When you’re looking for the best jumping numnahs to suit you and your horse, there are a few more things to consider than just the cut and colour. You may have a preferred shape — more square or high at the wither — but it’s important that the pad will hold its shape, whatever it is, especially if it’s going to be subject to daily use. Finding one that wears well, has good quality stitching and stays looking smart after repeated trips through the wash is also a real bonus. Finally, consider whether you’ll benefit from any anti-slip additions and whether you’d prefer these to be on the upper or lower side of the saddle pad, so between your horse and the pad or the pad and the saddle.
Horse & Hound has been working with a number of professional riders, trainers and yards to put a range of products to the test in a busy yard environment. And here are the results…
Horse & Hound’s pick of the best jumping numnahs 2019
*BEST IN TEST & BEST VALUE*
“I really put this numnah through the mill by using it multiple times a day in many different scenarios and it proved very hard wearing and never lost its shape. It looked very smart on my horses and although the fabric is thick, it wasn’t rigid. I also found that it never picked up any hair.”
“I like how it is built up at the withers and it doesn’t have loops for the girth straps to go through, instead they attach onto the D-ring, which is functional. However, the girth straps are fixed rather than Velcro, which makes it a bit trickier to get the numnah off quickly. It is hard wearing and isn’t showing any scuff marks, which is great considering I’ve used it daily.”
“It does have a shape to the wither, but overall I found it a bit flimsy. It hasn’t worn or washed very well and some of the stitching is starting to go. There is quite a lot of natural padding, so I can see why it is used for cross-country, and it stayed in place well when in use. I like the fact that it has anti-slip between the saddle and numnah, rather than the numnah and horse.”
“The girth straps are Velcro, which is a bonus for me but there isn’t much Velcro on the strap. It’s also not as high cut at the wither as some of the other numnahs and it is slightly shaped at the front, but not as much as others. It washed OK, but is not particularly hard wearing as there is some stitching that is coming undone on the binding, but it has a useful non-scratch panel by the girth.”
“It’s not cut as high as I’d like around the wither, but it’s adequate and it sits well. It’s soft to touch with soft binding, and it’s not overly thick. It stayed in place and didn’t rub, and it has washed and worn well. The stitching is also of good quality.”
Meet the product tester
Sam Jennings is a professional event rider who started her eventing career in 1999 as a young rider and was shortlisted for the British team that year. Sam successfully competes a range of event horses up to advanced level from her friendly, professional yard in Kent.
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Horse & Hound is in the process of testing a wide range of equestrian kit, clothing and equipment, the results of which will be published on HorseandHound.co.uk
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