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Fitting a Saddle Pad

Fitting a Saddle Pad

Fitting a saddle pad for both the horse and rider is crucial to ensure comfort, safety, and optimal performance. Here are some tips on how to correctly fit a saddle pad:

  1. Measure Your Horse's Back

The first step in fitting a saddle pad is to measure your horse's back. You'll need to measure from the withers (the highest point of the horse's shoulder) to the base of the lumbar vertebrae. 

  1. Choose the Right Pad Size

Once you have measured your horse's back, choose a saddle pad that matches the size of your saddle. A pad that is too small can cause pressure points, while a pad that is too large can shift and cause discomfort. A properly fitting saddle pad should cover the entire saddle area and extending a minimum of 4cm (1.5 inches) at the front and back of the saddle. For example if your saddle measures 64cm (25 inches) your saddle pad should be a minimum length of 72cm (28 inches).

  1. Check the Pad's Thickness

The thickness of the saddle pad should be chosen based on the type of riding you'll be doing. A thicker pad may be suitable for trail riding or rodeo events, while a thinner pad may be preferred for dressage or jumping. The pad should provide enough cushioning to absorb shock and protect your horse's back without interfering with the fit of the saddle.

  1. Check the Pad's Shape

The shape of the saddle pad should match the shape of your horse's back. Some horses have a more prominent wither or a flatter back, and the saddle pad should accommodate these differences. A contoured pad may be necessary for horses with a prominent wither, while a straight pad may be suitable for horses with a flatter back.

  1. Check the Pad's Material

The material of the saddle pad can also affect the fit and comfort of your horse. Felt saddle pads made from wool or a blend of wool and synthetic fibers are a popular choice due to their excellent shock absorption and moisture-wicking properties. However, other materials like foam or gel may be preferred for specific disciplines or horses with sensitive backs.

  1. Check the Rider's Comfort

Lastly, don't forget to consider the rider's comfort when fitting a saddle pad. The pad should not interfere with the rider's position or stability. 

In conclusion, fitting a saddle pad for both the horse and rider requires attention to detail and careful consideration of the horse's back shape, size, and the rider's comfort. A properly fitting saddle pad will provide the necessary cushioning and support to protect your horse's back and improve performance.

Check out our range of Felt Saddle Pads

or our Beautiful Unicorn Saddle Pads that combine a contoured wool felt saddle pad with a beautiful woven wool blanket top

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