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Old 10-27-2011, 08:58 PM  
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Saddle pads

With so many saddle pads out there, what is the best type of material used in a saddle pad (felt, fleece, gel, or foam) and why? I have some thoughts, but I like to hear others opinion before I make a broad and probably uneducated statement.
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Old 10-28-2011, 05:36 AM  
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I'm no expert by any means ... but I know what I like and what works for me. I prefer felt. I just bought a CSI pad. Quite pricey and I can't believe I splurged like that, but I just have to say === I LOVE IT!!! I know there are less expensive felt pads but I have a hard to fit wide paint and he was showing signs (white hairs) of a pressure point on one side. I'm hoping this pad will rectify the problem. Of course, for as much as I paid for the pad, I probably could have almost bought a new saddle but I love my Billy Cook saddle and it's pretty close to perfect for him.

I've also used a neoprene pad and I like it too but not as well as felt.
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Old 10-28-2011, 06:49 AM  
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well for me, it partially depends on the weather and what not. right now (meaning warmer weather) i have felt-lightweight, and have used foam. in the colder weather-like today at 29 degrees this morn- i feel better with the fleece. i feel like fleece can be so much warmer so it helps not only the horse but ME when its cold!!! my butt gets cold lol.
obviously it also depends on the fit for the horse...granted pads are not quite as uncomfy as an unfitted saddle, but they can cause their issues as well
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Old 10-28-2011, 07:49 AM  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Valerie62 View Post
I'm no expert by any means ... but I know what I like and what works for me. I prefer felt. I just bought a CSI pad. Quite pricey and I can't believe I splurged like that, but I just have to say === I LOVE IT!!! I know there are less expensive felt pads but I have a hard to fit wide paint and he was showing signs (white hairs) of a pressure point on one side. I'm hoping this pad will rectify the problem. Of course, for as much as I paid for the pad, I probably could have almost bought a new saddle but I love my Billy Cook saddle and it's pretty close to perfect for him.

I've also used a neoprene pad and I like it too but not as well as felt.
I have a CSI pad as well! I bought one from their booth at horsefest in springfield mo. they did a great demonstration about pressure points using all the different kinds of pads. they basically used a metal press and put each pad over your hand and pressed down. wool and the CSI pad were definitely the best....I could barely feel him pressing with those. gotta say...gel was the WORST. omg.....no protection what so ever!!!
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Old 10-28-2011, 08:45 AM  
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EEE GADS! $300 for a CSI pad!? It looks impressive.
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Old 10-28-2011, 09:20 AM  
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I like the AirRide pads
There was a university study done (I believe published in H&R) that showed them to be superior far as shock absorption
No doubt other good pads have come out since, as technology is always advancing, but for me the Air ride pads work great I use them on a daily basis, and when going on long trail rides
For show, I have Pro Choice under pad, over which I place a wool blanket
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Old 10-28-2011, 10:15 AM  
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EEE GADS! $300 for a CSI pad!? It looks impressive.
it is a large expense, but worth it in the long run. they do give you 30 days to ride the pad, if you are not happy you can return it for a refund.
http://www.csipads.com/guarantee.html
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Old 10-28-2011, 10:47 AM  
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I have absolutely no regrets with buying the CSI pad even with the large cost (and I'm pretty frugal when it comes to spending money). I, too, saw the demonstration at this year's Equine Affair in Ohio and was impressed but I didn't have the funds to buy one at that time. So, I saved my money until I could get one. I was very impressed with the quality of the pad ... I hated putting in on my horse the first time to get dirty.

Some people can get away with using cheapo pads but they either have no problem with saddle fitting, can buy a custom made saddle, or just don't care.
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Old 10-28-2011, 10:51 AM  
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i heard that gel pads can make the horse over hot and cause problems... but im not sure.
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Old 10-28-2011, 11:20 AM  
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I think you need to choose a pad based on the type of riding you do and what you are trying to accomplish with the pad...and your budget. I also agree it depends somewhat on the weather; up here I don't really have to worry about the horse overheating under the pad in the less than 60 minutes we ride, so gel pads or thin line pads work great. Not sure I would want to use them in a hotter climate.
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Old 10-28-2011, 07:55 PM  
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Wool works great because it is a natural fibre. It offers great compression and wicks moisture away from your horse to help keep their back cool and dry. I use 5 Star wool felt pads and they work great.
This is an interesting article on some of the different kinds of pads.
http://5starequineproducts.com/resea...-pad-research/
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Old 10-28-2011, 09:01 PM  
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Here is the study I referred to.
It is not done by a company marketing any type of pad, but rather an independant study
The Air Ride pad has both the impact protection and the wicking property, thus a reason I chose that pad
Others find different pads suitable for what they are doing, far as discipline and riding time
I always try to find independant research, versus 'in house'
Not everyone rides the same amount of time, nor in the same climate, thus one has to chose what works best for their horse in the area they live in, and the riding they do
http://www.thehorse.com/ViewArticle.aspx?ID=9329
I'll have to look into the CSI pads, as they sound interesting from what I just read on the net
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Last edited by Smilie : 10-28-2011 at 09:09 PM.
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Old 10-31-2011, 08:49 PM  
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There are some great pads out there, but what determines a "great pad" is pretty much how well it meets the rider's needs.

A hard to fit horse will need a fantastic pad to help make riding more comfortable, especially if you're having a really hard time getting a saddle to fit properly.

I prefer pads that minimize moisture and wick away sweat - wool is good for this. I can't stand pulling a soaking wet saddle pad off my horse after a long ride.
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Old 11-02-2011, 09:34 AM  
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PRS

I find the felt bottom PRS pad to be fantastic for hard to fit horses.
http://www.downunderhorsemanship.com...er-Top-PRS-Pad

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