The Different Types of Pads Used Under the Saddle on Race Horses

The Different Types of Pads Used Under the Saddle on Race Horses

It is important to remember that a saddle pad is not just a cloth that will remain under your riding saddle. Instead, they are indispensable, which is an essential factor to remember. Still, you can find numerous options available on the market, which is why it is challenging to determine the best one for your needs.

Remember that a blanket goes between the saddle and horse. It will keep the underside of it clean and absorb sweat while offering you cushioning and comfort. Generally, they can prevent your chaffing and ensure the saddle remains in place. As soon as you check here, you will understand the different options you can find on the market.

At the same time, pads come in a wide array of materials, shapes, and sizes since you can use them for numerous riding purposes and styles. It is vital to learn how to choose the one for your requirements.

Why Are They Necessary?

The Different Types of Pads Used Under the Saddle on Race Horses

The main idea is to use them to ensure the best activity possible. Of course, the options depend on the rider and saddle you use. Therefore, you should know the main reasons why you need it in the first place:

  • Prevent Horse’s Sweat from Affecting the Saddle – When you get the quality pad, you will prevent sweat from the horse’s back and hair from damaging saddles, which are expensive and necessary.
  • Eliminate Abrasion and Friction – It is the best way to prevent friction from the movement, reducing the chances of creating chafing sores on your horse. At the same time, you can prevent prolonged riding discomfort, a common issue for most people.
  • Deal With Pressure Distribution – You should know that some are here to distribute pressure from the rider on your horse’s back. That way, you will spread the weight, protecting your horse’s musculoskeletal system due to uneven pressure. Remember that unevenness can lead to severe injuries and back pain. Some horses, especially the ones featuring sway backs, require specific correction options, which is crucial to understand.
  • Absorb Shock – When you have a high-end blanket, you can protect your horse from shock when riding on rocky or uneven terrain.
  • Balance – You should know that they can protect your horse’s back by preventing imbalances that may affect the fitting and lead to serious health issues mentioned above.

Watch this video: to understand the importance of pads.

Differences Between Western and English Pad

You should know that western ones are heavy, oversized, and square-shaped, meaning you should get a significant one. English ones are small, so you should find the appropriate size to fit your specific needs.

1.   English

Similarly, as mentioned above, English options are thinner than their western counterparts, lighter, and feature flocking to ensure cushion to the horse’s back. Most of them will allow you to ensure it remains clean, which is not something that can fit under a western one.

Generally, English pads feature between seventeen and nineteen inches drop and twenty-six inches spine. Still, if you decide to buy a more practical option, you should get according pad that will fit your requirements and needs.

2.   Western

When we compare them with English, you should know that these are larger, thicker, and heavier, while they do not come with different ergonomics and cushions for the horse’s back. At the same time, you can find them in a wide array of sizes and styles, depending on your option you have.  

Remember that when you purchase a western pad, you can use it for its English counterpart, mainly because the saddle doesn’t come with cushions. The typical size of the pad is thirty-two by thirty-two inches. Of course, for riding a pony, you will get sixteen inches, which is vital to remember.

When it comes to racing pads, you should know that we do not recommend you to use a western one for an English saddle. Since western ones have significant padding and bulkiness, that may affect the part between the horse’s back and saddle frame.

Back in the day, cowboys used saddle blankets instead of pads. Remember that English pads will not offer you enough cushioning to protect the horse’s back, so you should avoid using them on your Western counterpart. However, using an everyday blanket, for this reason, will not offer shock absorption. That is why you should get the professional one.

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