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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun. 25, 2007
    Posts
    2,195

    Default Mattes pad alone?

    Working with a new saddle, and although I am not a fan of Mattes pads, saddle fits best with it and pony is happiest in it. As in, REALLY happy. I had one in my tack box from ages ago, and for the last 3-4 yrs was much happier without it. But new horse, new saddle and trying to make it work.

    I tried my pony using only the Mattes yesterday - really did it to see if my saddle sat more balanced...and it clearly did - no regular pad underneath, as I don't like "stuff" between me and the horse. The Mattes isn't long, so the bottom of panel/top of girth area is against horse, but he clearly doesn't mind.

    Is it okay to use just a Mattes with nothing underneath? Is that how they are meant to be used? Afraid a regular pad underneath will cause more pinching and HTH can my horse feel my seatbones with all that stuff underneath?!



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar. 24, 2004
    Location
    Central PA
    Posts
    1,267

    Default

    Yes you can use the Mattes pad with nothing underneath. Like you said, Mattes recommends using the pad directly on the horse's back to take advantage of the wool's properties (wicking, conforming to horse's back). I use Mattes pads directly on my horse's back with a very thin baby pad over the top to keep the flaps of my saddle a bit cleaner.



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun. 25, 2001
    Posts
    2,545

    Default

    If it's a sheepskin pad, I think they are supposed to be used without a pad underneath -- that's the whole point of sheepskin
    "If you can't feed 'em, don't breed 'em."



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec. 12, 2004
    Location
    Massachusetts
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    6,316

    Default

    Yes, the point of the pads, to take advantage of the sheepskin, is to use them directly against the horse. If you just need them for padding purposes, you can put them wherever you want.

    I'll echo the other poster....in order to keep your pad a little cleaner, it's easy to toss a thin baby pad under there. They're no thicker than a washcloth, so aren't going to bulk everything up, just simply keep things clean. Or if you don't care about the pad but don't want sweat soaking into your saddle, you can toss the baby pad on top. Whichever.



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun. 23, 2010
    Location
    Connecticut
    Posts
    1,660

    Default

    I use my sheepskin pad with nothing underneath all the time. I keep a wire brush in my tack trunk (the kind they sell at pet stores, fine wires on a flat paddle) and I comb out the pad after each use and make sure it dries in the sun. Combing out the loose dirt means I don't have to wash it as often, and it stays fluffy.

    The one thing you will have to do is to be sure to at least take a damp cloth and wipe the sweat off the bottom of the flaps where they come in contact with the horse.



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar. 24, 2004
    Location
    Pottstown, PA (East Coventry)
    Posts
    3,014

    Default

    Saddle fitter is having me use the Mattes 1/2 pad directly on my horse. So having the flaps touch the pony shouldn't be an issue.
    Just to echo other posters make sure you wipe the sweat from the bottom of the flap.

    I can't use a baby pad with mine since one of the issues that I have with this horse is the saddle pad wanting to slip down onto his very high withers and create pressure. I have one high withered dressage pad the stays up in the pommel most of the time. I ride in an AP saddle so the pad is a little too long.
    Oh, well, clearly you're not thoroughly indoctrinated to COTH yet, because finger pointing and drawing conclusions are the cornerstones of this great online community. (Tidy Rabbit)



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug. 14, 2004
    Posts
    7,538

    Default

    well, in the old days they didn't use pads and the reason they are called "sweat flaps" is because they keep the sweat off the underside of the saddle.

    so, by all means use only the mattes.

    leaving it outside, sure, but i am pretty sure the manufacturers say no direct sunlight.



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun. 10, 2001
    Location
    nj
    Posts
    8,786

    Default

    you're supposed to use it without the pad. that's the idea.
    i love my matte's half pad. i should say, my mare loves my mattes half pad
    http://www.eponashoe.com/
    TQ(Trail Queen) \"Learn How to Ride or Move Over!!\" Clique



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr. 9, 2007
    Location
    Zone IV/Area III
    Posts
    1,210

    Default

    I use a no slip nunn finer pad cut in half and a very thin baby pad under my mattes



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct. 3, 2002
    Location
    Boogerville, USA
    Posts
    858

    Exclamation

    Quote Originally Posted by Bacchus View Post
    If it's a sheepskin pad, I think they are supposed to be used without a pad underneath -- that's the whole point of sheepskin
    ^THIS!^




  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jun. 25, 2007
    Posts
    2,195

    Default

    I know it's supposed to be on his skin and I am fine with that aspect, and actually prefer it - it has to be so comfortable for the horse to have the sheepskin against his skin. My issue with it is that my saddle flaps are much longer than the pad. So they are against my pony's skin if that makes sense.

    I suppose I could splurge for this?! It's a full size Mattes hunter pad. This would cover underneath the flaps.

    http://www.smartpakequine.com/mattes...pad-7391p.aspx

    The one I have (and that my friend also uses OVER a regular pad) is this which I guess is why it seems odd, and has little coverage under the flaps - is anyone using THIS one alone?? Pony was fine but worried about rubs in area of flap bottom.

    http://www.smartpakequine.com/mattes...x?cm_vc=Search



  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun. 25, 2007
    Posts
    2,195

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by marta View Post
    you're supposed to use it without the pad. that's the idea.
    i love my matte's half pad. i should say, my mare loves my mattes half pad
    Marta, you use the Mattes half pad with nothing else? No rubs or problems?



  13. #13
    Join Date
    Feb. 19, 2009
    Posts
    4,538

    Default

    I use a sheepskin half pad directly against my horse all the time (or at least I used to until I switched to an Ecogold). No ill effects on my saddle or the horse.



  14. #14
    Join Date
    Feb. 19, 2009
    Posts
    4,538

    Default

    oh, and if you don't need the shimming ability of the Mattes, just the sheepskin, check out Engel pads. Much cheaper, same quality (although no custom colors)



  15. #15
    Join Date
    Oct. 3, 2002
    Location
    Boogerville, USA
    Posts
    858

    Thumbs up

    Quote Originally Posted by tpup View Post
    ... My issue with it is that my saddle flaps are much longer than the pad. So they are against my pony's skin if that makes sense. ...
    You do not need to worry about the sweat flaps rubbing; laying against the horse's sides is what they were originally designed for.
    As a bonus, you just might enjoy the closer leg contact

    I also use a half-pad with my dressage saddle.
    Last edited by nasalberry; Jul. 17, 2012 at 01:37 PM. Reason: adding more info.



  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jun. 10, 2001
    Location
    nj
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    8,786

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by tpup View Post
    Marta, you use the Mattes half pad with nothing else? No rubs or problems?
    no rubs, no problem. in fact, we used to compete that way in distance riding before my mare was retired. i still hack her that way. you just wipe the sweat flaps more frequently if your horse sweats a lot. btw, we switched over to the mattes half pad on recommendation of my saddle fitter.
    http://www.eponashoe.com/
    TQ(Trail Queen) \"Learn How to Ride or Move Over!!\" Clique



  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jul. 19, 2003
    Location
    Middleburg, VA
    Posts
    12,801

    Default

    I rode my old horse for EVER in just his half pad. The only time I would put a saddle pad ON TOP of the Mattes was for dressage at shows...just a classier look with the dressage saddle, IMO. But, otherwise, every ride at home, all the jumping phases at shows, just a half pad.

    My new horse needed a pad ON TOP of the Mattes for a little bit better fit. Of course, now I've switched to a narrower saddle that he likes better and can't use the sheepskin

    The whole point of them is to use them directly on their back.. I will never understand putting a baby pad beneath them "to keep them clean." Totally defeats the purpose.

    FYI, if you stick with this game plan, you may want to invest in one or two more, especially if your horse is a big sweater.



  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jun. 10, 2001
    Location
    nj
    Posts
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    Default

    the mattes pads wash v. well. either use woolite or some other gentle detergent. i used to wash it on gentle but then graduated to regular cycle it holds up great. i wash it with my mohair girth. leave it out to air dry.
    http://www.eponashoe.com/
    TQ(Trail Queen) \"Learn How to Ride or Move Over!!\" Clique



  19. #19
    Join Date
    Jan. 16, 2002
    Location
    West Coast of Michigan
    Posts
    36,321

    Default

    I hate half pads, but one of mine clearly prefers the Mattes pads so I bought a couple of shaped full Mattes pads (don't like square ones either, LOL) and just use those.

    If the half pad is what you have, you can put a baby pad on top of it, maybe. Or just use it the way it is--if the horse is happy, mission accomplished.

    There was a thread here about 6-8 weeks ago with a Germany-based website where you could order custom Mattes pads at a fraction of the US cost. I got one from them--seems to be the real thing and the price was about 2/3 of what they cost here.
    Click here before you buy.



  20. #20
    Join Date
    Mar. 2, 2007
    Location
    Upper and Lower Canada
    Posts
    2,849

    Default

    My mare was getting rubs from the edge of her regular saddle pad in back of the saddle. Switched to a Mattes square pad directly against her skin and we got instant relief (though not for my pocketbook). We're never going back.

    I have to say the NuMed pads are nice, too, and somewhat less pricey.



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