Choosing the right clothing serves several important purposes when you are going horse-riding; this is more than just clothing to keep you warm on a cold or windy day.So when it comes to choosing the right garments, what do you need to keep in mind? We take a look at some of the obvious (and not-so-obvious) considerations below.
- Size and Sex
Like any clothing, you need to make sure you choose the right size – which can be particularly important for children, who may still be growing quite quickly. By opting for a size that is a comfortable fit, you can avoid any unwelcome rubbing due to the motion of your horse, while protecting yourself against friction with the saddle at the same time.
For adults, selecting the right styles for your particular gender help to make sure they are tailored for the shape of your body, further enhancing the fit to keep you comfortable while in the saddle.
- Staying Safe
A significant proportion of equestrian clothing is about staying safe, and that includes your choice of riding hat to protect against impacts if you suffer a fall at any point. Body protectors give a similar layer of safety to your back and ribcage, helping to absorb the shock upon landing – and, like other equestrian apparel, they are available in both male and female designs to suit your natural body shape. If you are likely to be riding along public roads or in other places where it’s important to be seen, the usual plain black clothing might not be the preferable option; in these instances, you can choose from a broad range of high-visibility gear to grab the attention of onlookers. Once again, these garments are typically available in children’s sizes as well, allowing you to keep your little ones safe while they are learning to control their animal on a public road.
- Competition Clothing
If you are entering an equestrian competition, clothing takes on an extra dimension, as you’ll want to not only stay safe, but also look the part.
This is where the sleek, smart black clothing most commonly associated with equestrianism comes to the fore, and depending on your event, you might want to choose different garments or styles.
Helmets are again a key component in your outfit, particularly for show jumpers, but in more sedate events such as dressage, you may want to opt for something a little smarter. Dress shirts and jackets, along with decorative riding crops, can all add a new dimension to your look, and make the desired impact on the judges in the process.
- The Personal Touch
Whatever you need, there should be several different colours and designs to choose from – even including pink high-visibility vests if you’re not a fan of the usual yellow colour scheme.Be adventurous in your choices, particularly if you are riding for fun rather than for competition, and you can put your own personal spin on the equestrian experience and make sure you truly enjoy every moment in the saddle.
About the author
Melissa Hathaway is a keen horse-rider with interests both in equestrian clothing, and in equestrianism in general; she lives and rides in the Heywood area.