View Full Version : Saddle pad to insure correct fit?

florida foxhunter
Apr. 1, 2012, 08:20 AM
I am a breeder and competitor, and have many different horses (different ages and sizes) to ride. I only have two Antares saddles (wide and medium trees).

I seem to remember recently seeing an atricle saying that fleeces are the most effective saddle pad to eliminate pressure points and make saddles fit the best.

I want to be sure I'm using the best. I am considering purchasing a leather (Coffin or Saddle Right) pad, new sheepskin half pad, (I already have a gel pad and fleece half pads). I have a youngster that I just obtained (without much topline yet) and he seems a bit backsore........


Melissa.Van Doren
Apr. 1, 2012, 08:47 AM
If the saddle *almost* fits, I like Fleeceworks sheepskin with memory foam inserts for thicker padding and Thinline sheepskin with Ultra inserts for thinner padding, alone or under a regular thickness pad.

If the saddle is too narrow, really bridges, or otherwise just doesn't fit the back, no amount of padding is going to work.

Apr. 1, 2012, 09:47 AM
For pressure relief my vote is the Ecogold Triple protection pad. I also use Ecogold hunter and jumper pads. The have a built in half
Pad of memory foam.

I am definately biased.

Apr. 1, 2012, 05:45 PM
The Saddle Right pad can't be beat! Especially when combined with Antares.

Apr. 1, 2012, 05:48 PM
Fleece/sheepskin pads can get a bit lumpy over time if not well cared for which can cause uneven pressure. I have the leather saddlerite pad and my horse feels very comfy in his back and does not show any pain or discomfort when being curried all over his back.

Apr. 1, 2012, 08:21 PM
Honestly I've found that a good old fashioned wither pad (http://www.doversaddlery.com/images/l/0001917.jpg) works with my wide tree saddle to fit a huge variety of horses.

Apr. 1, 2012, 09:52 PM
I love my ogilvy pad, I ride small TB's to large WB's with the same saddle and it really seems to fill in any gaps and allows ample room at the withers.

Apr. 2, 2012, 03:31 PM
OP, it really depends on where and why the saddle doesn't fit.

When you palpate his back, where is he tight or sore?

Does the saddle rock and back forth when you post? IME, this "rolling pin" movement of a saddle creates a lot of pain quickly. It's also hard to fix because is usually originates in a tree that's just the wrong shape for Horseling's back.

My advice: Don't buy a pad until you know what problem you are trying to fix.

Apr. 2, 2012, 04:09 PM
P - I'll email you, but you are welcome to borrow one of my sheepskin half pads for a couple of weeks if you'd like to try it out. I have several, as my older mare definitely prefers sheepskin rather than gel or Thinline pads.

That said, I'm considering trying an Ecogold pad, since I've heard great things about them. (And have much less back soreness myself since switching to memory foam mattress topper, and then full mattress. Not equivalent, I know, but still....)

Apr. 2, 2012, 09:32 PM
I agree with mvp.

I have just about every back pad known to man. Off of the top of my head I know I've got:

Saddleright pads
Mattes pads
Fleeceworks pad (with shims)
Ecogold pad
thinline pad
thinline pad (with inserts)
A couple of Beval pads (the fleece wither relief pads)
and maybe 10-15 other non-name-brand pads (wither relief pads, riser pads, felt pads, memory foam pads, etc.)

I use my thinline pad with inserts on my big jumper gelding who has a County saddle that fits his shape well, but could use a little bit of a rear riser. I can interchangeably use my Ecogold, saddleright, or Mattes pads on my mare whose County fit her really well until she lost a little muscle and now needs just a little "fill." And I cycle through all of my pads on my baby whose shape seems to be constantly changing. I've noticed that my Ecogold pad makes the saddle bridge a bit and I seem to have better luck with my fleece pads. But I also shim those pads right in the dip behind his withers and so I think it has more to do with his shape relative to the saddle than anything else.

I guess my point is that, like mvp said, until you know what you're trying to fix there's no point in investing in any of the expensive backs pads. On the other hand, if you're just trying to arm yourself with a bunch of different types of pads I think you're probably on the right track :)