has nice panels for the horse's comfort and they also absorb shock for you too. I'm sad to sell this saddle, but it's sadly too small for me and interferes more than it should. If I can find a way to keep it and get a new saddle as well, I will in a heartbeat.
Usefulness Rating: 2.5 out of 5.
6 reader(s) voted.
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