10 Best Reining Saddles Actually Worth the Money (2023)

The thrill of reining, from the spins to the sliding stops, makes it one of the most popular western riding disciplines.

Those maneuvers in the reining pattern require a strong, steady seat in the saddle, and the best reining saddles help by providing stability and balance through stirrup placement and the lower swell, cantle, and horn.

We Recommend

top reining saddle

Best for Reining
Billy Cook Pro Reiner

reining saddle

Best Money Can Get
Circle Y Ohio Reiner

best reining saddle

Best for Women
Crates Ladies

Best Reining Saddles

1. Billy Cook Classic Pro Reiner 6000

top reining saddle

Billy Cook makes some fantastic stock saddles, and the Classic Pro Reiner 6000 is a gem that centers the rider while providing maximum comfort for the horse. This saddle is popular in competition because of its precise seat sizing, forward-hanging stirrups, and beautiful craftsmanship. The hand-tooling and soft leather indicators of the quality.

There are limitations on the model and the silver tips and coloring aren’t always available on every saddle. It does come in a distinct hot oil color in the 16-inch seat size. The Quarter Horse bars, and tree fit most stock breeds so the saddle can be used on multiple horses.

What We Liked 

  • The stirrups hang forward for balance and bracing on the sliding stops
  • Half-seat sizes in 15.5-inch and 16.5-inch are available for precise fit
  • The Quarter Horse bars, and tree fit most stock breeds
  • Quality reining saddle with the craftsmanship and hand-tooling guaranteed from the Billy Cook brand
  • Distinct hot oil color available

What Can Be Improved 

  • The silver tips aren’t standard on all saddle models
  • The hot oil color isn’t available in the 15-inch seat size, only in 16-inch saddles
  • The front cinch is sold separately at an additional cost

Type: Reining Saddle
Weight: 36 lbs
Seat Size: 15.5’’ to 16.5’’
Gullet With: 6.5’’ to 8’’

2. Circle Y Ohio Reiner Reining Saddle 

reining saddle

Circle Y is known as a reining saddle brand and the new Ohio Reiner is at the top of the class. The design will help any competitor have the best ride possible, from the balanced seat pocket to the forward swinging fenders that stabilize the rider on a sliding stop. A huge advantage is the 17.5” seat size which isn’t available in many other saddles.

Those purchasing this saddle may want to have a training saddle as well, as this one is too nice for the wear and tear of everyday work. It’s the best reining saddle on the market and will elevate your ride to the next level.

What We Liked 

  • Fenders will swing forward during a sliding stop
  • Beautiful craftsmanship and antique conchos
  • Comes in a regular or wide tree to fit a wide variety of horses
  • The seat size goes up to a 17.5” – a rare find in any western or reining saddle
  • Rich chocolate color stands out in the show ring

What Can Be Improved 

  • Designed for showing – you won’t use it in the elements or training
  • Requires dedicated time to keep it clean with all the tooling
  • The D-rings on the front of the saddle are small 

Type: Reining Saddle
Weight: 33 lbs
Seat Size: 15.5’’ to 17.5’’
Gullet With: 6.5’’ to 8’’

3. Crates Hand-Tooled Ladies Reining Saddle 

best reining saddle

No one argues that men and women are built differently, yet for years, saddles were manufactured the same, despite the obvious differences. This saddle is designed specifically for women with a narrow ground seat and smaller seat sizes, as well as a balanced pocket. Ladies will feel the difference riding in the Crates Hand-Tooled Ladies Reining Saddle.

Similar to other reining saddles, the rigging and saddle structure prevent close contact with the horse, but this disadvantage is negligible on a well-trained and responsive mount. It’s easy to find the perfect fit for any stock horse with the variety of tree and gullet sizes available, as well as saddle colors.

What We Liked 

  • Centers rider in a balanced seat pocket with a narrow ground seat
  • Three gorgeous colors to choose from, matching the coat of any horse
  • Easier to clean as some of the skirt area is smooth now instead of tooled
  • Quarter Horse bars and a wide variety of gullet sizes to fit any horse
  • Specifically designed as a ladies reining saddle

What Can Be Improved 

  • Doesn’t provide as much close contact with the horse as other saddles
  • A higher price point, but the quality is impeccable
  • It’s best for stock horses and doesn’t fit other breeds well

Type: Reining Saddle
Weight: 32 lbs
Seat Size: 15.5’’ to 16’’
Gullet With: 6 ⅝” to 8’’

4. HR Hud Roberts Reiner Saddle 60 

reiner saddle

The HR Hud Roberts Reiner Saddle 60 is popular with everyone from the pros to amateurs because of the lightweight build, smaller seat size available for youth riders, and quality design. Riders can select a three or four-inch cantle based on individual needs and the suede seat helps provide extra grip on spins and sliding stops in reining competition.

Gullet size and bar length are limited to one option, so this saddle is best used on the stock breeds it was designed for. The price point makes this an easy choice for many and the Entz Leaf border on the basket makes the design top-notch.

What We Liked 

  • Riders can customize it with either a 3-inch or a 4-inch cantle
  • Beautiful hand-tooling and Entz Leaf Border on the basket
  • This is the best budget reining saddle – high-quality at a good price point
  • Available in the smaller 14.5” seat size for petite riders or teens
  • Suede seat provides extra grip in the saddle

What Can Be Improved 

  • The only gullet size in this model is the 7-inch; it’s best for stock breeds
  • Chestnut color is the only option available
  • The yellow saddle fleece shows through the rear rigging

Type: Reining Saddle
Weight: 31 lbs
Seat Size: 14.5’’ to 16’’
Gullet With: 7’’

5. Dakota Reiner Saddle 


The Dakota Reiner Saddle is the best reining saddle for beginners, providing a durable saddle for the discipline at a price point that allows beginners to explore reining without worry. The suede seat is comfortable and provides a good grip, and the saddle is a close contact, allowing riders to easily cue and train their horses for reining.

As reiner saddles go, this one has fewer options for color and stirrups, but those don’t affect functionality. The important features, like the reining horn and centered seat pocket, are standard. The engraved Montana Silversmiths conchos and basket weave add style to the show ring as well.

What We Liked 

  • Silver conchos engraved and crafted by Montana Silversmiths
  • Suede seat is comfortable and provides grip during reining maneuvers
  • Economical price point in a durable and quality saddle
  • Allows for close contact with the horse because of minimal rigging
  • The reiner horn is only 3.5-inches high with a 2-inch cap

What Can Be Improved 

  • Only available as a light oil saddle, there are no other colors 
  • There is an additional charge for the 17-inch seat size
  • Currently comes with aluminum stirrups instead of the wood and leather 

Type: Reining Saddle
Weight: 35 lbs
Seat Size: 15’’ to 17’’
Gullet With: 6.5’’ to 8”

6. South Bend Saddle Company Reining Saddle 

horse saddle

South Bend Saddle Company offers the best reining saddle for the money and in a model that allows the rider close contact for cueing the horse, whether it’s one that’s still in training or needs some extra support during a reining pattern. Vast amounts of customization are available on this model through seat size, the type of tree (regular and wide), and four color options.

One downside of the South Bend Saddle Company Reining Saddle is that the stirrups don’t hang as far forward, which is a nice feature on the sliding stops, but this is overcome by the overall durability and quality of the saddle.

What We Liked 

  • Smooth west coast skirts are comfortable and easy to clean
  • A close contact design for easy cueing of your horse
  • Four colors available to match any horse coat or trending style
  • The tree comes in both a regular and a wide version
  • The tree is wooden and reinforced with fiberglass for durability

What Can Be Improved 

  • It no longer comes with antique conchos and has stainless steel instead
  • Stirrups do not hang as far forward as on some other reining saddles
  • Heavier saddle than the standard for reining tack

Type: Reining Saddle
Weight: 37 lbs
Seat Size: 15’’ to 17’’
Gullet With: 6.5’’ to 8”

7. Crates Classic Reining Saddle


Crates is arguably the best reining saddle brand, and their Classic Reining Saddle has all the features a competitor needs at a reasonable price. The butterfly skirts on this model offer close contact, and it’s one of the lighter-weight saddles available. Crates have their exclusive EquiFit reiner saddle tree that does well on stocky horses.

Riders feel secure in the narrow center pocket, but this doesn’t fit all body types well. Those riders that do fit in it find the saddle comfortable in the reining arena or on an hours-long trail ride. This classic saddle for a reiner horse also has a long lifespan.

What We Liked 

  • Butterfly skirts offer close contact and subtle cueing of the horse
  • One of the lightest reining saddles available at only 30 pounds
  • Exceptionally comfortable for both the horse and rider even on rides lasting several hours
  • Fits stockier horses well with the exclusive Crates EquiFit Reiner saddle tree
  • Durable and long-lasting saddle

What Can Be Improved 

  • The skirt and fenders are smooth and can be slippery on sliding stops
  • Narrow center pocket in the seat doesn’t fit all riders well
  • The 7-inch gullet isn’t available on the 15-inch seat saddle

Type: Reining Saddle
Weight: 30 lbs
Seat Size: 15’’ to 17’’
Gullet With: 6 ⅝” to 7”

8. Big Horn Training Reiner Saddle 


Learning western reining takes time and practice, and this saddle makes it easy to get up to speed – both literally and figuratively – in the discipline. The Big Horn Training Reiner is designed for practicing at home and training with a roughout finish that provides extra grip, wide stirrups for increased stability, and large D-rings to attach the breastplate or martingale. 

Riders may be disappointed to discover that only a 16-inch seat is available, but those that ride in this size enjoy the bare-bones functionality and durability of the Big Horn. It’s a great addition to the tack room for professionals and serious amateurs.

What We Liked 

  • Roughout seat and fenders provide extra grip not normally found on reining saddles
  • Large D-rings for attaching the martingale or breastplate
  • Stirrups have a 4.5-inch tread, offering extra stability and traction
  • The Steele EquiFit tree offers durability and a consistent fit
  • Ideal for training young horses or practicing at home

What Can Be Improved 

  • There aren’t any extra bells and whistles on the saddle, it’s bare bones
  • The 16-inch seat is the only option riders have
  • It fits stock horse breeds best and may not work on others

Type: Training Saddle
Weight: 31 lbs
Seat Size: 16’’
Gullet With: 7’’

9. HR Hud Roberts Signature Herman Oak Reiner Saddle 


The HR Hud Roberts Signature Herman Oak Reiner Saddle is as functional as it is beautiful, with all the standard seat sizes, comfort, durability, and the beautiful hand-tooling on the Herman Oak leather. This is a top reining saddle and popular in reining circles, hence why it became a signature saddle for the brand.

The only improvement we would recommend is stirrups that fall further forward for those sliding stops. This saddle is ready to work in the training ring or at a competition and easily fits most stock horses. The lining is made of real wool, making it comfortable for the horse and protecting its back.

What We Liked 

  • Beautiful and intricate hand-tooling on a floral background with Bamboo
  • Easily fits most stock breeds with standard bars and gullet
  • Seat sizes available in half-inch increments from 14 to 16-inch seats for a precise fit
  • Herman Oak leather is soft, supple, and durable
  • Comfortable seat made of Buffalo hide with pop stitching

What Can Be Improved 

  • Stirrups align straight down and don’t fall forward as much as we would like
  • The beautiful hand-tooling and immaculate leather is tedious to clean
  • Slightly taller swell than most reiners prefer

Type: Reining Saddle
Weight: 35 lbs
Seat Size: 14’’ to 17’’
Gullet With: 6.75’’ 

10. Crates Supreme Light Ladies Reiner

womens reining saddle

This may just be the best saddle for reining for ladies. The Crates Supreme Light Ladies Reiner is supremely well-made and comfortable. It incorporates all the features we’ve come to expect in a reining saddle: stirrups that swing forward, a balanced and comfortable seat, wide stirrups, and a standard fit.

Unfortunately, this saddle is only available in a 15.5-inch or a 16-inch seat so it’s not an option for all riders. Those that do fit this saddle will never want to ride in anything else. The saddle is lightweight, thanks to its tree, and well-made so that it will last for many years and rides.

What We Liked 

  • Stirrups and fenders swing forward to maximize stability on sliding stops
  • Narrow ground seat in a centered pocket gives a comfortable and balanced ride
  • A lightweight yet sturdy tree contributes to the saddle’s overall lower weight
  • Three color options available – natural, chestnut, and mahogany
  • Wide stirrups for extra balance, traction, and support

What Can Be Improved 

  • The smooth surface on the skirt and fenders doesn’t provide much grip
  • There are only two seat sizes available – 15.5 and 16-inches
  • As awesome as this saddle is, men won’t find it comfortable

Type: Reining Saddle
Weight: 29 lbs
Seat Size: 15.5’’ to 16’’
Gullet With: 6 ⅝”’ to 7’’

How to Choose a Reining Saddle?

Consider use when choosing a reining saddle; those designed specifically for the sport work best because of their stirrup position and weight.

Stirrup Placement 

Stirrup placement is crucial on a reining saddle because of the sliding stops and maneuvers completed. The stirrups should fall under the swell, positioning a rider’s feet and legs farther forward so that they sit deep in the seat of the saddle on the sliding stops. Fenders should swing freely forward to allow this.


Reining saddles are generally lighter than saddles used for other western disciplines. The lightweight saddle allows more freedom of movement and hindquarters engagement, which is especially necessary on spins and sliding stops in reining patterns. A good reining saddle will be closer to 30 pounds, whereas other stock saddles can be up to 36 pounds or heavier.

Balance and Seat Pocket 

A balanced and centered saddle with a deep seat pocket is necessary for reining because of all the maneuvers and quick actions required in a reining pattern. The seat pocket provides the rider with stability and keeps them centered over the horse’s point of balance, making it easier to stay in sync with the horse.


Any saddle you purchase should be durable and able to withstand many uses over decades of time, and this is true for a reining saddle too. Look for a well-made saddle with quality leather, stitching, and attachments. While name-brand saddles don’t have exclusive access to durability, it does add an extra layer of trust.

Low Swell, Horn, and Cantle  

Reining saddles typically have a lower swell, horn, and cantle when compared to other western saddles. The lower swell and horn make it easier to move the reins without inadvertently catching them on those parts of the saddle. The lower cantle allows the rider to move their hips more freely.


What is a reining saddle? 

A reining saddle is a western type that is specifically designed for the sport of reining with forward stirrups and a flatter seat area.

What is different about a reining saddle? 

Differentiating factors in a reining saddle are the stirrup placement, flatter seat area, especially the horn and swell, and lighter weight. 

What makes a good reining saddle? 

A good reining saddle is designed to allow the horse and rider to move freely and keep the rider centered and moving with the horse.

Are reining saddles heavy? 

No, reining saddles aren’t heavy, they are generally lighter weight than other western saddles.

Are reining saddles comfortable?

Reining saddles are comfortable and keep the rider balanced and centered while allowing free movement. 

What’s the difference between a cutting saddle and a reining saddle? 

The major difference between a cutting saddle and a reining saddle is that the cutting saddle normally has a bigger horn and swell.

Can you do cutting in a reining saddle? 

You can do cutting in a reining saddle.

What is the point of the sliding stop in reining? 

Reining developed from working cattle in the western part of the United States. Sliding stops were needed if cattle stopped quickly.

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