The theory of The British ''Spine Pad'' was to create a method to protect Soldiers exposed to direct sunlight and heat (mostly those assigned to hot desert climates). It was thought – since the 19th Century that direct exposure over prolonged periods lead to sunstroke (despite proper hydration and periodic cooling in shaded areas). Also, it was known that a typical British Soldier wore heavy Uniform material and carried many pounds of weight from weapon to personal equipment. All this was also a contributing factor to heat related illness. The Spine Pad was this developed in 1912. Made of lightweight cloth quilting, it was placed on the back (directly over the uniform), and tied down (from the front). In theory, the quilting was supposed to absorb the Sun's heat. By World War I, front and back examples were also developed. In some cases, Soldiers would douse these pads with cool water, using them as a form of cooling pad.