For the horse riding professionals, a good pair of riding boots is indispensable. Riding boots aid in providing a solid grip through the stirrup along with preventing the saddle leather from pinching the rider’s leg. Horse riding boots allow the rider to remain comfortable, protects their feet and prevents the rider’s feet from slipping out of the stirrups.
A quick glimpse into horse riding history demonstrates that riding boots have always been made with high heels to keep the foot from slipping. Anymore, riding boots are constructed in diverse styles and patterns for many different purposes. Show boots are not the same as those for field and hunting.
You’ll see there many kinds of horse riding boots. In a more general sense, they are usually separated into two categories: English and Western boots.
English equestrian boots are fabricated of high quality soft leather. These boots are available in different styles such as tall boots, which fit up to your knees and paddock boots which fit a little above your ankle. Long English boots are popular for competitions and available in a few different styles. In my opinion, they look quite graceful with that curved top. Long English boots are typically more stable, providing thorough protection to your lower leg as compared to the short ones. This is the reason why they are often used for dressage, jumping and cross-country riding.
Short boots, on the other hand, offer your lower leg more give. The well-known jodhpur boots and paddock boots are in this boot category. Jodhpur boots are normally worn with jodhpur pants which come down to the rider’s ankles. These boots are equipped with a zipper and elastic on the side along with a heel. Paddock boots use laces on the front and a heel.
photo credit: col&tasha
Western riding boots are available in both long and short types. These boots are made of leather with a solid heel and can be sold with an ornamental pattern at the calf area of the boots. They are generally made of cowhide but materials such as alligator or snakeskin can sometimes be used.
For more information about what the judge is looking for please see the Hunter Judge.