The 5 Best Saddle Pads For Trail Riding: Guide And Review [2023]

Last Updated on June 20, 2023 by Georgie Smith

When you enjoy trail riding, there is nothing as relaxing and peaceful as being in the outdoors taking in nature while riding horseback. Not only is the type of saddle crucial, but, the saddle pad is just as vital. If you have a saddle that fits well, you may only need a simple saddle pad.

However, adding too much bulk with padding can cause your saddle not to fit correctly creating pressure points.  If you have problems with your horse’s back, such as sore spots or high withers, padding is vital.

You also may need saddle pads that are designed just for your horse to alleviate, if nothing else, lessen the pain. The pad you choose will depend in part on how disciplined the rider is or the function of your horse.

In other words, if the pad you use causes the horse discomfort, you would not want to go on long or strenuous rides. If you have ever had lower back pain, then you can understand just how painful your horse’s back would be if there were issues.

Then, add a saddle padsaddle, and human on top of those and you get the picture, right? This article is all about choosing the proper saddle pad for you and your horse’s trail riding experience. Our job is to narrow down the five best saddle pads to make your shopping experience easier.

The order of the following products is in no way our way of saying one is better than the other. That is not our job. We will, however, find the five best items for you to see which is right for you.

Basic Comparison:


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Saddle Pad

Saddle Pad

Color - ‎Black

 Dover Saddlery

Weight - 0.76 Kilograms

Material - Poly with poly fill

OrthoRide Saddle Pad

OrthoRide Saddle Pad

Color - Desert Rose

Southwestern Equine

Weight - ‎2 Kilograms

Size - 31 x 30

Half Saddle Pad

Half Saddle Pad

Color - Rose

‎ECP Equine 

Weight - 16 Ounces

Size - ‎8.5 x 22"

Here are the Best Five Saddle Pads Available on Amazon Today:

1. Dover Saddlery Quilted All-Purpose Saddle Pad


The first item in this review and guide is the Dover Saddlery Quilted Non-Slip Dressage Saddle Pad. This padding is simple to attach to your horse’s body safely and securely. What that means is if you and your horse are competitive in jumps, racing, dressage practice, or shows, you will be secure.

The item fits snugly but is also pliant and flexible for adjusting for comfort.

Be sure to click here to go to the product page on Amazon. There you will find additional information as well as a safe and secure ordering process.

Good Stuff

  • A Vented Rubber Bottom Layer
  • Assist With Keeping The Saddle Centered
  • Lightweight- 1.6 pounds
  • Reliable Maker

Bad Stuff

  • A bit pricey

2. OrthoRide Correction


The unique design of this OrthoRide Correction Saddle Pad is for the well-being of your horse. There are two large additional memory foam padded areas right below where the rider’s knees grip the saddle. The purpose is to ensure a comfortable fit after several hours of riding.

Buying this pad is simple to do. Click here to go to the Amazon page to place your order as well as see the item.

Good Stuff

  • Made in the USA
  • Works well for Horses of All Ages
  • The Perfect Match for High Withered Horses who Suffer from Saddle Rubs
  • Shock Absorption and Perfect for Young Horses Still Developing

Bad Stuff

  • Stitching Appears Weak

3. ECP All Purpose Diamond Quilted Cotton English Half Saddle Pad


With this item, the ECP All Purpose Diamond Quilted Cotton English Half Saddle Pad, you get customization in many ways. This saddle pad has four pockets, two in the front, and two in the rear. Each has three memory foam shims for you to add to the comfort level of your liking.

The unique design of this OrthoRide Correction Saddle Pad is for the well-being of your horse. There are two large additional memory foam padded areas right below where the rider’s knees grip the saddle. The purpose is to ensure a comfortable fit after several hours of riding.

All you need to do is subtract or add what amount of cushion to alleviate the pressure points and change the fit to meet your needs.

Do you like this item and want more information? You can find all the colors as well as other vital information by clicking here.

Good Stuff

  • Excellent Shock Absorption
  • Great for Numerous Riding Styles
  • Numerous Colors Available
  • Weighs only 1.6 pounds

Bad Stuff

  • Velcro Could Be Stronger

4. Vast Horse Basic Dressage Saddle Pad With Fleece Lined Horse Cover


Next is this Vast Horse Basic Dressage Saddle Pad with a Fleeced Lining. This item is an excellent choice for most weather climates throughout the year. Not only does it insulate your horse, but it also will pull the excess moisture and heat away from the horse in hot weather. It is comfortable, easy to adjust, and easy on your horse’s back.

While not every product is going to be a winner for everyone, this item is an excellent choice for the average rider. Click Here to see the pictures and learn more about the item.

Good Stuff

  • Provides Ample Coverage
  • Fits a Standard Dressage Saddle
  • Sturdy and Durable Stitching
  • Temperature Balancing
  • Lightweight- 0.8 ounces

Bad Stuff

  • Size is Small
  • Too Thin for Some Consumers

5. NRS 5 Star Equine 5 Star Natural 32 in x 30 in Saddle Pad


Last on the list is an excellent product, the NRS 5 Star Equine Natural Saddle Pad. This item is from a well-respected family-owned business straight out of Arkansas. The 5-star Equine Squire Roper offers everything a rider could ask for from padding.

The material and design are strong whereas others are weak. Meaning, the design is so good that it can go the long haul. The size is 32 inches by thirty inches and is pure virgin wool felt material. Not only is it durable, but it is easy on the eyes.

If you want high quality and the price is within your budget, you will not go wrong with this product. Click here for more details and place your safe and secure order today.

Good Stuff

  • Highly Functional and Basic
  • Great Quality and Price
  • Comes in Various Sizes
  • Square Roper Style

Bad Stuff

  • May Be a Bit Costly for Beginners

There you have the five top-selling saddle pads available today.

In the Beginning:

Saddle “blankets” came onto the scene when horses became domesticated. The blanket was the only material available to use on the horse to protect the rider. Once that role shifted, and the horse became a “work and performance ” animal, the needs changed.

To protect both the rider and the horse, the need for improved riding equipment became unavoidable. Thus, the making of the saddle pad and the rest is history, literally. Through the years, advanced expertise and technology play a significant role in the fabrication and design of saddle pads.

Here is when the saddle pad evolved to form and functionality. Aside from keeping the saddle dry and absorbing sweat, the real purpose was for the rider and horse’s spine to have protection.

The Basic Options for Saddle Pads

The function of the saddle pad is to offer a cushion under the saddle that will lessen the impact between the horse’s spine and rider. A pad will also distribute the weight as well. The material usually used to craft padding is a blend of various types.

Often it will be a combination of polyester fibers with cotton over a layer of thin polyfill. The majority of saddle pads are both durable and washable materials. Depending on which material the manufacturer use, most pads supply more features to its design.

Generally, the typical designs of saddle pads are English and Western due to their heritage. The way the padding slides under the saddle is the main difference between the two. While Western saddles are heavier and larger, they each have their perks.

The design is so that the weight spreads evenly over the larger region of the horse’s back. The Western pad resembles a blanket in that it is square or rectangular in shape and is wool or something similar. (learn more)


Q: What if the pad is bulky?

A: If you add an overabundance of bulk with the padding, you will cause the saddle not to fit well. That is not only a danger to the horse but, to the rider as well.

Q: How do I choose what size pad to buy?

A: Determining the size of a saddle pad, you will want to match the pad up with the size of the seat with the type of saddle. You will measure the distance a screw-head on the pommel side to the precise middle of its cantle.


Riding horses is one of the most enjoyable and relaxing outdoor recreations there is on and around farms. Having a saddle that fits just right should be your top priority. If you only need simple padding, try a dressage pad. However, remember not to add too much bulk to prevent spinal discomfort to your horse.

Do you have more information we could add to this article on the best saddle pads? Please comment below, and we will get back to you. While you are here, please “like and share” our work to help us help others.

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