Equestrian Footwear - From Wellies to Long Boots
There are many different types of equestrian footwear to choose from. Long gone are the days where it was a simple choice between jodhpur boots and long boots. Now there is a huge choice encompassing a variety of footwear styles, but all providing different benefits.
Equestrian footwear is still a growing market. Each season there are new boots which have been designed to maximise performance and comfort for the rider. Riding boots including jodhpur, long and country boots are all worthy inclusions in the equestrian wardrobe as are boots for the stable, wellingtons, muckers and ‘classic boots’.
Personally, I nearly have every style! These have been accumulated over many years of testing various brands. Each pair of boots work slightly differently giving me the choice that I need to perform various tasks.
I own jodhpur boots, long boots and country boots, all of which I regularly ride in. My favourites are my country boots- as they provide comfort in both summer and winter and if protected properly, can also be used to do mucking out and other jobs around the stable. As these are my most versatile riding boots they certainly get the most wear.
Both my jodhpur boots and my long boots are saved for competitions and lessons. Both have a comfortable fit and are easy to ride in. If you prefer a more ‘natural’ feel I would opt for jodhpur boots and half chaps as personally, I find this gives a better feel of the horse’s movements.
I do, however, adore my Mountain Horse long boots. These are reserved for competitions only as they both look and feel the part. They offer immense comfort whilst riding and are the most popular choice for most who regularly compete. As long as you keep them well looked after- they will look after you. My current pair are nearly 6 years old!
Again, like most equestrians I own more casual footwear for around the stable or for travelling. Wellingtons are a great choice for working and travelling as they can be worn for anything from mucking out to walking the dog. These are inexpensive styles and offer both comfort and practicality.
‘Muckers’ vary with the season. I have a pair of both summer and winter muckers. They are waterproofed but are usually only ankle length so are perfect for people who like to wear shorts in the summer or who don’t want a long boot for working. Summer muckers are slightly more lightweight and offer greater breathability. Whereas winter muckers are usually fleece lined as well as waterproofed to keep your feet warm and dry during the colder months.
Another option, or addition in my case, is the ‘classic’ yard boot. These are comparable to hiking boots and are a comfortable and versatile option. They can sometimes feature a fleece lining and also protective toe caps which can be handy if you are prone to accidents on the yard like me!
Which are the best?
Overall there is no ultimate winner, you are going to need several pairs of equestrian footwear. Each style of boot offers different benefits and you need to discover what works best for you. The best course of action is to make the most of the available choices and both explore and indulge. Let’s face it you can never have too many shoes!