Patrick Saddlery Fitting with Kate Ballard

  • 4/18/2019  −   4/20/2019
  • Open: 3/19/2019
  • Close: 4/16/2019

Kate Ballard with https://www.facebook.com/WestHillandSon/ and https://www.facebook.com/PatrickSaddlery1/ will be at Dancing Horse Farm for Patrick Saddle test rides. Kate will have many different Patrick Saddlery dressage and jumping demo saddles available for test rides. She will take measurements for custom orders while at our farm and she will adjust and work on current Patrick Saddlery saddles.

**When you sign up, please indicate if you are having an existing saddle adjusted/refitted, or if you are coming to test ride in demo saddles because the two require different length time slots.**

Jen Truett is proud to be an Ambassador for Patrick Saddlery. Of all the saddle companies available to her, she chose Patrick Saddlery because she was incredibly impressed with their 32 point measuring method that they use to create a 3D model of the horse's back in the shop to fit/flock the saddle so that it fits with no tweaking right out of the box. Also, the gullet channel width is measured down the length of the back to ensure the edge of the panels never extend beyond the longissimus dorsi onto the transverse spinous processes. The actual saddle trees are placed on the horse as part of the fitting process to find the tree that has the right width between the rails, angle, contour, and profile of the rails.

Probably what impressed Jen most about Patrick Saddlery is the fact that Kate and Patrick actually understand correct rider biomechanics and build their saddles to enhance the horse and rider's communication pathway. They are not interested in supporting the fad of long stirrups and riders leaning back behind the vertical which inhibits the horse's ability to do his job. Of course, their attention to building saddles to support correct body posture and joint angles immediately won her over as a biomechanics trainer and coach. Because of their understanding of biomechanics, they now work with many of our US Paraequestrian Team riders creating totally custom designed saddles specific for their needs! That alone says everything you need to know about the ability of these artisans to create a saddle to meet the needs of an able-bodied rider and horse.

These are some of Jen's primary rider fit considerations:
1. Correct vertical line-up (ear-shoulder-hip-heel)
2. Has to accomidate a 45 degree knee angle (so that thigh/knee/calf resembles the point of an arrowhead pointing straight forward)
3. The flap has to have a forward enough angle that allows the thigh to comfortably rest behind the thigh block without feeling restricted
4. The seat bones must point straight down in the deep spot of the seat which should be closer to the pommel than the cantle
5. The deep spot must be long enough to accomidate the rider's underneath to allow her to settle into it comfortably without having her ramus jammed against the rise up to the pommel or gluteus maximus smashed into the cantle.

Too many dressage saddles with overly vertical thigh blocks/flaps force the rider's hips into a too-open angle which forces the seat bones to point forward thus arching the back and making the rider lean the shoulders backwards and then the lower legs slide forward into a chair seat position to compensate.

Jen's areas of special interest for fitting saddles to horses are the following (this list is not exhaustive, just a few POI):
1. Ensuring back of wither clearance with the rider up while standing in stirrups; most people think to test at the front of the pommel for clearance, but not often do people have a friend on the ground push their hand in all the way to the back of the wither (especially an issue on long-withered horses) while they are standing at the top of the rise when there is maximum weight in the front of the saddle - this is when rubbing will happen if it's going to happen...keep in mind that ideally the rider should never use the stirrups as a weight bearing surface, this is just a saddle fit test.
2. Riders need to recognize that if the horse flinches in any way when pressure is applied to his back, he is sore and it is most likely from poor saddle fit, even if he has an expensive custom-made saddle.
3. The horse's trapezius (shoulder sling) muscle must have freedom of movement and space to lift and carry.
4. The saddle should sit balanced front to back and left to right so that even if the girth was loose, it really wouldn't matter much.
5. Every horse's back is limited by the length of their rib cage and saddles should never extend beyond the 18th rib because there's no support structure to carry the rider's weight.

Once Jen's saddles arrived, she could not find words to describe how she felt about them except to say that they are truly pieces of art. She is a VERY HAPPY customer and is confident that you, like her other clients who have already taken the plunge, will be too!

Organizer Notes

  • Jen Truett
  • jen@mydhf.com
  • 9375323108

**When you sign up, please indicate if you are having an existing saddle adjusted/refitted, or if you are coming to test ride in demo saddles because the two require different length time slots.**

Clinic Format:
Depending on if you are getting your existing saddle refitted or you are test riding in Patrick saddles, the format will be somewhat different. If you are getting your existing saddle refitted, Kate will want to see your saddle on your horse so she can evaluate the fit and then she will take it to her work space for tweaking. Once she's worked her magic, she'll come back with it, check the new fit on your horse, and if all passes her approval, you get to to ride in it to see if all three of you approve (Kate, you and your horse). If not, then more tweaking until it is perfect!

If you are there to test ride demo Patrick saddles, Kate will determine which trees are most appropriate for your horse's back shape and have you test ride in those saddles. Kate's demo saddles don't have attached thigh blocks to start with because she wants to see where your leg will fall naturally first, then you get to select from the vast assortment of shapes and sizes of blocks and the two of you will play with the positioning of the individual blocks until both legs feel comfortable and secure. Once you've selected the saddle that you and your horse like the best, Kate will begin the in depth 32-point measurement process and you get the fun job of picking your new saddle's leather and bling options!

Acceptance Policy:
*Limited Availability! Space reserved only when payment is received*

Go here for electronic Participant Release Form: https://form.jotform.com/81308695184161
And here for Auditor Release Form: https://form.jotform.com/81308020824144

Participant MUST submit their electronic release, Negative Coggins Certificate and pay full amount when registering, or email Lori@myDHF.com to explain when those documents will be sent her.

**Remember for spring clinics, have your spring vaccines completed at least a week prior to shipping so your horse's immune system isn't unnecessarily stressed

Refund Policy:
If you can’t participate for any reason, event organizer will attempt to fill your spot off the waiting list. If there is no waiting list, it is your job to find your own replacement. If no replacement rider is found, registration fees will not be refunded - NO EXCEPTIONS - because we still have to pay our hard-working clinician even if you are unable to participate and we are not independently wealthy.

Day stalls are provided at no cost as long as they are left clean
Overnight stabling:
If overnight stabling is desired, submit payment with registration fees
a. After 3 pm prior afternoon arrival allowed at no additional charge. Arrival before 3 pm will incur an additional stabling day fee.
b. DHF staff will feed participant-provided pre-measured hay/grain meals at barn feeding times and night check. Make sure to review your horse's feeding instructions with a DHF staff member upon your arrival and write the details on your stall card.
c. Please help us keep DHF neat and tidy by cleaning your stall, cross ties, parking lots, driveways, and dry lots.

We have limited availability to plug in trailers for camping onsite at $10 per night. We also occasionally have availability in our camper ($50 per night) or living quarters trailer ($35 per night). Please inquire about these directly with Jen@myDHF.com

Private Session Thursday


Private Session Friday


Private Session Saturday


  • Haul-In Fee$15.00
  • Day StallFREE
  • Full Stabling$25.00

Administrative Information

  • Ride Time: Ride Time: Clinic Schedule:
  • Trailer Direction: From the North:
    Interstate 75 S to Exit 36 – “Franklin/OH 123”
    Turn left on OH 123 – go 4.3 miles
    Turn left on OH 122 East – go 3.6 miles (the road changes names to Old 122 at the light at State Route 48)
    Turn left on Weisenberger Road – go 0.5 miles to mailbox #4080 on the right side
    From the South, using I71:
    Interstate 71 N to Exit #28 – “Lebanon/South Lebanon”
    Turn right onto State Route 48 – go 5.9 miles (the road changes names to 42 Bypass at 3.8 miles and again when it becomes Miller Rd at 5.5 miles)
    Turn right on Drake Road – go 2.2 miles
    Turn left on Old 122 – go 0.4 miles
    Turn right on Weisenberger Road – go 0.5 miles to mailbox #4080 on the right side
    From the South, using I75:
    Interstate 75 N to Exit #32 – “Middletown”
    Turn right on OH 122 East – go 7.3 miles (the road changes names to Old 122 at the light at State Route 48)
    Turn left on Weisenberger Road – go 0.5 miles to mailbox #4080 on the right side
    From the East:
    Interstate 71 S to Ext #45 – “Waynesville”
    Turn right on OH 73 West – go 8.7 miles
    Turn left on US 42 S – go 3.4 miles
    Turn right on Old 122 (at flashing light) – go 3.0 miles
    Turn right on Weisenberger Road – go 0.5 miles to mailbox #4080 on the right side
  • Change Policy: Changes are not permitted.
  • Refund Policy: No refunds.
  • Registration Method(s) Pay in full via Event Clinics