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Bates Dressage Saddle

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Bates Dressage Saddle

The Bates Dressage Saddle combines a class look in fine European leather, plus innovative performance features to ensure horse comfort and a balanced rider position. 

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Item #: X1-150061
List: $2,195.00
Dover's Price:
$1,975.00
Ships in 2-5 Business Days
Helpful Information
How to Size a Dressage Saddle to a Rider
How to Clean
Our Guarantee

Beneath the traditional lines and elegant appearance, the Bates Dressage saddle offers high performance as innovative features work to ensure optimal horse comfort and a balanced rider position. Crafted in fine, hand-selected European leather, it boasts a seat with a narrow twist and a greater width behind for increased support of your optimal dressage position. Molded knee inserts gently support your leg.

This dressage saddle is built on an Elastiflex tree and with quilted panel points. It lets you customize your comfort with the Adjustable Ergonomic Stirrup Bar and the Adjustable Flexibloc system. The EASY-CHANGE Fit Solution allows for a customized fit on your horse, while weight distribution is achieved through the CAIR® Cushion system in generous performance panels. The Y-Girthing system provides saddle stability.  Use a Phillips screwdriver #3 to adjust the tree of the saddle. 

Description of features:

Elastiflex tree has a rigid head to maintain clearance over your horse’s withers. Lateral flexion works with your horse’s muscular movements in every stride. Precision engineered to be lightweight, symmetrical and ultra-durable, this tree is guaranteed against breakage for the lifetime of the saddle (deemed to be 10 years under normal riding conditions).

Adjustable Ergonomic Stirrup Bar for effortless horse and rider alignment allows you to alter the positioning of the stirrup bar, resulting in complete control over your preferred riding position.

Adjustable Flexibloc system enables you to customize the support offered for an individualized riding position.

EASY-CHANGE Fit Solution is comprised of the EASY-CHANGE Gullet system and the EASY-CHANGE Riser system. It offers a total saddle fitting solution for absolute horse comfort and your peace of mind.

Select the optimal gullet width in the EASY-CHANGE Gullet system for your horse’s current shape and muscling. Make adjustments within the saddle panels for optimal balance and clearance with the EASY-CHANGE Riser system. All adjustments are measurable, symmetrical and completely reversible, ensuring total confidence in the saddle’s ability to be custom fitted to your horse’s changing shape for optimal comfort and performance.

CAIR cushions within generously sized panels offers performance advantages over traditional panel fillings in the way they distribute your weight and cushion your horse’s back. In distributing weight, air cushions continually mold to mirror your horse’s individual conformation and working muscles. They ensure a close, even contact over a much larger weight-bearing area and help eliminate instances of pressure points.

In cushioning your horse’s back, the dynamic nature of the air ensures it works in synergy with your  horse’s muscles, rather than your horse’s muscles working against a static medium. Additionally, air provides the ultimate shock absorption, reducing instances of trauma to your horse’s muscles in work.

The large saddle panels maximize the weight-bearing surface on your horse’s back. The optimized area results in a reduction in pressure per square inch. Coupled with a wide and even channel, the  panel design supports your horse’s working muscles and allows optimal movement in his shoulders.

Y-Girthing system enables customized adjustments for your horse’s individual conformation. It maximizes saddle stability as it secures the saddle from both front and rear.

QUICK-CHANGE Girth Points offer peace of mind that the girth points can be fitted to factory standard throughout the life of the saddle. This girth system also allows customization by a saddler or saddle fitter. The unique design ensures the girth points are highly durable and ultra slim-profile, which supports a close contact feel and increased comfort for horse and rider.


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Manufacturer Restricted Price Product: Count on Dover Saddlery for the best quality, value and price possible. However, some of our manufacturers restrict advertised selling prices and prevent us from advertising discounts. For other items, some manufacturers allow us to offer and advertise a discount on a limited basis. Therefore, some products are not eligible for discounts.




Guidelines for Sizing a Dressage Saddle to a Rider
For dressage, you need to sit deeply in a neutral, balanced position on your horse. A saddle that fits you and your horse well will make achieving a good position easy. Long flaps on dressage saddles encourage a long stirrup length to maximize your ability to keep a relaxed leg in full contact with your horse. Thigh blocks designed to support your legs- long, short, large, small, external or under the flap -and the depth of the seat, are matters of personal preference.

The "twist" of a saddle is also a personal choice, though it is an aspect of saddle tree design intended to accommodate the horse's shape more than the rider's. The twist is located behind the pommel at the front of the saddle's seat. The front of any saddle tree has a steep angle to accommodate a horse's withers, while the back of the tree has a flatter angle to accommodate a horse's back. The twist occurs where the bars of the tree "twist" to form the transition between the front and back of the tree. The width of the strip of leather over the twist does not necessarily indicate the width of the twist.

If you sit in a saddle and feel like you're sitting on a wide board, then the twist is too wide for your build. This could force you into a chair seat position, which puts you behind the horse's movement. A twist appropriately sized for you will allow your legs to hang down softly. If a twist is too narrow for you, your thighs won't feel supported. A professional saddle consultant can be sure that your ideal twist is appropriate for your horse's build.

Consider these guidelines as you look for your perfect fit in a dressage saddle.

  • Hip to knee length determines where your knee and leg fit in accordance to the angle and point of the flap. Look to fit this part of your leg first. The rotation and size of the saddle flap should complement the angle of your leg. Your knee should hit at the top point of the flap with at least two fingers to spare.
  • Saddle seat size affects your comfort, ability to move and effectiveness in seat aids. Ignore the seat size measurement of the saddle and work with what actually fits your body. Every manufacturer's saddle seat sizing will feel different. Most saddles require that you fit between three to four fingers (a hand's width) behind your bottom and the tip of the cantle. If you feel confined in a deep-seated saddle, then try the next seat size up.
  • Flap length is less important than the way the flap shape complements the angle of your leg. As a general guideline, the flap will fall only about a third of the way down your calf. The goal in determining flap length is to avoid having the edge of the saddle flap catch on the top of your tall boot or half chap.
  • Riding style, your own personal preference, for any one factor of the saddle and your position as determined by your unique physical build is always important. If you feel confined or restricted in a saddle, or conversely, do not feel supported, try another saddle.


How to Clean Your Leather Saddle
Care for your saddle properly to ensure it can provide years of service.

After every ride, wipe perspiration and footing dust from your saddle with a barely moistened rag. Pay particular attention to removing grime from the billet straps. These critically important straps are the most likely area of your saddle to wear first as they are exposed to horse sweat and are always placed under great pressure during use. They may require more frequent conditioning than other parts of your saddle.

Once weekly, clean and condition all leather surfaces of your saddle using either the traditional glycerin soap method or a specially formulated leather cleanser. The economical glycerin soap method of cleaning involves wiping your saddle with a moistened sponge to remove dust and dirt. Rub hard to remove grime. When the leather feels smooth and clean, rub a nearly dry sponge or rag against the glycerin soap bar. Apply a thin layer of glycerin soap (no suds during this step) to your leather to seal its pores and keep it soft, but not sticky.

Newer methods of cleaning your saddle involve convenient and easy-to-use tack cleaning and conditioning products; follow the manufacturers' label instructions on any product you choose. Almost every tack manufacturer has a recommendation or product preference for cleaning and conditioning its saddles, and some manufacturers produce their own. Additionally, some suede, buffalo or patent leather may require special care according to the saddle maker. Always follow saddle manufacturer's guidelines when considering commercial leather cleaners and conditioners.

One-step leather cleaners also condition your leather as you wipe away grime. Two-step cleaners usually advise following cleansing with a conditioner that will soften and protect the leather.