Putting a Saddle Pad on Your Horse

ArticleHow to - General Equine AdviceFriday 29 January 2010
horse saddle pads

Putting a Saddle Pad on Your Horse

Horse saddle pads are useful for many things when riding. Along with blankets, they protect leather on your horse saddle from hair and sweat from the horse. They also stop chafing between the saddle and back. Horse saddle pads can also help to adjust any sizing issues with the horse saddle. For more information on how to put a saddle pad on your horse, see below.

Before you can put a saddle pad on your horse it is important that your horse is groomed properly. This makes sure that dirt, sweat and mud embedded on your horse’s back do not come between the tack and cause chafing.

Decide on how many, and what types of blankets or pads you will use with your horse saddle. A lot of people prefer to place a fabric blanket on first with a topping of a foam pad. It all depends on how the saddle fits and whether you need extra cushioning. Be careful not to make this combination too thick or thin as this could affect your saddle’s position.

Put the pad on the back of the horse so that it lies forward towards the horse’s shoulder area, and over his withers. Make sure that it is centralised.

If using another horse saddle pad, put this on top. If you are after a bit more elevation at the back of the saddle, place this pad or blanket where the saddle’s cantle will lie. A pad for front lift should go under the pommel of the saddle.

Extra Tips

  • When you put a saddle pad on your horse do not use more than necessary just to adjust the size. It is not acceptable to use these for anything more than just a small difference in size.


  • You may need to change the way you arrange your pads or blankets after a while depending on your horse’s muscle growth. 


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