America's Top Equestrian Stars Use Amazing New Product
Welcome back to our periodic feature about a product, service or concept taking the horse world by storm. Only on DressageDaily.com will you get the inside scoop on these movers and shakers in our growing 'Great Finds' Section. Our latest installment is a behind the scenes look at ThinLine Inc., the company that produces the saddle pads and boots that are the rage among international riders.
Olympic medalists Steffen Peters, Carol Lavell, Chris Kappler and Beezie Madden use ThinLine® products. We wanted to know, what makes superstars incorporate these products into their carefully managed stables?
Saddler Jen Thackery explains, “I have tried the [ThinLine®] pad on both of my Thoroughbreds and they rounded up quicker, were more responsive to the aids, and I could sit the trots much easier.”
Thackery’s experience is echoed by hundreds of riders, from Olympians to amateurs, and is the reason that Elaine Lockhead, President of ThinLine Inc., purchased the company two years ago.
See what exciting prizes will be offered at the ThinLine booth at the Rolex las vegas World Cup Final, and the Rolex Kentucky Three Day Event!
Although Elaine graduated from Duke University and spent her early career in the fast paced world of advertising, her love of horses drew her back into the industry. For fourteen years she ran a large riding program in North Carolina and competed through Intermediaire I.
It was while she was riding Lipizzaners that she inadvertently discovered ThinLine®. She remembers, “I was riding these wonderful baroque horses, but was having a horrible time with saddle slippage problems and had resorted to using foregirths and cruppers, which the horses hated. I was riding at a barn where I came across an old piece of ThinLine® so I tried it. Voila! No more saddle slippage.”
What first attracted Elaine to the product turned out to be just one of the benefits. “As I continued to use the product I noticed how much better my horse was going and how much it easier it was to sit the trot. When I discovered that ThinLine® was no longer available due to a variety of business issues I decided this product had to be back on the market. I have been a rider most of my life and had never seen a product do so much as a ThinLine® saddle pad could do, and all without any negatives.” So Elaine contacted the former owners and arranged to buy ThinLine Inc. And the response has been immediate.
High Tech Solutions For Equine Comfort
The positive response from riders as diverse as hunter legend Geoff Teall to endurance champion Valerie Kanavy as well as dressage riders like JJ Tate, Marco Bernal, Cesar Parra and Shannon Dueck has truly encouraged Elaine. “I feel so fortunate that I came across this great product. It really is tremendous technology,” she says.
ThinLine® pads are different from other pads because they incorporate a unique, open cell technology that moves shock, weight and heat laterally along the pad without compressing. The result is 95% shock absorption.
“This encourages your horse to move through his back,” Elaine explains. “We get calls and emails literally everyday with stories of how ThinLine® saddle pads have improved their horse’s movement or their ability to sit their horse’s gaits. These riders tell us they have little or no back pain and that their horses are working better and happier. It’s a two-way street of comfort, ideal for preventing problems or resolving challenges.”
USET Member Schuyler Riley explains, “Nottingham’s back was in a lot of pain…He jumps hard and uses his whole body. At his first show in the ThinLine® pad, he jumped three days in a row without having a pole down…two weeks later a bone scan showed his back to be pain free! I even noticed a difference in my back. I now plan on using ThinLine® on all my top horses!”
The trademarked open cell technology also makes ThinLine® pads 100% breathable so heat and moisture are not trapped under the saddle. An anti-microbial agent is also infused into the pad. Because ThinLine® doesn’t compress or slip, pressure points created by movement or position changes in the saddle are eliminated. “All of the challenges associated with working muscles are nearly eliminated,” Elaine says. “And because the pad returns to its original shape immediately, it is very durable and can be used on multiple horses each day.”
ThinLine® is available in two thicknesses and in a variety of shapes, including the Ultra ThinLine Dressage Pad®, the Sheepskin Comfort Pad and a western pad.
Taking the Benefits to the Next Level
With so many great benefits, it made sense to apply ThinLine® to other important pieces of tack. Earlier this year, ThinLine Inc. introduced protective leg boots and girths suitable for a variety of disciplines.
“We have a dressage girth that is already very popular,” Elaine says. It’s breathable, non-slip and anti-microbial like the pads and is available in variety of sizes and colors.
Dressage riders have also been snapping up the ThinLine Bell Boots® that are lined at the coronary band with soft sheepskin. The ThinLine Sport Boots®, available in front and hind sizes, are also very popular with the dressage crowd. And the Grand Prix jumper riders like Kent Farrington love the ThinLine Schooling Boots®. “They are super lightweight, but very effective at reducing shock,” Elaine says.
Fun at the World Cup and Beyond
“I am very grateful that our company has grown so quickly and that so many world-class riders love the products,” Elaine says. In order to give back and to have a little fun, the ThinLine® team tries to incorporate fun and games at booths at shows and expos around the country.
Stop by the booth at the 2007 World Cup Finals and at the Rolex Three Day Event and you can win big prizes—a golf vacation or your choice of two saddle packages complete with Kentaur saddles, ThinLine® pads, girths and boots.
There’s also going to be a Richard Spooner autograph signing in Las Vegas; check in at the booth for the details.
Visit www.thinlineinc.com for more information.