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Guide To Jodhpur Boots!

There are many different types of horse riding boots on the market and jodhpur boots are amongst the most popular. Jodhpur boots were originally designed to be worn with jodhpurs and are ankle length which makes them easy to pull on and off, as well as offering a greater degree of flexibility than long riding boots. They were originally worn with a strap fitting around the back of the boot and securely fastened in place with a buckle at the side. This traditional style is still popular with riders today, but there are plenty of alternatives available, depending on personal choice. Jod boots with safety caps are very practical around horses! Boots that are laced up the front are generally known as paddock boots, some boots have front zip fastenings while others have zipped located at the rear. The most popular styles are those that feature elasticated sides, which make them easier to get on and off…particularly useful for younger riders. These boots are extremely versatile and you’ll find they look just as good with jeans when you’re out and about in town!Choosing Your Jodhpur Boots When it comes to shopping for jod boots it’s important you take your time and make the right decision on the boots best suited to your circumstances and style of riding. Safety around horses is always key, which is why many opt for a pair of boots that are fitted with reinforced steel toe caps, designed to help keep toes protected should your horse stand on your foot. Then there are everyday boots that can be made from either leather or more usually a synthetic leather. These are great if you need one pair of boots that you can wear to do jobs around the yard and ride in as they tend to be a little more durable and easier to clean. Top of the range boots can feature extras such as waterproof membranes, padded ankles, Thinsulate linings, full grain leather uppers and dozens of technological advancements all aimed to optimise wearer fit and comfort.  

Spring Is Here!

Yippee…the clocks went forwards yesterday, which means lots of lighter evenings. Great news for horse owners, as it means we can actually see our horses in the day light, something which has become a distant memory in the last few months!   Hairy Beasts Horses everywhere are starting to shed their winter coats and at the end of a good grooming session most horse owners come out of the stable hairier than their horse. For those with clipped out horses the task in hand isn’t quite as bad, although the inside of their rugs will probably see a build-up of hair, which will need brushing off before you even think about washing them!   It’s Nearly Show Time The show season is due to start soon, so if you haven’t already made a start, now is an excellent time to start getting your horse fit and the pair of you ready to show the world what you’re made of. It’s a great idea to book some lessons to get you both focused and prepared for a busy season…it’s true that practice does make perfect! Don’t forget that if your show jacket is looking a little shabby, or your jodhpurs aren’t quite as comfortable as they used to be…we’ve plenty of new ones to choose from at prices to suit all budgets.     Paddock Maintenance Paddock maintenance will have undoubtedly slipped during the dark, cold and wet winter months. Now’s the time to make the most of the lighter evenings by poo picking, fence mending, harrowing, reseeding and rolling. Do you need some extra electric fencing so you can strip graze your paddock once the grass starts to appear? Now’s also a good time for picking up any litter that’s blown into the field and generally making it as safe as possible for your horse.   Stable Spring Clean? A glimpse of the sunshine might just inspire you to give your stable a bit of a spring clean. Pick a sunny day to get rid of the cobwebs and disinfect your stable so that it can air and dry out before your horse comes back in from the field. This will reduce dust in the stable helping to keep your horse’s respiratory system clear and healthy. It’s also a good time to get your winter horse rugs washed, dried and stored safely away ready for next winter.   ‘Feel Good’ Time! Like many outdoorsy people, I’ve been literally counting down the days to when the weather turns warmer, the evenings get lighter, the grass begins to grow in the horse field and my horse can go out naked…without a rug on. For most horse owners, this is payback for getting through a pretty dismal winter dealing with lots of mud, high winds and wet rugs. Here’s to lots of lovely, long evening hacks after work and good luck to anyone who's about to start the show season!  

Ehning secures last-gasp jumping victory at Saut Hermès

The Saut Hermès Jumping International tournament in Paris came to a thrilling close yesterday as Germany's Marcus Ehning and his stallion Cornado NRW snatched victory by just three hundredths of a second. The Grand Palais in the French capital played host to some stunning feats of equestrianism over the weekend, so it was only fitting that the much-anticipated finale – the Grand Prix Hermès – should come right down to the wire. Jump-off Under the beautiful spring time sunshine, Ehning and Cornado NRW thrilled the sold-out arena by taking victory in the jump-off against the much-fancied home favourites Patrice Delaveau and Lacrimoso HDC. Only four riders made it through to the jump-off, including Great Britain's Laura Renwick on her gelding Bintang II. Renwick eventually finished a respectable fourth with two poles down at the death. Third place was taken by Katharina Offel of the Ukraine on her horse Lacontino. Although Delaveau and Lacrimoso initially laid down a fantastic clear round in an impressive time of 37.62 seconds, Ehning once again demonstrated his class and composure by guiding Cornado NRW round in 37.59 seconds, just shading the competition. Nail-biting finish Ehning's winning performance may have disappointed some of the partisan home crowd who were eagerly cheering on Frenchman Delaveau, but the impeccable manner of the victory was a joy to behold for everyone in attendance. This year's Saut Hermès Jumping International deserved a nail-biting finish and credit must go to all the riders who competed in the jump-off for delivering first-class entertainment. After securing the top spot, Ehning said: 'I am very happy with my horse, he did an incredible first round. I saw Patrice's round in the jump-off, he was fast, but I still thought I had a chance. 'Kathi Offel gave me the right tip for the five strides to the penultimate vertical and it all worked out very well today.'

10% Off Yard & Tack Room Products (online only, 11th – 17th March 2013)

Spring is finally here! With the return of lighter evenings and (relatively) milder weather, we can be forgiven for feeling like woodland creatures at this time of year, as we blinkingly emerge from our hibernation-like winter state! The change of seasons brings with it new promise and a new sense of purpose. Competitive riders are especially motivated by the new 'season', although to them, the word 'season' is not necessarily applied to spring per se but the show season, event season, or any other competitive season, defined by their chosen discipline. Spring is also a time of opportunity for non-competitive riders, as the better conditions make hacking opportunities more frequent and longer. Let's face it; things are just more fun, however you want to ride, when it's not cold and dark most of the time! To help you get organised as you make the most of the new season's opportunities, we're offering 10% off our prices for Yard & Tack Room items sold online, all week! I suppose that when you think of Yard & Tack Room, the first image it conjures is of forks and shovels – they are, after all, the items you spend the most time with, when you're doing your jobs in and around the stables. Together with their natural companions, skips and collectors, after a winter of heavy use, perhaps your mucking out tools (possibly even including your wheelbarrow) are beginning to show signs of wear and tear and are ready for being replaced. More likely, you'll be considering ways to improve your 'stable environment' after a winter of frustration with certain aspects of the yard. Perhaps the time has come to address the way you store your equipment or update some of the necessary accessories that every yard needs to run smoothly and efficiently. At this time of year, many riders' horizons are set far beyond the confines of your stable yard. A new season (however you choose to define it) brings with it the opportunity to get out and about and if that means travelling to shows, events, farm rides or any other type of expedition, there's a whole wealth of things to prepare for. For example, in recent years, we've noticed that the folding wheelbarrow has become a hugely popular addition to a growing number of horseboxes all over the country! In addition to these savings on a wide variety of products, all products priced £1 or above will also earn you Rider Rewards, which can be used to pay for all or part of your future purchases – just make sure you use your site login to claim the points! If you can't remember what your password is, don't worry! Go to our 'Forgot Your Password?' page and send us the email address you used when you registered and we'll send you a link to reset your password. Thanks for reading, Paul. PS Thanks also to Izabela Motyl for supplying the fantastic photograph. I hope it really gets you in the mood for some springtime riding!