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How to fit a saddle pad to a horse

Having purchased your saddle pad, the next step is to fit it correctly on your horse. Here are our six simple steps on how to fit a saddle pad to a horse.

How to fit a saddle pad to a horse

There are many different saddle pads to choose from in a bewildering array of styles, colours, designs, materials and price points. It is important to make sure any saddle pad you purchase actually fits under your saddle. For example if you have an all purpose saddle, you will require an all purpose shaped saddle pad, or if you have a dressage saddle, then you will require a dressage shaped saddle pad. Whatever the shape and design of saddle pad, the process of how to fit a saddle pad to your horse is broadly the same.

There are six basic steps to ensure your saddle pad is seated correctly on your horse’s back.

  1. From the rear of your horse slide the pad over the centre of your horse’s back, ensuring that it is
  2. covering the withers.

    saddle pad fit
  3. Lift the spine of the pad up slightly and check to see if you can fit the fingers of one hand in the
  4. space between the top of the pad and the wither. (Note if your pad sits tight on your horse’s spine
    or withers, the pad will be uncomfortable for the horse as it will pull downwards and not give your
    horse any space to move in).

    Fitted Saddle Pad
  5. Make sure the rest of your pad is lying flat against the horse.
  6. Take your saddle and place it slightly forward on your horse’s withers, then slide it back so that it
  7. finishes in its natural resting place dictated by the horse’s conformation. (Remember to make sure
    that the saddle pad does not move during this process). The saddle should stop behind the
    shoulder blades, to ensure the horse has freedom of movement.

    How should a saddle pad fit
  8. Check to make sure that you can still fit your fingers between the saddle pad and withers. If all
  9. looks good you can finish by adding the girth.
  10. Finally if your saddle pad has the velcro straps attach them to the saddle, stirrup leathers and girth.
  11. This helps stabilise the pad on the horse’s back, keeping it in its place under the saddle.

fitted saddle pad with saddle and girth

Saddle pad fitting isn’t a one-off job, this is especially true if you are trying a pad for the first time. You should check your saddle pad regularly once it has been used to make sure the sweat areas are even on both sides of the pad. Similar to humans, who get fitter, lose weight and need to buy smaller clothes, as a horse gets fitter the muscles change shape. A good quality saddle pad with a correction system will allow you to add shims, to ensure your saddle pad and saddle remains a good fit for your horse.

Whilst this guide explains how to properly fit a saddle pad to your horse, remember, even the best saddle pad won’t help if your saddle doesn’t fit well. Just like you check your saddle pad regularly, you should also check your saddle. A skilled saddle fitter can assess if your saddle fits correctly and make any needed adjustments. A well-fitted saddle and saddle pad can boost your horse’s performance, keep them comfortable, and support their overall health. It’s worth investing in a high-quality saddle and saddle pad that will serve your horse well and last for years with proper care.

Mattes range of saddle pads

At Pink Equine, we take pride in crafting high-quality horse tack with the utmost care and attention to detail. We hold ourselves to rigorous standards, ensuring that every product leaving our company meets our stringent criteria for excellence. We believe in providing our customers with only the best, which is why we are selective about the brands we recommend and sell.

One such brand that we wholeheartedly endorse is Mattes. Renowned for their superior craftsmanship and dedication to equine comfort, Mattes produces custom-made saddle pads of exceptional quality. These saddle pads are meticulously crafted from materials specifically chosen to benefit the horse, offering optimal comfort and support.

What sets Mattes apart is their commitment to precision fit. Each saddle pad is expertly designed to conform perfectly to a horse’s back, ensuring maximum comfort and minimal pressure points. We understand the importance of a well-fitted saddle pad in promoting the health and well-being of your horse, which is why we stand behind Mattes products wholeheartedly.

At Pink Equine, we wouldn’t recommend a brand that we didn’t trust implicitly. We prioritize customer satisfaction and strive to offer only the finest products that meet our stringent standards. With Mattes, you can rest assured that you’re investing in quality, durability, and, most importantly, the comfort and happiness of your horse.

Mattes pads are made with a quilt, manufactured using a superior cotton twill fabric, the kind used in heavy-duty work clothing. Inside the quilt where flexibility and durability are important is a double layer of Polyester non-woven felt fabric which is far superior to other materials because it retains its shape under continuous pressure. The result is a naturally breathable quilt, firm enough to keep its shape over time and one that does not create pressure points for the horse. If you are looking for a replacement saddle pad, that is going to last and provide supreme comfort for your horse or pony, you won’t find better. You can view the Mattes saddle pad range here.

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Mattes range of square saddle pads

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