Please help me pick one!
Hi everyone, I'm new here, and desperately need help choosing a bareback pad. I know that probably sounds silly, but it's actually a pretty big purchase for us and I want to make sure I'm getting my money's worth. My goal is to use a bb pad (with NO stirrups) rather than a saddle most of the time, and I'm looking for one that will do these things:
*keep us comfortable - the horse I ride has a very, ahem, prominant, backbone and I have a previously broken tailbone, so the two won't mix well without some good protection.
*give me some "stickiness" - I know if I'm afraid of slipping off, I won't be in a good riding position!
*not pad so much that I can't *feel* the horse - this is why I want to ride bb. I want to be able to tell which leg is coming forward when, I want to be able to be precise with my leg and seat aids, etc. One of the biggest things I want out of bareback is a better feel of the horse, so I don't want to ruin that with the pad I choose, and some pads look almost like a saddle in how they're made. I have a very hard time feeling anything precise through a saddle.
*I can afford the more expensive ones (since this is our whole "saddle" budget), but don't want to pay more if they really aren't worth it, so I'd love any input if you've tried the cheaper and more expensive ones and can tell me if you really get what you pay for.
Sorry for the long post, but please tell me which of these you'd choose - or another - thank you all so much for any help!
This one looks great for sticking and natural feel - just not sure on padding http://www.elcompanero.com
Any idea if this one would interfere with feeling the horse's movement? http://www.justequus.com/Overview-5-Baretek.html
These are so much less expensive - are they just as good?
i actually have that bestfriends bareback pad in red. It is very comfy and you can still feel the horse move and everything!
The only bad thing about that pad is that if you wear shorts and sneakers, the buckles rub against your leg. I found it annoying, but when i rode in my breeches and boots, it didn't affect me at all.
I love the lightweightness of that pad and the amount of foam on it is just right. It gives you enough padding for boney horses yet it's not thick enough to interfere with feeling the horse.
Go for a pad with a non slip bottom/girth and suede or velvety stuff where your butt goes.
Re: Please help me pick one!
You have to decide if you do want to ride bareback or not. If you do then any of those pads will do the trick, if you are afraid of falling off maybe hold off a bit longer before venturing with no tack.
No bareback pads will interfere with your horses movement because they are treeless and nothing but squishy with a cover. Even the ones with fake cantles and pommels don't interfere with movement.
Thanks for the thoughts - it's not that I was worried the pad would interfere with the horses actual movement. I just don't want it to keep me from Feeling the movements of each leg.
Go with the best friend pad then. They are secure and gentle but you can still feel the movement through them.
My friend had a bareback pad similar to that "Best Friends" one that I loved. I think it was made by Big D and was only like 40 bucks. It was just enough to protect me from her Thoroughbred's withers, but did not interfere with any feel. I could also put a thick western pad under it, and it fit her POA also!
But my most favorite thing about that Big D pad was it only had ONE buckle. Not straps on either side and a girth. Just one buckle under the center of the horse. As mentioned by Appylover, the buckles on each side can rub your legs really bad if riding in shorts! I learned this the hard way from a fleece-type bareback pad with girth.
The Thoroughbred also really liked the pad. She was very girthy and would always try to bite you or something near by when being girthed up. But with the Big D bareback pad, she was an angel.
Really, i think you should ride without one. Bareback pads complicate things i find. But thats just me.
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