What’re riding boots?

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Riding boots are designed for equestrianism and come in different styles for various sports. They provide ankle support, prevent slipping in stirrups, and protect the rider’s leg. Different types include field, dress, paddock, and western boots. It’s important to try them on and ensure they fit well.

Riding boots are boots designed specifically for use in equestrianism. There are several styles of riding boots, customized for various equestrian sports, and riding boots are also sometimes used by motorcyclists, as many of the features designed for riding are also useful on a motorcycle. Equestrian supply stores generally offer a range of riding boots for their customers and these boots can also be ordered through supplier catalogs.

Several issues are of concern when designing riding boots. The first is security. Riding boots are designed in such a way that they cannot slip or catch in the stirrup and must also be strong enough to support the rider’s leg from being pinched in the stirrup leathers or injured in a collision with a fence, tree or other obstacle . Riding boots also provide ankle support for the rider, ensuring he can maintain a stable seat, and the toes are typically braced.

Most riding boots look very similar to conventional boots until you take a closer look at the heel and sole. The sole tends to be smooth, so it slides easily into the stirrup, and the heel is high and wide to provide support and create a wedge so your foot can’t slip through the stirrup. The top of the boot can also be cut away to allow for more flexibility around the knee, especially in the case of boots designed for jumping, where the rider assumes a semi-rounded-over position.

Field boots and dress boots are both high, typically reaching nearly the knee. Lace-up or zip-up field boots, allowing for greater flexibility around the ankle so the rider can easily change positions in the saddle, to move to a jump or hunting post. Dress boots are stiffer and designed for flat riding only. Paddock boots, also called Jodphur boots, are more casual riding boots that only come to the ankle and are less common in competition. Western boots are very similar to dress boots, except for a more pronounced heel and slightly different aesthetic.

When selecting riding boots it is vital to try them on and ideally bring the stirrups you use to ensure the boots fit well. Equestrians should try bending through a series of motions in the riding boots, to ensure they have enough flexibility, and should take note of any discomfort. If your riding boots pinch or feel uncomfortable in the shop, they can become painful during a riding session. Riding boots should also feel snug and supportive, rather than loose, as loose-fitting boots can interfere with controls on the horse or safety in the saddle.

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