I tried for months to get my saddles to fit my mare with half pads, everything from Oglivy to ECC, and thin line. EVERYTHING put too much pressure on her wither and she would do all kinds of strange things.....shake, twitch her withers and buck.. I succumbed to having a wool flocked saddle made for her, now all I need is a light saddle pad. I use Back on Track since she is older.
A saddle pad should be used as a temporary aid until your saddle fitter can help with the adjustment. I think it somewhat incongruous that jumper riders in particular tend to pile on the saddle pads under their close contact saddles – which negates the concept of “close contact”…. The problem, unfortunately, is that so many jumper riders tend to settle their saddles fairly far forward, which causes their saddles to be unbalanced. The cantle is then quite a bit lower than the pommel, which of course justifies the use of so many pads to even out the position of the saddle, with the result that essentially, the rider is inches away from the horse’s back. In this case, the saddle pad are not necessary.
The saddle pad can serve as an extra thickness, for horses with back problems, in this case, the saddle pad il necessary for the good of the horse.
Good question, bye.