World Cup Polocrosse Horse Saddle Pad
When I was a little kid, riding a fat furry pony, I remember seeing a booth at a Pony Club Rally where I could toss golf balls on a black mat. They bounced on the ground, they bounced on the saddle pad, but they did not bounce on this black mat. Back then, I didn’t realize that I was like that golf ball and that black mat was the ThinLine pad protecting my pony’s back every time I bobbled around. Now it makes total sense!
After years of playing Polocrosse and Games, where I would jump on to my pony’s back while they gallop at full speed or lean off to pick things up off the ground, I am shocked my horses and ponies didn’t have more back issues. I guess in my early years, my equine companions could have thanked my mom for realizing just how important it was to protect their backs.
As I prepare for my second Polocrosse World Cup, I look closely at my horse, the horses I compete here in the US, and the horses I will be competing in South Africa this summer. As a competitor, I’m constantly looking for an advantage, a little boost that will give me a jump on the competition. No one can deny that horses are a huge part of the game of Polocrosse and without them, we cannot play. With a good, sound, strong horse, a player can be unstoppable. With a sore, sour horse that is hurting, a player will struggle or be lucky to even play the game.
In Polocrosse, we ask our horses to twist and turn, stop and go, juke and jive, burst and check, sprint and then settle. These maneuvers put a toll on our bodies and our horses. My back hurts sometimes, my horse’s back hurts sometimes. My legs hurt sometimes, and my horse’s legs hurt sometimes. Why not protect yourselves and your horses from the impact of our sport? Concussion and shock are hard on our bodies and our joints. Over time, we break down, and over a weekend, we get sore.
All that being said, I remember that little black mat from my childhood. The ThinLine pad that absorbs the shock and force of a hit. It will help my horses and me. In South Africa, our team will be given a pool of horses that will be ours for the entire competition. We want those horses to last and to perform at their best, every chukka, every game. There are very few things we have control over while we are there. Saddle pads, equipment, and leg protection are provided by our team, so we should take the best possible equipment we can get our hands-on.
The US Polocrosse Team is thrilled to be using ThinLine non-slip pads and contour pads here in the States and at the Polocrosse World Cup this summer in South Africa. There is no guarantee what the outcome of a game will be when the players take the field, but at least we know that our team has put in the work and has outfitted our horses to the best of our ability. Thank you ThinLine for creating incredible products for us! My horses, childhood ponies and future World Cup competition horses really appreciate it. Dori Johnson.
Photo Credits: Dori playing Polocrosse in ThinLine. The grey, Pepper, belongs to Garret Hamlin, who is a member of our World Cup Team. We swap horses sometimes to practice competing on horses other than our own. My mare is the dark bay. Her name is Zenith and she is a 9-year-old Thoroughbred/Australian Stock Horse cross. The Palamino, Passo, belongs to Debbie Harris in the UK and I played her horse when we went over there this past fall.
world cup polocrosse saddle pad