Are all leather saddles the same

23 Jun, 2021
Written bysylvain houry

When buying a new leather riding saddle, the question of its features arises. While on the surface they all seem to look the same, they do have some major differences. Their design and the parts that make them up obviously vary.
But the difference goes further, because a made to measure saddle will always be better than a mass-produced saddle. Arion HST, manufacturer of made to measure saddles, offers you to discuss the differences between the many equestrian leather saddles. Ready to learn more?


  1. Are all riding leather saddles designed the same?
  2. Are made to measure saddles and mass-produced saddles the same?
  3. Arion HST riding leather saddles: what do they have more of?

Are all riding leather saddles designed identically?

To know if two saddles are the same, you need to understand their design and how they work.

A saddle for every practice

When you know that there are specific types of saddles for each riding practice, you’d suspect that they can’t all be equal. They are even designed to enhance each type of practice.
jumping saddles, for example, focus on rider balance and comfort during exercise. The dressage saddles, on the other hand, improve the relationship between horse and rider. This, in turn, improves the communication between the two protagonists. The cross country saddles, finally, are the most versatile in the riding leather saddle market. They then perfectly combine the needs of balance with those of flexibility.

Variability of parts

To achieve several different types of riding saddles, extensive work is done on the parts that make them up. In other words, each type of saddle receives a specific contribution from a part. It is this particular contribution that makes the saddle unique. You may not know this, but show jumping saddles are made with seats that encourage the rider’s hips to engage. This does two things.
The first is improved rider balance before, during and after jumps. The second is a rapid improvement in the communication of commands from the rider to the horse. The horse can therefore better understand what the rider wants. The dressage saddle benefits from the extra-hollow seats for stability. The front blocks of this type of saddle also vary from the other models. As well as the saddle’s customization. As for the cross country saddle, it has a unique single quarter design. Who says all saddles are created equal?

Are custom and mass-produced designed saddles the same?

The other point is that mass-produced designed saddles are never worth the custom-made models. Let’s review this issue together.

Large-scale designed models

Mass-produced designed saddles are standardized and manufactured in large numbers. Put more simply, they are not designed on your measurements, let alone those of your horse. Very practical for beginners, they show their limits when the practice diversifies. They are often versatile, therefore not specialized for one type of practice. Available in leather, they can be of good quality, but also of less good quality.

The contribution of the custom-made riding leather saddle

The custom made to measure riding leather saddle will perfectly fit your horse’s measurements. They will be more comfortable to wear during training and competitions. Better yet, they will reduce the fatigue felt by your horse and can prevent back problems. For you, as a rider, it improves the feeling of your horse’s different movements.
It can be customized with finishes in accordance with your personality. They are made for one type of practice and receive parts especially for your own needs. By facilitating your training and improving your horse’s endurance, it accelerates your progress. Only a made to measure saddle can help you improve to a competitive level.

Arion HST riding leather saddles: what do they have that’s extra?

Used by world-renowned riders, Arion HST saddles have real added value. Focus on our unique expertise.

Leather artisans

Arion HST can count on its leather artisans, present in their workshop in southwest France, to design exceptional pieces. Our riding leather saddles thus benefit from a centuries-old craftsmanship. Designed with modern technology and the ancestral know-how of our craftsmen, our riding saddles are unique. They are made of vegetable tanned leather from a 100% French production line.
They can be made of calf leather, grained or nubuck, for unique aspects and finishes. Each piece is then singular because it is the fruit of a passionate manual work. Our leather craftsmen adapt the product to your needs, to the measurements of your horse and to your ambitions. Dream big with Arion HST!

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Continuous innovation

At Arion HST, we don’t rest on our laurels. We like to learn from your personal riding experience to design top-of-the-line riding leather saddles. That’s how our shoulder free panels were born, which free up your horse’s shoulders. You gain freedom of movement and experience a less tiring day.
The customization of the saddle flaps or the leather finish is aimed at one thing only: the well-being of the horse. Because without it, we would achieve nothing, we put its health above all else and make saddles that respect the animal. What if you changed the way you perceive riding with our personalized saddles?

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3 questions that summarize the characteristics of a good dressage saddle

How is a good dressage saddle created?

A good dressage saddle should be made to measure from the measurements of the horse and rider and from fine materials.

Arion HST dressage saddle: what’s new?

Compared to other dressage saddles, the models by Arion HST improve the feeling between horse and rider, for optimal communication.

What accessories go with a good dressage saddle?

For a dressage saddle to be optimal, it should be equipped with various accessories such as a bridle, high-end reins or even an elastic headpiece.

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