NOTE: My time has been very crunched recently with the growth of Ghost Saddles and dealing with an injury requiring long term physical therapy plus lhoping for a big ride season with 3 horses. So I have made the decision to back off from Bua saddles. I still love the saddles and how great they are for horses and riders, so I'm always happy to answeer questions. At this point I'm down to 2 saddles (one slightly used, one new) and multiple flap options. The new saddle will be priced at $2700 and the demo saddle at $2500. Extra flaps will be reduced to $500 while avalable. All are black except one set of brown Jump flaps. There are a couple people on the east coast much more knowledgeable ini equine sports other than endurance and can certainly help you out!
Bua (Gaelic for Victory) saddles are an innovative Irish made saddle designed to fit the horse and human separately, distribute weight evenly and reduce impact through all types of riding. The cantilevered design makes independent panels to move with the horse and a comfortable seat for the rider. Rider impact to the horse is reduced/removed via a ratchet system to either stiffen or free the interaction from the panels. From ExecReview.com:
"The tree of the new saddle is a piece of thermoplastic composite (carbon fiber) bent into a U-shape, a cantilever design, which effectively separates the unit into two different saddles. One part of the saddle is customised for the rider and the other side of the curved tree is designed to fit the horse’s back, allowing balance for the rider and comfort for the horse. There is a natural suspension as the two parts are joined at the front."
The flaps can be changed by the customer from dressage, general purpose, jump, and jump w/o blocks.There are two stirrup positions and a wide girth rigging for saddle stability. Have fun with the color combinations or stick with the always elegant black and browns! Priced moderately, your horse will love the freedom to move his shoulders and you'll love the ability to buy one saddle instead of two or three. Check out this link for videos on changing out the flaps and adjusting the suspension.
~ Reviews ~
~ Conversation ~
~ Rider comments ~
"The Bua is a real game changer. A huge step forward to providing a more comfortable and more flexible saddle to benefit the horse and alleviate many of the back issues we see increasingly within our industry."
- Sam Dempsey, D&L Performance Horses, Irish International event rider, CIC3
"The first thing that struck me when sitting in the saddle was the overall balance and comfort it provided. The saddle compressed as I sat down in it, then immediately felt stable.
...I was impressed with the amount of feel that the saddle allowed the rider to have. It was extremely easy to gauge all four hoof-beats of the horse and have a good connection with the horse's back via the saddle interface. It was also aparent that the horse could more easily pick up on the cues of the rider's seat aids compared with more conventional flock packed saddles with a standard tree.
... The Cantilevered Saddle was very comfortable to canter and jump in, offering superb reduction in concussion on the horse's back if the rider sat heavily or lost balance and fell back onto the saddle."
- Jody Hartstone, New Zealand Grand Prix Champion Dressage Rider, International Coach of Equine Learning Theory