Icelandic horse riding practices aim to place the rider further caudally on the horse’s back than in English riding, claiming that a weight shift toward the hindquarters improves the quality of the tölt (e.g. giving the shoulder more freedom to move). This study compared saddle pressure patterns and the effects on limb kinetics and kinematics of three saddles: an Icelandic saddle (SIcel, lowest point of seat in the hind part of the saddle), a treeless saddle cushion (SCush) and a dressage-style saddle (SDres). Twelve Icelandic horses were ridden with SIcel, SCush and SDres on an instrumented treadmill at walk and tölt. Saddle pressure, limb forces and kinematics were recorded simultaneously. With SCush, pressure was highest under the front part of the saddle, whereas the saddles with trees had more pressure under the hind area. The saddles had no influence on the motion patterns of the limbs. The slight weight shift to the rear with SCush and SIcel may be explained by the more caudal position of the rider relative to the horse’s back.