Saddle Fitting Solutions

What is ThinLine?

ThinLine is a thin, shock-absorbing, non-slip breathable foam.

Where is the ThinLine?

Built into every pad, it gives you and your horse the best in comfort and protection, right where you need it.

ThinLine Brown Bareback Pad 2IJKTL 3897 copy 1Comfortable ThinLine Saddle Pad


Saddle fitting solutions are easy and with ThinLine saddle pad shim inserts,

you will double your results by saddle fitting with the best therapeutic materials.

English Booster Stacked Shim Design EnglishPad webSaddle Fitting Solutions

Common Fitting Problems

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  • High Withers: Add front shims to any pad.
  • Hollow or Sway  Backs: Add bridging shims.
  • Rider Balance: Adding a pair of shims to one side can fix balance issues.
  • Saddle Balance: front or rear shims, depending on your issue.
  • Saddle Slippage: Generally no shims are needed, the ThinLine Pad alone will solve this.
  • Saddle Pad Slippage: Generally your tree is too wide. Add a full length shim.
  • Equine or Rider Back Soreness: No shims needed, ThinLine protects both.
  • Equine Asymmetry: place both of the pair of shims on the hollow side.
  • Kissing Spine Relief: Add a full length shim to any ThinLine pad.
  • Treeless Saddle Pad Comfort: Add a full length shim to any ThinLine Pad.

Shims Grouping web Booster Pack Shims Alt 1200


Stacking and layering saddle fitting shims.

  • ThinLine pads can accommodate up to three shims in a single location.
  • The shim pocket is not divided, allowing for the precise placement of shims.
  • Layering sets of shims creates an even transition for major saddle fit issues.
  • Shims are easily trimmed with scissors.
  • Trim to Fit shims are 3/16″ thick

custom saddle fit shims inserts

Saddle fitting with this shock-absorbing foam provides balance, comfort, and protection for the horse and rider. All that’s left is choosing the perfect pad that fits your saddle and the style that fits your life!

Read on for more detailed saddle fitting information…


ThinLine is the only equestrian product endorsed by back surgeons, master saddlers & veterinarians.

7055 on black horse 2 WEB Western felt liner booster shim

Solutions for the High Wither horse:

Our saddle pads come with a 4 inch wither profile with one exception:  Pro-Tech Western series.  All other pads work equally well on peaked withers and average horses.


Most high wither saddle fit issues are solved with a pad and a set of front shims.  ThinLine is sewn to the pad, supporting the saddle, and providing both gullet (spine) and wither clearance.  If you have a horse with very narrow shoulders in addition to a high wither, add a bridging shim to create a smooth transition and support even contact behind the shoulder.

7334 closeupsaddle HCLifestyleSolutions for the Mutton Wither horse:

Generally, saddle movement is the challenge with low withers. Saddles pitch, roll, or slip forward. Non-Slip might be the first reason you purchase ThinLine but the noticeable improvement in comfort for your horse and the stability of the saddle will create more joy in your riding. 

Our Western Felt Pads are a favorite for low withers but all styles of ThinLine pads will be effective.  Unless your saddle is bridging or too low in the rear, you most likely will not need saddle fitting shims.


western felt shock absorbing pad



Solutions for saddles that bridge or horses with a sway back:

Any ThinLine Pad and Bridging Shims are the answer. Stack them then remove layers as your horse develops. It is not uncommon to see horses develop more topline in a ThinLine. Usually, riders are able to eventually remove the bridging shim.  To retain the good muscle on the top line you’ve developed, continue using your ThinLine pad without the shims.  

Solution for balance issues, including rear riser pads:

If you need to lift the back (cantle) of your saddle, adding a rear shim to a ThinLine saddle pad is your answer. You may stack up to 3 sets of ThinLine shims to balance and protect.


Solutions for asymmetrical (crooked) horses and riders:

All of our shims are sold in pairs. If you have a crooked horse, simply place the pair on one side for severe issues, or just use one shim.  Our research shows horses lift their backs while going in ThinLine, resulting in eventual straightness.  Keep checking on your horses’ way of going and remove the shim once they are straight, continue using your ThinLine pad.

Solutions for treeless saddles and horses in intense work

ThinLine works well with treeless saddles by providing lift, support, integrity, and shock absorption in a soft flexible product.

For horses in intense work, we recommend using the full length shim, allowing owners to double the comfort and protection.

Booster Pack Shims Alt 1200

8BwebEnglish Booster Stacked Shim Design EnglishPad web


Master Saddlers and ThinLine developed a shimming system designed to create custom saddle fit while also providing shock absorbing therapeutic benefits. ThinLine saddle fitting shims are made from the same trademark foam found on ThinLine pads. In addition, shims are easily inserted or removed and stay in place during riding and washing. 

Now adjusting your saddle also includes more comfort. 


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Inserting shims into your pad

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Easy to Install. Shims remain in place during riding and washing. Shims are invisible, inside of your pad.


Western Ranch Saddle Pad Front Shim

Front shim slips in to solve wither problems.

Western felt liner booster shim
Create bridging fit; shim fills in gaps.

The full open panel allows you to place shims exactly where you need them.


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7055 Booster shim inserting WEB

ThinLine receives endorsements from top riders, publications, surgeons, Saddle Fitters, Veterinarians, Chiropractors, Equine Massage Therapists, and of course horses and riders.

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SMS master saddle fitters

What Master Saddlers are Saying about ThinLine:

So many horses improve top-line muscle tone by using ThinLine Master Saddlers such as Cordia Person (CSF) educate saddle fitters on how to shim with ThinLine.  For custom saddles, fitters like Cordia, recommend  ThinLine Pads to protect backs and keep saddles fitting until the next check.  ThinLine will not alter the fit of a custom saddle.  ThinLine pads come with a pocket to add shims.


Kissing Spine Disease

Solutions for Equine Sore Backs, Veterinarians endorse ThinLine:

 -often the culprit of poor saddle fit- sore backs are one of the primary reasons for soundness issues. Veterinarians recommend ThinLine for horses with sore backs and as a preventative measure and as part of their therapy. Burlington Equine Veterinary Services VT: specializing in KSD Kissing Spine Disease treatment, among others recommend using a ThinLine pad.