5 essential pieces of equestrian kit - for adults
Whilst there are lots of different horse-riding disciplines, there’s a few must-have items when it comes to general tack and clothing. Here’s our list of 5 essentials that every rider needs before they saddle up.
Saddle up with certainty
While the type of riding discipline you are involved with will dictate what you need to wear, particularly when you get to competition-level, you still need a few basics.
From hacking to hunting, dressage to show jumping, you must have riding boots, a safety helmet, saddle, horse rug and bridles, reins and bits. There are, of course, a whole host of other equestrian tools and attire that you will also need as your passion for riding progresses, but these are the basics.
It’s so imperative for every rider to have a good pair of riding boots - properly fitted, comfortable to wear and, of course, appropriate to your riding discipline.
If you need help measuring up for your boots, see our blog: 6 things to consider when buying a perfect pair of riding boots.
All boots generally have a high leather shaft, this protects your lower leg and ankle from any irritation caused by rubbing against the saddle. This part of the boot also protects your legs from pinching.
Your riding boots will also support your heel as the detailing ensures you can slot your boot into the stirrup, holding it in the correct riding position. They also have a reinforced toe cap.
There are many different styles of boot, more appropriate to riding than others.
Field boots are knee-high and very popular in British eventing. They tend to be seamless, featuring a lace front. Dressage boots are generally plain black with a smooth front.
Paddock boots are only ankle-high and tend to be worn for light training, riding lessons and barn work.
Even the most accomplished of riders could potentially fall. Horse related injuries, particularly with regards to the head, are common in horse riders, so it’s important to wear adequate protection.
If you’re buying a riding hat, firstly measure the circumference of your head above your eyebrow. If you’re not confident of your measurement, seek a local fitter for advice.
The riding regulations have recently changed in relation to hat safety standards, so check with your supplier what standards are relevant to the helmet you are intending to purchase.
They come in a range of styles and colours.
Saddles are designed for different disciplines, so it’s important you go for the right one and that you fit it properly.
For example, if you are a show jumper, enjoy flat work or occasional hacking, a good all rounder for training and competition use, is the Bedale Saddle (GP Jump). It has a nice forward-cut with a knee block for jumping, and is equally comfortable for hacking and other work.
If you are an experienced ring worker, the Overton Show jump Saddle is a good choice. This is a PR Show jumping Saddle, so it’s more forward cut than the GP model. You can also change the knee blocks to suit your individual style of riding.
A good quality horse rug is an extremely useful addition to your equestrian kit. They will keep your horse warm, dry and clean whether they’re in the paddock, out in the field, or in the stable. You can buy a number of different rugs for different occasions and requirements, so do your research as they come in varying weights, materials etc.
Bridles, reins and bits
These are all designed to control your horse when riding
Bridles, bits and reins are fixed to your horse’s head and, alongside the stirrups, allow you to communicate with him.
Remember that, before you go out and buy a bridle, you will need to measure your horse to be sure it will fit comfortably and accurately.
TSR Training System
This training system helps develop neck and back muscles. It encourages your horse to work in an outline which teaches self carriage. It includes an adjustable roller, ropes and pulleys, is sheepskin padded to reduce rubbing on your horse’s back legs, and is designed to be used whilst lunging. It’s also a useful addition to your essential tack and horseriding kit.
John Whitaker and the Whitaker family are well known in the equine industry, particularly within the show jumping circuit. The exclusive Whitaker brand of equestrian clothing and products, including Brogini riding boots, are available through John Whitaker International (JWI). Combining superior quality with exceptional performance, the Whitaker brand has earned the respect of both amateur and professional riders across the globe.