Computer technology is now available to accurately determine the fit of a saddle with or without a pad. A computerized saddle pad consisting of a thin cloth with built in pressure sensors is placed underneath the saddle with any pad combination desired. The horse is then connected to a laptop computer with a quick-release long line. A color image clearly displays on the screen high and low pressure points. The horse can walk, trot, canter or jump while connected, though the majority of the information needed can be obtained at a walk and a trot. If you use the computer while the horse is being ridden – you will have a better understanding of the effects of different pads. Computer science technology is rapidly advancing creating modern, innovative solutions for both simple and complex problems. This particular computerized software/hardware device allows us to better understand the impact of pressure and the injury it causes due to something as simple as poor saddle fit.
This technology is not generally available and it is not necessary to use it in order to fit a saddle well – but may be a great solution with long term advantages.