Much like Christmas my Valentine’s Day present from my husband had a horse theme. He bought me a Fleeceworks english saddle pad from Charlotte’s Saddlery that I first drooled over at their booth at The AQHA World Championship Show. After riding in this pad a few times I can honestly say I am hooked and if my horse could talk he would say he loves it!
Fleeceworks only makes saddle pads and so they put all their energies into creating the perfect saddle pads to maximize your contact while also maximizing your horse’s comfort. All fleeceworks pads are made from super soft, extra dense Australian Merino sheepskin. Sheepskin is known to prevent pressure points as well as maintain thermal balance. Studies have shown that in order for muscles to perform at their peak condition they must constantly cool themselves and sheepskin can hold up to 30% of its weight in water before it feels wet thus being able to remove excess heat away from the muscles.
I got the Field Hunter/Eventer pad with Perfect Balance Inserts. It has a front roll that prevents saddle slipping and it also features the Perfect Balance System’s internal pockets that can hold Visco-Elastic foam inserts to address fit or conformation issues. It is super soft and decadent! Available online at www.charlottes-saddlery.com and www.fleeceworks.com.
Woody wearing his new Fleeceworks saddle pad.
I have a bit of a fetish when it comes to saddle pads, I collect them like many people collect dishes or movie paraphernalia. When it comes to western show saddle pads I am addicted to Golden West Saddle Pads, they are expertly made and tightly woven, not to mention beyond gorgeous.
However, when I am riding at home or warming up before a class I always use a Professional Choice SMx Air Ride saddle pad. These pads have a 100% merino wool lining to wick away moisture and the standard SMx core is shock absorbent and highly breathable. It allows even circulation in every direction, resulting in accelerated heat dispersion and moisture evaporation. The horse feels less heat and cools off faster, increasing overall performance. It also evenly distributes weight from the saddle and rider thus preventing pressure points from forming allowing a more comfortable ride. This pad, while providing so much “cushy” support, is still very lightweight and flexible.
I knew this pad was amazing after riding in it, but it was truly affirmed when I went up to the barn one day and saw my dad using it on one of his cutting horses even though it has purple stripes. Normally if anything has girly colors he flat out refuses to use it, so I guess he decided it was worth willing to overlook the feminine color. Needless to say, I bought him his own pad so I could have mine back.
Professional Choice SMx Air Ride Western Saddle Pad available at www.profchoice.com.
From The Saddle Ranking: 4 out of 4 horseshoes