First Sensation Ride
Saddling for the first ride
The Sensation Ride™ does require a break-in time of about 10 hours riding before the optimal seat shaping occurs. When you first set the saddle on your horse, especially if you are also using a Skito saddle pad, you will notice that your girth seems quite short, and/or your saddle is sitting quite high off your horse’s back. Not to worry, this loftiness diminishes with use and your girth will fit better after the first ride.
Don’t hesitate to really tighten up your girth – there is a lot of “squish” in the saddle itself which will settle. Once you are mounted, your girth will be loosened up with your weight compressing the materials in your saddle and saddle pad. On the first few rides, you may need to re-tighten your girth after about 10 minutes of riding.
You may also notice that your seat is snug… best not to adjust the bolsters or seat until you have ridden a few rides.
What to expect for fitting
When you are mounted on your Sensation, you should be able to fit one finger + between your horse’s withers and the fore gullet of the saddle.
After a light ride, you should be able to see a defined dry area along the horse’s spine. If it is warm or you have ridden hard, the entire back may be wet. In this case, look for even dirt patterns on either side of your pad. Sweat can migrate, so when in doubt, look for an even dirt pattern.
If your horse has a very low wither and small shoulders, or is built downhill, a crupper may be necessary
If you notice your Sensation slipping backward, check the girth for tightness. A breastplate may be required also.
If you notice your Sensation slipping while mounting, ensure your girth is tight and padding is lined up under your saddle. You can also view our video on proper mounting techniques below to ensure the saddle is not being twisted while mounting.
What physical changes to expect
- If your horse had been experiencing a tight fitting saddle or a saddle which was bridging, he may give you a much more active ride the first few times out with the Sensation! As with any change in equipment or riding style which causes a change in usage of muscles, your horse may experience some soreness associated with exercising new muscles.
- If your horse’s body shape included a sunken-in area behind the shoulder, you may see a resurgence of muscle in this area. Most horse owners also report that their horse develops a livelier and longer stride.
- Riders discover that riding in the Sensation enhances their ability to ride balanced and centered, allowing your body to utilize leg, and core muscles more effectively.