Ok. I am overweight and am working on losing the weight again. While I am losing the weight, and building up my boy's back muscles I would like to protect his back. I have been thinking serioulsy about a thin-line pad. Do they really work like they day? Is it worth the $$ for the half pad one? I don't mind spending the money on my horse, just want to make sure it isn't throwing the money away.
Most likely I will need a new jumping saddle in the near future but I want to wait until his back builds up more.
I love the thinline pad. I have several of their pads. My favorite (and my horses) is their new contender pad. It is the thinline sewn into the pad from Back on Track. My horse really seems to use his back better when ridden in this pad, it is thin enough like a baby pad that it doesn't alter my saddle fit. I personally hate half pads because I hate stacking pads on top of each other and interfering with what I feel and I have a saddle that fits so I don't need any extra padding. If you do a search in H/J forum as well I think you will find several threads on people who love their thinline pads. You will pull mine from my cold dead hands.
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well, I am a big girl on a small Prince & the Pea horse. (pony. hony. whatever. I'm big, he's not. )
Thinline pads made a HUGE difference for us.
If you do a search on this forum for 'thinline' you'll find the old thread by me--something like "Can it really be this simple?"--and a couple others.
It seems like it either helps a LOT, or not at all.
I use mine over a sheepskin half pad. (His Highnessness has shown in the past he really DOES prefer sheepskin ) I bought the shims and the 'insert' pads in regular thinline, not ultra. The rear shims PLUS the insert pads are attached via redneck double-sided-carpet-tape to the top of the half-pad. Cost less than $45 for all the Thinline, I already owned the half-pad(s). There is a fairly dramatic difference in how the horse goes. Whether it is his back or the pads, there is also a pretty dramatic difference in my being able to sit the trot and *especially* the canter. ( I am 'gifted' myself with degenerative hip and spine issues)
I'm all about the fact that if you HAVE the back, it's easy to sit. So perhaps it's because his back is happy, I can sit. Chicken:Egg, etc.
Regardless, I can put the same pads on, sans shims, and not have as good a ride. Close, but not AS good.
And this makes me sound like SUCH a DQ, but not really. My horse is just very, very strongly opinionated, and a sissy to boot, which sort of makes it easy to decide on things.
His son could care less. So not every horse/rider is going to see DRAMA.
I did. Makes it easy. I covet with a passion the sheepskin half pad that I could just insert the shims into. I just cannot, not justify that kind of expense. For now, we use carpet tape and all is right with the world.
I'm one of those who noticed no difference. My horse could care less. It did not affect my ability to sit his trot, nor did it help my back.
Disclaimer: He is not a big moving horse and his saddle has the flocking adjusted every 4 months.
I'm kicking myself for not returning it in the 30 day window. So far, I haven't gotten around to selling it so it sits in DD's vacant bedroom
You can sometimes find them on ebay. Mine will probably be there when I get around to it
I have the thinline half pad with fleece and really like it.
I'm not nearly as sore after riding as I used to be. Proof (at least for me) that they work: you know how when you lunge a horse with the saddle on, the stirrups bounce up and down and all over the place? With the thinline, they do not bounce much at all. Shock is being (at least somewhat ) absorbed.
When I was riding my horse in a saddle that fit him reasonably well but not perfectly, the Thinline made a noticeable difference.
Now that we're riding in a saddle that's darn near perfect for him, the Thinline did not make much of a difference at all. Fortunately, I own a Thinline Saddle Fitter pad where the Thinline can be easily removed, so I just took it out when it didn't seem to be doing anything anymore. It will probably go back in when I get back to working actively over fences (more than just a few crossrails here and there).
I am, however, still a big fan of their other products. The Thinline reins are a godsend for eventers (don't slip even when wet and easy to keep in your hands).
I didn't see a miraculous difference in the horse or feel any difference in me. But I had a custom fitted saddle, so it fits. I think maybe if your saddle if iffy and/or moves around a bit-- you'll see more stablization. I still use the half pad, even though it doesn't seem to make a huge difference. I figure it can't hurt, and it's a small amount of shock absortion without padding up and changing the fit of the saddle.
I have tried every "magic" pad I can find (Thinline, Mattes, Bay Jacobsen, Back on Track) so far I haven't seen anything worth writing home about. The Thinline does seem to stop some saddle slippage and absorb some shock.
The Mattes as a godsend while the horse was gaining weight, until I had the saddle fitted. Then it was too much.