Product Review: Padded Ponies Shimmable Half Pad

This was supposed to be posted a while ago when I got my new Horze riser half pad, but I guess I forgot to ever hit publish . . . oh well, better late than never. I've had my Padded Ponies correction half pad for over four years now, so it's safe to say this is a well informed review.

Padded Ponies Half Pad with Shims

My saddle was purchased while I was still in undergrad and riding with the IHSA team. I knew that I wanted to get an adjustable half pad to have more flexibility. At the time, I was just getting into Etsy and the growing number of small equestrian businesses that rely on the platform. My stirrup irons are also from an Etsy shop as well as my half chap monograms. Many shops sell Ogilvy dupes, but I've never been a fan of memory foam nor do I aesthetically like the pads. Padded Ponies was the only shop at the time that had a traditional looking half pad with pockets for shims. Match made in heaven!

After three and a half years of service, this pad has definitely held up well to regular use. It's comparable to the basic half pad by TuffRider except slightly thicker, more durable, contoured, and overall more visually appealing. It comes with 1/2" thick foam in the front and back pockets. I purchased a set of additional Mattes shims that fit perfectly. The foam does compress during the ride so the pad doesn't take up much space under the saddle. The fleece is fake but much softer than other synthetics I've tried. It isn't the itchy, tangled plastic stuff that you usually find and can go on your horse's back without issue. While the design is not horse show ready, the pad is attractive, and I wouldn't have any problems using it in a clinic or lesson with a visiting trainer.

I don't have any great pictures of it mostly because this horse was keen on never looking presentable . . .
also be aware that this baby is made looooong. My saddle is 17.5" for reference.

The cons with this pad have more to do with my preferences and specific situation. Construction wise, I would have preferred the pad to be a true half pad with the foam completely enclosed and the pockets on top. The foam shims have quite a bit of friction and make it harder to put the Mattes shims in. The other issue is the one I noted in my previous half pad hunting post. While the foam has held its shape over time, it compacts while riding, and this did not work for Lucie.

Overall, if you're looking for a flexible, attractive pad for a horse that needs a little bit of cushion, I recommend this one. According to the Etsy page, they may or may not be in the process of fully migrating to their own website, so apologies if the links take you nowhere. Just in case, here is a link to their direct website: Padded Ponies. Shop away!

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