No one knows who exactly invented the first saddles, but they were used more than 4,000 years ago. The saddles were simple and usually made from pieces of cloth or animal hides, serving as a buffer between the rider and the horse.
By around 700 B.C., Assyrian warriors in the Middle East created saddles with more elaborate designs with girth-like straps. Around 500 B.C., Siberian nomads had improved upon the design and made saddles from leather, hair, felt and gold, and some of them were cushioned and outfitted with leather stirrups. In 200 B.C., Asian horseman created a saddle that kept the weight of the rider off the horse's vertebrae for the animal's comfort and to keep the animal in service longer.