Professional's Choice SMx Air Ride™ Pad

The results of KSU’s year long study were finally published allowing Professional’s Choice to promote what they knew all along – that the SMx Air Ride™ Saddle pad was the best on the market!

Professional’s Choice, well know for scientifically testing its products, had already put the SMx Air Ride™ Saddle Pad through an exhausting study and series of tests using the Force Sensing Array (FSA) system and in rigorous field trials before its release in January of 2004. The results were even better than expected and showed positively that the SMx Air Ride Saddle Pad was beneficial for the horse.

The new study by KSU evaluated six leading saddle pads from various makers over the course of a year for properties such as compression resistance, pressure distribution and wicking. It was conducted by Erica D. Wesley, MS with oversight by Dr. Elizabeth McCullough, PhD Kansas State University Institute for Environmental Research. Again, the results were very favorable for Professional’s Choice and the SMx Air Ride Saddle Pad, while some of the other makers suffered some disappointing results.

The purpose of the study was to evaluate the performance of western equine saddle pads before and after extended use. The pads were tested new, then were used for several months and re-evaluated for the same properties after use. The FSA system containing 256 sensors was used to evaluate the pressure distribution under the pads and average level of peak pressures exerted during riding. Dead weight testing and heat and moisture evaporation tests were also used. Saddle pads with high peak pressures can be potentially harmful to the horse and those with poor wicking capabilities can lead to overheating.

The study came to the following conclusions about Professional’s Choice pads:

“The SMx Air Ride™ displayed superior performance with the lowest peak pressures and standard deviation. Additionally, this pad exhibited superior wicking properties both before and after use.” Finally, the Wrangler® SMx Air Ride™ , which showed the most improvement in pressure testing from before – to after use, and along with the SMx Air Ride™, exhibited the best performance in peak pressure elimination and pressure distribution after use. Both the SMx Air Ride™ and the Wrangler® pads use the same core material. The SMx Air Ride™ maintained the highest wicking rate of all pads.”

Professional’s Choice offers their patented SMx Air Ride core in a variety of saddle pads including western and English styles and offers a generous warranty that even includes a test ride.

As inventor and manufacturer of the original patented Sports Medicine Boot, the SMB Elite™ and the SMx Air Ride™ Saddle Pad, Professional’s Choice continually produces high quality products recognized by top trainers, professionals and everyday horseman alike.

Professional’s Choice – Leading the industry for the first 30 years was just the beginning.

Professional’s Choice, a manufacturer of equine and orthopedic products, is renowned in the equine industry for its innovative products. As inventor and manufacturer of the original patented Sports Medicine Boot, the SMB Elite™ and the SMx Air Ride™ Saddle Pad and authorized licensee for Wrangler Apparel Corp., manufacturing Wrangler® and Twenty X™ equine products, gear bags and luggage, Professional’s Choice has earned the respect of top trainers, professionals and everyday horseman alike. For more information, or, for the location of your nearest authorized dealer, please contact Professional’s Choice Sports Medicine Products, Inc., at 800-331-9421, or visit them on the web at

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