| FlexEE Synthetic Treeless Saddle|
The Enlightened Equitation FlexEE saddle is a high quality synthetic saddle at an amazing price! Designed by well known Classical Seat trainer, Heather Moffett, the FlexEE saddle is built on a leather tree, a very old method of making a flexible saddle.
The saddle, as with all Enlightened Equitation saddles, past and present, is ergonomically designed to allow the rider, even a total beginner, to sit in the correct ear/shoulder/hip/heel alignment with ease. The stirrup bars are set back on the dressage model to enable a very deep thigh position, and the large velcroed on knee rolls (sold separately) that Heather has designed for this saddle, really assist with the deeper knee position. The velcro on the sweat flap of the GP saddle reaches far enough to permit the dressage knee rolls to be placed well back, in order to enable the dressage/flatwork seat with ease, ensuring that the saddle truly is 'General Purpose'. The bars are one inch further forwards on the GP to allow for shorter stirrups for jumping.
The saddles come in two models, Dressage and VSD (GP), currently in four sizes, 15", 16", 17" and 18". We have been making some signifcant improvements to the original FlexEE over the last few months and have now made the saddle closer to a treeless saddle in versatility of fit. We do not want riders to assume that this is a treed saddle and can be treated as such. The saddles now come in one width as they have no gullet plate, with a cut back head to accommodate higher withers where necessary. It will not bridge, conforming to the shape of the horse's back.
The panels have been designed to provide a wide weight bearing surface for the horse. These are moulded as in typical close contact panels and ensure absolute symmetry every time. The gullet is not as wide as on many saddles nowadays. Having the gullet too wide causes lateral instability, but the muscle is strongest at the point of attachment to the spinal processes, and the further apart the gullet, the weaker the muscle where the edges of the panels rest. So the gullet is 2.25" wide at the back of the saddle.
We have added soft velcro to the underside of the sweat flaps and designed shoulder pads, which make the panels into a French panel for horses needing shoulder support, velcroing in place, to lift the front of the saddle. These also give amazing extra support for the rider's legs and a feeling of additional security! The shoulder pads are sold separately but make a huge difference to the fit for horses with straighter shoulders, that need a French panel. Those with very wide, loaded shoulders are better without the pads, with the Owen panel, which is the basic panel in the saddle.
We have also velcroed the panels at the front, meaning that they can be moved slightly up or down, to adjust minutely to the shape of the horse instead of using different widths of gullet plate, giving more versatility. To this end, we do not recommend changing the panels for two different horses, as it can weaken Velcro over time, but to set it up for one horse and leave it, unless the horse changes shape.
Considerable attention has been paid to the comfort of the rider too, in that the seat is layered with Cushion EVA and latex, giving a very comfortable ride. The seams are far enough apart to allow the wider splay of the female seatbones to rest on the padding, and not end up on the hard slope of the tree, as happens with many saddles, when trying to sit in the deepest, most central part of the saddle! We have also lightly padded the skirts of the saddle giving additional rider comfort and made the 'waist' a little narrower, giving an even better feel of a 'twist' for the rider.
The seat and knee pads are covered with a Microfibre synthetic suede. This is the material used in the seats of expensive ranges of breeches, and we have chosen for its longevity. It is fully washable in breeches, so we know that even repeated wettings in climates such as the UK, will not affect its wearing qualities.
The stirrup bars made for this saddle are a solid one piece bar riveted on either side of the tree, relieving pressure. Sweat patterns under the saddles have been exceptionally even in all test horses used. The girthing is a three point system and assists in spreading pressure over the whole saddle.
The design of the dressage flap has the elegant lines of the EE Vogue SoftTree saddle, making a truly stylish saddle at a very affordable price. The cantle will feature a lacquered brass cantle plate with the EE torch logo, and the lacquered brass head nails, are also with the double EE logo, adding a smart finishing touch.
The GP flap is cut sufficiently wide at the back, in order to accommodate the thigh in the flatwork position. Many GP saddles do not take this into account, and the wider thigh especially, will overlap the back of the flap.
Saddles are available in a 15", 16", 17" and 18", in both Dressage and VSD (GP) styles, in Black or Brown.
As the sysnthetic version of the FlexEE saddle will be phased out, there will be a limited number of saddles in stock but orders can still be taken. Delivery time for saddles made to order is approximately 6 weeks.
Please contact us for advice on fitting.
Accessories available separately (knee blocks, shoulder shims, biothane synthetic leathers and saddle pads).
| FlexEE Leather Treeless Saddle Deluxe|
We can now take orders for the Leather version of the FlexEE saddle. Waiting time is 6-8 weeks to start with.
The leather version has an interchangeable gullet plate, which means that the width can be set as with a treed saddle, but for instance, if the horse is sold and the owner of the saddle has one of a very different width, a new gullet plate can be inserted to fit the new horse. The saddle however, can also be used without the gullet plate at all, so that it is still essentially fitting like a treeless saddle. How versatile is that?!! The gullet plate is simplicity itself to change, one screw, and a screwdriver all that is needed. It does not come down far enough to interfere with the flexible leather points, so the shoulders are not impeded in any way. The saddle will have a complete set of gullet plates with each saddle, unlike other makes where each plate is sold separately. The addition of the gullet plate, also means that traditional saddle fitters will be able to fit this saddle, should the buyer require it.
Because the FlexEE is flexible, the leather tree will self adjust to the rest of the horse, although padding will still be needed if the horse has atrophy or asymmetry.
The saddle is available in Dressage, VSD and GP versions, in black and brown, and even to special order, London tan.
In the Deluxe model, the flaps are of finest Sedgewicks English butt leather, and the seat and knee pads are of soft hide.
The saddles have flocked French (full) panels. For very wide horses, it will be possible to order a saddle with Owen half panels as a special order.
Please contact us for advice on fitting.