A daily used and essential piece of kit… the saddle pad has evolved from the standard numnah style in black or brown to an array of shapes, fastenings and colours on offer to today’s discerning customer. Team EWW decided to road test two saddle pads from the well-known Team GB supplier NuuMed to see if their products could satisfy the demands of everyday and competition riding.
First up was the NuuMed HiWither Everyday Close Contact Saddle pad
NuuMed offers a range of exceptional ‘everyday’ saddle pads that are wool free, well-shaped and economical.
This version is made to the company’s HiWither design that sits up inside the saddle’s gullet to prevent any pressure points as it provides a more comfortable fit. It’s lightweight and made with quality quilt with D ring top straps, a shorter flap and different cut to accommodate close contact saddles.
‘The fit was great; I chose a large size for my 17.5” saddle. The girth straps were cleverly situated so that they sat slightly under the saddle flap. This meant the fit was streamlined and didn’t restrict my leg movement which is essential for a close contact saddle. The saddle pad didn’t move when I used it under training and hacking conditions. It’s a really well made product, that won’t affect the fit of your saddle or pinch the horse. The cotton lining was soft as was the binding so didn’t rub, unlike other brands I have used previously. The saddle pad washed and dried quickly. In my opinion the everyday close contact saddle pad is ideal for regular use, especially in a large yard where you may need to wash many saddle pads on a daily basis. It’s also smart enough for competition use and there is enough space to add embroidery if required. I was really impressed.’ Nikki EWW Tester
The HiWither Everyday Saddle pad – Close Contact is available in black, brown, white, grey, navy and red as standard in sizes small, medium, large and extra large, RRP £33. Other colours are available by special request, as is embroidery. Also available in a general purpose, forward cut or dressage style to suit your saddle shape.
Next we tried the HiWither Half Wool Saddle pad in a close contact style
This well priced and incredibly well made saddle pad is one of NuuMed’s most popular designs…and it’s easy to see why.
The saddle pad combines NuuMed’s legendary HiWither design and fit with 5oz quilt and lightweight
half wool lining over key pressure points whilst allowing the rider close lower leg contact. The British wool used is excellent quality and absorbs up to 30% of its own weight in moisture, to keep the horse dry and comfortable. As an extra benefit, for sensitive horses, the natural fibres of wool are much less likely to cause a skin reaction or allergies. It also comes with short D-ring straps for close contact saddles. It’s fully machine washable.
‘This saddle pad was a very similar style and cut to the everyday saddle pad. However, the addition of a wool lining led to a very different product. I found the fit and quality to be very high end and showed some really thoughtful and considered design features. The wool lining did make a difference to my cold backed horse. It also meant her back was less sweaty after work which is ideal in winter time. I also found the saddle pad to be great out hunting when you need something smart, plain in design and also capable of withstanding rigorous action. In addition, it meant my horse didn’t get a cold or sore back from pressure points. The saddle pad washed really well. I was concerned how the wool would wash but it still looks like new after a good few washes. The Velcro and fastenings are all great quality too. As a competition pad or one for more sensitive horses the NuuMed half wool saddle pad is a great option and offers fantastic quality that lasts. I am now switching to use NuuMed products on all my horses as these saddle pads really do tick all the boxes where other brands have failed me.’ Nikki, EWW Tester.
The HiWither Half Wool Saddle pad – Close Contact is available in black, white, brown and grey in sizes medium, large and extra large, RRP £68. Other colours are available by special request. It’s also ideal for embroidery.
For more information, see www.nuumed.com or call 01458 210324.