Leading saddle manufacturer First Thought Equine now offers a personalisation service on all new saddles.
The leatherwork of all saddles may also be customised in the rider’s or sponsor’s colours; two-tone leather is popular, for example. Eventer Paul Tapner recently commissioned a striking red and black saddle in his country colours.
Key features of WOW Saddles:
• The only longitudinally rigid, but laterally flexible tree – offers greater shoulder freedom
• Large bearing surface
• The widest range of interchangeable width fittings: XN-8X
• Features Flair air bag flocking; a flexible, gaseous bearing surface that increases pressure distribution over the horse’s back & provides shock absorption.
Call (44) 1227 831614 for stockists or visit www.wowsaddles.com.
Korrector is a revolutionary new saddle pad which using air and foam technology, can be adjusted by the rider to give full day to day control of the fit of their saddle on one or more horses. If you haven’t already used the Korrector then these reasons will explain why we think you should…
Korrector benefits the rider by…
- Allowing the rider to adjust the pad for seasonal changes in the horse’s shape
- Absorbing jarring shock to the rider’s lower back
- Giving the rider the means of using a saddle on more than one horse
- Allowing the rider to adjust the balance of the saddle front to back
- Allowing the rider to adjust the balance side to side so distributing the riders weight centrally
- Allowing diagonal adjustment when the horse is asymmetric
- Can be used with English, Western and Spanish style saddles
- Bags can be removed and replaced fully inflated for washing purposes
Korrector has been proven by independent testing to give your horse greater comfort by…
- Dispersing the pressure points of the saddle
- Increasing the bearing surface of the saddle
- Continually flexing and moulding to the horse’s shape allowing the back and shoulder muscles to work unrestricted
- Absorbing impact shock from the rider
- Alleviating pressure across the horses spine and wither area
It all started with the WOW Competitor Range. For the first time one could buy a traditional looking saddle and by buying different components, alter all of its’ characteristics to suit different horses, riders and disciplines. WOW is the world’s first modular saddle. The seat, panels and flaps of the WOW Competitor Range are all available separately, so you can easily change component parts. When they are combined they make a saddle whose performance for the horse and the rider is unbeatable!
The WOW Competitor Range offers…
Flexible Carbon Fibre Tree. Using the latest materials to give the ultimate in flexibility and strength. Lateral Flexion allows the horse to rotate the scapula fully under the saddle without interference, whilst also proving a very big bearing surface and hence very low pressures on the horse’s back.
PPS™ “Pointless Panel System” The unique shape of the tree with no conventional points and an extended floating plate on the panel top produces a bearing surface larger than a western saddle!
Double Stirrup Bars Allows the rider to ride with both a straighter leg position for schooling and a more forward leg position for hacking or jumping disciplines.
Adjustable Tree Width The width of the tree can be adjusted by the rider using the unique Flexi-Head™ in conjunction 11 interchangeable headplate width fittings from extra narrow to 8X Wide.
Interchangeable Panels Enables you to change the panels of your saddle to a design more suitable for a different horse with different back profile i.e. higher or lower gusset height
Double Wishbone Girthing A unique girthing arrangement centers the pull of the girth to keep the saddle still and stable on the horses back.
Interchangeable Flaps Extra flaps can be purchased and these are interchangeable allowing the rider to remove one flap and replace with one for a different discipline flap i.e. dressage to jumping
Two position flaps All flaps have two fixing positions so you can change the flap’s angle forward or back as well as removing them totally. This allows for riders with longer leg/thigh length.
Choice Of Seat Designs Flat to deep with differing degrees of softness of support.
Anatomically Designed Seat Allowing the rider to achieve total closeness to the horse with their thigh lying flat against the horses side.
Choice Knee Blocks Fixed Blocks or Moveable Blocks. moveable blocks allows the rider to adjust the knee support.
Single web stirrup leathers included so there is no buckle under the rider’s leg and Flair – The Adjustable Air Flocking System is fitted as standard. Flair allows the panel to be adjusted to and continuously mould to a horses changing/moving shape. There is a choice of colours and styles of leather, stitching and facings as well as flaps, panels and seat allows the rider to customize the saddle to their own preferences.
The WOW Club Dressage shares the same tree as the Competitor and has the same range of headplate fittings. The WOW Club Dressage cannot change flaps or seat and is just a dressage saddle. The Panels of the Club are inter-changeable and come fitted with a foam panel as standard, this can be upgraded to Flair. The colours for the WOW Club Range are limited to black and brown.
The WOW Club Dressage still features the following…
Flexible Carbon Fibre Tree
PPS™ “Pointless Panel System”
Double Stirrup Bars
Adjustable Tree Width
Double Wishbone Girthing
Anatomically Designed Seat
Many people ask us what Flair actually is, so here goes…
Flair is a system of four air bags, which are incorporated into your existing saddle panel, two at the front, and two at the rear. Flair air bags can be fitted to all styles of saddle i.e. Dressage, Jumping, General Purpose and Endurance etc.
The air bags surround a foam insert which makes the air displace in such a manner that the saddle panel maximises its bearing surface on the horses back.
The bags are adjusted via two valves that are fitted under the skirt of the saddle. The adjustments are made whilst the rider sits on the horse, the whole process taking a matter of minutes. The saddler is able to balance the saddle perfectly both side to side and front to back even if the horse has uneven muscle development.
So why use Flair?
The majority of training problems relating to the control, balance and direction of the horse are caused by the horse’s discomfort in the area immediately under the saddle. The problem with saddles is the hardness and unevenness of the panel. All flocking materials over time become unevenly compacted, so creating both high pressure points and areas where the panel may not touch the horses back.
A pressure as low as 1½ lbs. per square inch will in time damage minor blood vessels in both the skin and muscle leading to signs of bruising, hair loss and eventually muscle wastage. Pressure on or pinching of the withers directly affects the muscles of the shoulder, causing shortening of the horse’s stride and in many cases, difficulty when moving down hill. Soreness or restriction of the back muscles makes it more difficult for the horse to engage his quarters and so to come on the bit.
Flair creates a gaseous and totally flexible layer in your saddle. This removes pressure points and increases the sensitivity of the horse to your lower back aids whilst also providing shock absorption for the horse when jumping or engaged in sitting trot (gases can be compressed whilst liquids, gels and solids cannot).
Flair allows your horse to move naturally as the muscles of the back and shoulder are no longer restricted by your saddle’s panel.
So now you know! To find out more visit www.fteltd.co.uk
WOW Saddles sponsored rider Philip Spivey is back from the Atlantic Tour in Portugal and gives us the lowdown on his trip!
“We had a mixed tour in Portugal. The younger horses jumped very well. The 5 year old, called Darya I Nur, was placed every weekend and then in the finals. The seven year old, Smirnov, was also very good and having been placed every weekend he was 9th in the 7 year old finals. I was very pleased with both of them!
The older horses also went well, Virginia 188 had a couple of placings but lost a shoe when we first got there so her tour got better as it went on. Zarina got better and better with some great placings but unfortunately Pinto du Lusse got colic the first weekend we were there so had to be shipped off to a clinic and then back to his owners (who happen to live in Spain) to recuperate. He is doing well now though and on the road to recovery so will be back soon. All in all I was pleased, apart from the poor sick horse, but particularly with the young horses as they learnt a lot.
Going forward we have some clinics and demonstrations coming up, including one at Houghton Hall where WOW are sponsoring the H Factor. The horses who went to Portugal are having a bit of a break and then we will start the next campaign mid April with Addington Manor for their Spring Classic Show, then on to Windsor, Herts County, Suffolk County and after that a trip to France!”
Proceedings got underway on Wednesday 6th March for WOW Saddles sponsored rider, Richard Davison, as Myerscough College hosted it’s Premier League Show, with classes up to Grand Prix.
Richard made his return to the scene following the sale of his prolific ride Hiscox Artemis to Swiss Under 25 rider Phinie von Bremen earlier this year and dazzled the judges with a plus-70% win in the Grand Prix with 12 year old Holstein gelding, Hiscox Aliano. This horse had already shown much promise at Small Tour under Richard’s wife, Gillian Davison, and now proves to be one to watch!
Here is the fabulous write up featured in Horse & Hound magazine the following week…
Have you heard all the talk about Flair, but still don’t really know what it is all about? Or what it is that makes it like no other saddle product on the market? We think it s revolutionary!
Simply put, Flair is Air Flocking. Yes, the panels of your saddle are filled with air!
Flair is a system of air bags designed to replace the flocking in all conventional saddles, new or secondhand, to provide a soft, flexible and even bearing surface without pressure points.
Fitting air bags does not require any modification to the saddle, its appearance will not change. Once fitted, Flair air bags do not need adjustment or special maintenance unless your horse changes shape. Then simple adjustment by your saddler is all that is required. Some horses develop muscle rapidly with the Flair system and have outgrown their tree size
Flair gives your saddle a constant flexible layer of shock absorbing air as thick as your saddle’s panel.
Flair increases the sensitivity to aids from your lower back and seat. By removing any saddle discomfort the horse can clearly focus on your aids.
At this time of year your horse often changes shape, whether it be through weight fluctuations or muscle development as they get fitter and stronger in preparation for the season ahead. This can make saddle fitting a constant challenge, however First Thought Equine, manufacturers of the WOW saddle, have introduced the Korrector Air Saddle Pad which can help!
Even when a saddle fits a horse well, over the course of a year, changes in diet or level of fitness will result in changes of muscle structure, and the shape of the horse’s back. Therefore a saddle that originally fitted well may no longer fit the horse. Many people find it difficult to get a saddle fitter to visit to re-flock or adjust the saddle, and need to resort to saddle pads to ‘take up’ the difference.
Most saddle pads cannot be adjusted, and the majority assume that the saddle does not fit throughout its length. This is not normally the case, as most saddle fitting problems only occur at the front.
Korrector has four air bags for adjustment and a foam sheet for shock absorbency. You only use those pairs of bags required to correct the saddle, so cutting down on unnecessary bulk under the saddle. Korrector can be used with four air bags to create a shock absorbing pad under the whole saddle panel. The bags can then be adjusted so there is more air in the front or back bags to balance the saddle front to back or even side to side. Korrector can also be used with just the two front air bags to create a front riser pad or just the two back airbags to create a back riser pad.
In developing the WOW Saddle we asked ourselves this question… what does your horse want from a tree?
The answer is a means to distribute the rider weight symmetrically and evenly from the 7th to the 18th vertebrae.
This means there should be no flexion in the tree front to back. A lot of companies purport to having flexibility in their trees. If there is flexion along the spine of the horse then this will allow the riders weight to bear unevenly or put another way, to concentrate the pressure directly under the riders seat bones over a area no bigger than 3-5 vertebra. This is not a good situation and is verging on removing the tree altogether which gives even worse results in concentrating pressure under the rider seat.
However, as a horse moves, its’ shoulders need to find more space as the scapulas rotate back under where the tree sits. The answer is to let the head of the tree swing from side to side as the alternate shoulders rotate back under the tree.
In other words, a horse would want a saddle that is longitudinally rigid and laterally flexible in the head. This is exactly what the WOW tree provides. By the use of a “Y” bar made from rigid Carbon Fibre that is as strong as steel embedded in the body of the tree we have created a framework that will move with the horse not against it!
The WOW tree is patented and state of the art. It performs like no other tree for both horse and rider. WOW is the only tree that incorporates Lateral Flexion. If you want to feel the benefits for yourself then contact us to find out more…
We would like to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from the whole team at First Thought Equine. Thank you to our customers for their loyal support over 2012, and we hope 2013 is happy, healthy and prosperous for all.