FAQs

The Total Contact Saddle will fit any horse of any size or age, from Shetlands to Shires and everyone in between. Many customers choose the Total Contact Saddle when their horse is hard to fit, and it’s especially popular for horses who change shape – those whose weight fluctuates seasonally, those who are still growing, flat backed horses and older horses. Both the long girth strap and short girth strap fits all size horses, it’s purely your preference if you want to use a normal girth or a dressage girth.

You can do any riding you’d do in any other saddle! We have riders use their TCS for anything and everything from pleasure hacking to endurance rides, jumping and dressage to cross country. It’s a very gentle saddle that’s brilliant when first bringing your horse into riding, and provides beautiful connection and bond between you and your horse – no matter what kind of riding you like to do together.

The simple answer is that no it doesn't. To ensure that the Total Contact Saddle is completely safe for your horses’ spine, the TCS has been professionally tested. Results show that there is less strain on your horse than would be experienced in any other saddle.


The saddle has also been seen by a wide range of 'back practitioners' and specialists including osteopaths, equine physio, McTImoney practitioners, Bowen and others. Many are now clients, and recommend the saddle to their own clients with confidence.


If you have a high-withered horse, we would recommend using your Total Contact Saddle in conjunction with our specially designed Ultimate Saddle Pad, which is specifically designed to reduce pressure on the withers.

The Classic Total Contact Saddle Pad is perfect, and specially designed to be used with your Total Contact Saddle. For riders who have a high-withered horse, or who would like a little more support, you might like to use a riser pad.

No! It’s no more likely to slide than a tree’d saddle.

We’d always recommend mounting from a block, regardless of what saddle you might be riding in. However, many customers mount their horses from the ground when riding with their Total Contact Saddle. Mounting from the ground isn’t quite as easy with a TCS as there’s no pommel or cantle to hold on to, but it’s certainly possible!

You can use any type of stirrup that suits your needs and fits your leathers. The stirrup bar attachment on the saddle allows for a range of stirrup leathers, and even western fenders, to be used. This includes the standard English style as well as Webbers. We suggest Webbers T Bar stirrups as they are flatter and create less bulk under the thigh.


The stirrup bars are further down the saddle than on a conventional saddle to eliminate unnecessary pressure, and as a result you will need stirrup leathers that are 4-5 holes shorter than you normally use. We recommend our T bar leathers which are perfect for your Total Contact Saddle. As a guide, we generally find that riders 5’0 to approx. 5’6 in height find the 24 inch webber the best length with still enough holes left for adjustment.


The Total Contact Saddle is supplied without stirrup leathers, but we sell a selection of branded leathers that match the saddle perfectly – you can see them here.

Clients compete in a wide range of activities in their TCS! Do check the rules before you enter, just to be sure that you are allowed to compete in a treeless saddle.

Yes! We’re pleased to offer the opportunity for our UK based customers to trial a saddle for two weeks. Your trial saddle will be brand new and the style and colour of your choice, made just for you. You’ll pay a refundable deposit of £150 plus a non-refundable postage charge of £15. If (when!) you decide to keep the saddle, we’ll send you an invoice for the balance. In the unlikely event that you decide the TCS is not for you, simply return it fully tracked in perfect condition and in the original packaging at your own expense. Kindly note that the trial saddle service is only available to UK customers at this time.

We’d be only too pleased to help. Please send your questions directly to lisa@total-contact.co.uk.