Product Review: Total Saddle Fit Shoulder Relief Girth

About a year ago, I spent a large portion of my savings on the perfect saddle for Tucker. This was immediately before the pandemic - great timing on my part! 🤣 I knew I wanted a top quality girth to go with this saddle, so turned to Total Saddle Fit. After about 8 months of using this girth, I can honestly say I am super impressed by the quality and design.

Review of the Shoulder Relief Girth by Total Saddle Fit

To start, when I first opened the box I was in love with the beauty of the leather workmanship. The girth truly is beautiful! Supple leather, lovely stitching - and the colors worked perfectly with my saddle. I got their brown leather dressage girth!

The cut of the girth really does offer wonderful elbow clearance, and Tucker seems to notice a difference from your typical girth. He's very loud about showing how he feels about things! After many trail rides, this girth has been soaked in sweat, ocean water, and mud. It cleans up great and looks brand new after a nice clean.

I use this setup on both Tucker and Trubee, and the pairing of the saddle and this girth has them both feeling super good and super forward! Since I mostly use this saddle for trail riding, the ring on the girth is ideal for their breast collar attachment.

How does it work?

I'm going to pull directly from the Total Saddle Fit website to explain:

The Shoulder Relief Girth™ actually changes the position and angle of the billets to prevent the saddle from interfering with the shoulder. The center of the girth is set forward to sit in the horse’s natural girth groove. While the sides of the girth are cut back to meet the billets 2 inches behind where the horse’s natural girth groove lies. This brings the billets from angling forward, to becoming perpendicular to the ground (in the case of a forward girth groove horse), which reduces the saddle’s tendency to be pulled forward into the shoulders.

Total Saddle Fit

Here are their illustrations to better demonstrate this for you:

Traditional Girth Saddle Placement
Traditional Girth Saddle Placement

Shoulder Relief Girth™ Saddle Placement
Shoulder Relief Girth Saddle Placement

The freeing of the shoulder for my horses means bigger movements and greater enjoyment from a good gallop! I have also jumped and done arena work with this girth, and while the saddle also makes for a better ride, I don't think the saddle would work so well without this girth. Trubee most recently enjoyed a 12.5 mile trail ride with lots of trotting and cantering up hills, and felt amazing the entire time.