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Cowgirls Boots 06-07-2012 10:50 PM

Let's talk saddle pads- western & english
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Well I've been thinking for quite sometime now that I would like to invest in two nice saddle pads- an english and western one.

I'm looking for a pad that is a great cushion between the saddle and the horses back. I've seen alot of western saddle pads like the air ride, gel impact, wool, etc. but, I'm not sure which ones right for me..

Same goes for english, but I don't ride english as much. I was looking at half pads but I'm not sure if that would provide any if at all extra cushion.

So when I ride english I ride with just a regular ol' square pad. I feel like my horse would like more padding underneath it all. (and I would feel alot better :grin: )

When I ride western I ride with this pad-

It was givin to me and I liked the way it sat on my horses backs better then the mustang brand barrel pad I got.

I don't do much work. I take a lesson 1x a week and am planning on getting my horse into a daily w/t/c routine to get her and myself into shape. We also do some trail riding but not everyday.

I saw the Professional Choice air ride pad and it looked like junk to me. It feels like cardboard.

I like my fleece saddle pad but another problem is that when my horse gets sweaty she REALLY sweats under te saddle pad because her back can't breath.

So, what pad do you guys recommend. I'm not looking to spend alot. Like preferably 100 and under.
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Cowgirls Boots 06-08-2012 07:32 PM

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DaraT 06-08-2012 07:55 PM

Sorry I can't help with under $100, my favorite western pad was pricey. It's by Wyngz. It's covered closed cell foam with over 70 holes and vented back for air circulation. After a ride, you can hose it off and it will dry within 30 minutes. It's not heavy, like some gel pads can be. I love it.

Wallaby 06-08-2012 07:59 PM

With English pads, as long as your saddle fits well (which it should!), the pad is just there to protect the saddle from sweat. The panels (the squishy-ish part of the saddle that sits on the top of the horse's back) are the cushion for the back, that's why they're squishy. :) Basically, if your English saddle fits just right or is slightly too narrow, a thick pad is going to make that fit even worse. If the saddle is much too wide, a thicker pad might be able to help but if the saddle is really that much wider than it needs to be, you're going to have other fit issues that are unfixable with a pad.
I'm not super familiar with half-pads but I believe that they are used to cushion the spine without adding too much padding in other areas. I'm not 100% though.
For a pad, I'd just get a normal (one of my english pads is this style and I love it - it feels more cushiony to my fingers than normal english pads but it's no thicker than the average AP pad) english pad.
Whatever you get, I'd get more than one since english pads needs to be washed regularly (I wash mine every week so I have 3 pads, two are washed at a time while one is being used, etc).

Western saddles don't have that built in padding, that's why western pads are much thicker than English ones.
I have a Diamond Wool pad that I adore. The only bummer about mine is that it's 1.5 inches thick and Lacey's so wide that any pad over 3/4 inch throws off saddle fit quite a bit. Anyway, I can't use that one right now but I'm holding on to it for when/if I ever get another horse.
You'll find that a lot of people like neoprene pads or other kinds of pads like that which I guess works for them. For me, I find that wool breathes pretty well and horses like it, so why change? haha I also like how wool conforms to the horse's back over time.
When looking for a pad: look for one that contoured to the horse's back and preferably has wear leathers - I find they help the pad look new for longer.
Here's a link to one like mine:
TB25- Diamond Wool Contoured Cowboy Saddle Pad

Joe4d 06-08-2012 07:59 PM

wool felt or wool fleece for trails or endurance, reinsman tacky too's for activities requiring more grip.

Skyseternalangel 06-08-2012 08:01 PM

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For the English saddle, it is designed to be padded perfectly to fit the horse's back and not cause pressure points (distribute weight evenly) the ONLY reason you need a pad of any sort is mainly to keep the leather from touching the horse (and thus ruining the saddle via sweat) or if the horse has a problem like a sway back or working on a topline then you bring in a correctional pad (a half pad)

But lately it's kind of a fashion statement to have a half pad. But all you really need is a square one. Some are better than others, of course.

DrumRunner 06-08-2012 08:01 PM

I love Classic Equine ESP pads..but they usually run anywhere from $140+, but they are SO worth it. I have a few and I love them, ride in them multiple times a week and I've had them for a while.. I've also heard good things about the Impact Gel pads..but again that is another higher end pad.

Cowgirls Boots 06-08-2012 08:25 PM

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What about the classic equine contourpedic pads? Are they any good?
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DrumRunner 06-08-2012 08:28 PM

Yeah, they're okay..It should be very good for what you're going to be doing.

Cowgirls Boots 06-08-2012 08:31 PM

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Okay thanks so much DR!
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