The Illustrated Guide to Saddle Fitting (Pre-Order)

An Easy Visual Reference to Ensure Health, Comfort, and Performance for You and Your Horse

Beverly Harrison



Coming in September 2024

An engaging handbook chock full of all the right information for fitting English saddles to both horse and rider, ensuring comfort, health, and performance at a glance.

If horseback riders could do one thing that would save them money, ensure their horse’s health and performance, and help them ride better (and feel better afterward), it would be assuring that their saddle fits their horse correctly, and that it is suitable for their own body and desired activities. Unfortunately, most riders don’t have access to or the money to pay experienced saddle fitters, who can analyze their equipment and help them determine whether the fit is passable or problematic. This means that a large number of riders just “hope for the best” with what they have, or struggle to grasp lengthy explanations of optimal fit and how to achieve it. And, in the end, a large number of horses suffer the consequences.

Beverly Harrison started as a rider herself, and when she opened a tack shop, she quickly noticed the need for someone to guide horse owner’s in choosing a new saddle or refitting an older one. In order to be better informed for her customers, she became a Qualified SMS Saddle Fitter, and she made it her mission to help educate anyone involved with horses: 4-Hers, backyard riders, competitors, veterinarians—you name them, she’s probably taught them.

Harrison figured that her educational efforts would benefit from colorful visual aids to engage her students. And so, a handbook full of her own delightful hand-painted illustrations was born. Readers easily gain a basic understanding of the different parts of the saddle, how they work and how they should fit, as well as what the addition of a rider means to it all. Topics include:

  • Terminology and saddle construction
  • Basic anatomy and physiology of horse and rider relative to the saddle
  • Safety of materials and condition
  • Step-by-step evaluations of fit for both horse and rider
  • Instructions for creating a paper template
  • Indicators of fit under saddle
  • Impacts of girths and saddle pads
  • Repair and maintenance advice

A saddle is part of most horses’ lives. It is anything but a benign piece of equipment: its placement on the horse’s back—a vital source of strength and locomotion—and its location between horse and rider, means that it can have either a negative or a positive impact on everything from health to performance. Harrison’s book makes it easy for all of us, wherever we are and whatever we like to do with our horses, to ensure our saddles are not the source of a problem, only an additional means of connection and communication. She empowers us by showing what is right, what is wrong, and what the next steps should be. And in the end, our horses are happier, healthier, and better able to do what we ask of them.


Additional Information

Author: Beverly Harrison

Format: Hardcover spiral

Page Count: 144

Illustrations: 50 color illustrations

ISBN: 9781646012541

By Beverly Harrison

Beverly Harrison had a place in the horse community as a rider and extended her role in 1997 when she began a business in Boulder County, Colorado, called The Tack Collection. She quickly determined she wanted to make a positive difference in how riders choose saddles for the diverse horse population, and so she pursued an education with the Society of Master Saddlers, UK (SMS), who honored her with the title of Qualified SMS Saddle Fitter from the year 2000 to the present. Harrison now specializes in the modification, repair, and customization of saddles for her clients—both human and horse. She offers educational clinics and seminars to all levels of riders and professionals, including at veterinary clinics and universities, and has trained a number of apprentices while continuing her own education through world-class experts in the field. Harrison’s primary passion has been, and is, to spread tried-and-true tack fitting information in a way that helps both horse and rider (