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Horse Riding Equipment Basics: Where To Start And Who Can Help You

If you are planning to go horse riding, be sure to check out this expert guide to learn what clothing and equipment are necessary and what is nice to have.

Choosing protective clothing will ensure that you are comfortable and safe, but you do not necessarily need to buy new clothes right away, unless you desire to, of course.

What Do You Need?

To be prepared for horseback riding, you will need the following equestrian products: a well-fitted riding hat (which complies with safety standards) and a pair of boots made of a smooth sole with a small heel. It is also recommended by experts that you invest in a pair of riding gloves as well as an undersuit so that you have a more comfortable and safe experience.

You may also select a pair of saddle pants or jodhpurs (riding trousers) rather than jeans or jogging bottoms so that you feel more comfortable while riding. However, there is no need to rush to purchase the most expensive and technically sophisticated products, if your products fit well and satisfy all safety requirements.

The Essentials

Riding Hats

If you’re not wearing the correct safety gear, such as a safety hat or helmet, you should not attempt to ride a horse. Many riding schools provide hats for beginners, but if you will be riding regularly, it is better to purchase your own as the hat will become more comfortable as it adjusts to each individual’s head shape.

Buy from a verified shop with a trained hat fitter, who can recommend an appropriate hat based on your needs. Always check the current safety standards.

Unless you know the history of the hat, it’s best to avoid buying a second-hand hat, even if it appears in perfect condition. If such a hat has been damaged, even by little things like dropping it, its protective features could be restricted.

A Pair Of Boots

The pressure of a horse on your toe can be painful and can cause significant damage if you are not wearing the proper boots. It is equally important that your stirrups have a secure grip and that your boots have a small heel so that your foot cannot slide through the stirrup and become stuck if you fall off.

There are two basic kinds of riding boots: long and short (jodhpur boots). Long riding boots protect the inside of your thighs from rubbing. Although leather versions are more expensive and more difficult to look after, rubber versions are significantly cheaper.

During the starting phase of learning how to use the legs to send directions to the horse, a new rider may find long boots quite restrictive. Ankle-length jodhpur boots provide a greater degree of ankle flexibility and are typically worn with half chaps to prevent rubbing on the inside of the calf.

The Tack

The use of a quality synthetic or leather saddle is imperative, both for the horse’s health and comfort, as well as that of the rider. Make sure to measure your horse accurately, or get the saddle fitted by a professional. 

Also, you will need a saddle pad so that the saddle will not rub or slide against the horse’s back or sides. A saddle girth secures the saddle firmly in place. You will also need reins, bridle, and stirrups. 


Riding Trousers

The right set of jodhpurs or breeches should be chosen according to their comfort in the saddle rather than their appearance on the ground.

Experts recommend buying a pair of jodhpurs that is made from a stretchy fabric that is easy to pull on and can fit comfortably around the knee and snugly under your bottom.

When starting you have the option of choosing any color, however, we suggest avoiding white, buff, and cream unless you plan to hunt or compete in the future.

Riding Gloves

Seasoned riders often develop calluses on their fingers, particularly between their little and ring fingers where the rein passes. Wearing riding gloves will help avoid blisters and will help to keep your hands clean and soft.

If you plan to take this route, it is worthwhile to buy a pair of gloves specifically designed for riding. They will be stretchy and comfortable and reinforced at the areas where you will hold the reins.

Body Protector

A body protector is intended to cushion and absorb the blow if a horse falls or kicks you, making inexperienced riders more confident. Like with the hats, these types of safety products are designed to be fitted by BETA-trained retailers.

The BETA 2009 Body Protector Standard complies with the European Standard EN 13158:2009, which is the lowest safety standard for first-time rider safety that you should buy. Getting one professionally fitted is advised by experts.

Finally, always remember that safety comes first, both for you and your horse. Work with your budget and consult professionals before buying any accessories for yourself or your horse. Always stick to all safety guidelines and procedures.

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