Equestrian Blog

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Equestrian Clothing - Riding Boots, Jodhpur Boots and Half Chaps

When you first start out in riding everyone is told to wear boots with a small heel. Many riding schools have riding boots that you can borrow for your first few lessons. Your safety is absolutely paramount so investing in boots designed specifically for riding should be something you do as early as possible. Although wellies and walking boots may look like they are suitable for riding they are most definitely not. Both have very thick treads which can easily trap in the stirrup and in the event of a fall this can result in serious injury.
There are many types of riding boot on the market so you can be sure to find a pair to suit your pocket and help make your riding as comfortable as possible. Years ago the only riding boots available in a suitable price range for a young novice rider were long rubber riding boots. Although these are still popular with many riders they can be hot in summer, sometimes too long in the leg for smaller jockeys and can make keeping your heels in the correct position difficult. The advantages of these though are they are inexpensive, tough and waterproof so keep your feet dry in wet weather. This makes them a good all round boot for yard and riding wear.
The more modern alternative are short leather jodhpur boots teamed with half chaps or gaiters. These short jodhpur boots allow more flexion of the ankle but the chaps still support the lower leg and give protection from stirrup leathers. Although initial outlay for the two items may be slightly higher than a rubber riding boot, chaps can often be kept for several years as a young rider's calf size will not increase as quickly as their foot.
The most expensive and in my opinion, best form of footwear for riding are long leather riding boots. These allow flexion of the ankle whilst still providing support to the whole foot and lower leg. They can last a lifetime if cared for correctly and are suitable for every riding activity you may wish to partake in. Although some leather boots are expensive there are many cheaper versions available which may fit a more modest budget, they are undoubtedly worth the money and can drastically improve your riding. This may sound impossible but wearing boots that actually allow your ankle to move freely will mean you can keep your heel down, which in turn keeps your lower leg more still. This will help to establish the rider in a more correct, thus secure position. Once a rider's position is secure, control of the horse is much easier resulting in a more positive outcome for horse and rider.
Specially designed equestrian clothing will make your riding as safe and comfortable as possible. Take your safety seriously as accidents can and do happen, horse riding is a high risk sport. Limit your chances of injury by always wearing correctly fitted safety clothing and buy the best equipment you can afford. It can quite literally save your life.

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