What horse riding clothing should I buy for my child?
Posted on 24 July 2014 by Kim
After hours of haranguing you, your child has finally convinced to take her horse riding…but there’s no need to rush out and buy a whole new outfit to start with. Don't be tempted to splash out until after a couple of sessions.
As a parent your first concern is definitely going to be safety. Your riding school should be able to offer you a hard hat and a body protector for hire. If you’re trying to stagger the cost of all the kit, why not continue to hire the hat and the body protector, especially as these are much more expensive than the clothing described below?
To start with close-fitting trousers or stretchy leggings will be perfect for the bottom half. Take it from a rider who knows: jeans are actually really uncomfortable to ride in! Boots with a low heel will work but no trainers. A close-fitting t-shirt or top, jumper or jacket. Finally make sure that gloves are on your list as reins do have a tendency to cause painful blisters. Then once you and your child are both certain that she or he will continue to ride, you can invest in the appropriate kit.
Start with legwear. Younger children tend to start riding in jodhpurs. For everyday riding, any colour can be worn but for competitions you will need white or beige. Here at EQUUS we love the Toggi Showring – it’s great value, hard wearing and comes in a beautiful selection of colours. Older children often prefer to wear breeches. These finish around the mid-calf and are normally worn with long riding boots. Horze do a great selection of these. We particularly like the Horze Denim Children’s Breech.
Jodhpurs are designed to be worn with Jodhpur boots and these are a very important piece of kit. These are short black or brown boots that can be worn on their own or with ‘chaps’. Again we love the Toggi Ottawa Jodhpur boot which can be used for everyday riding and competitions. ‘Chaps’ are a form of gaiter. They provide grip for the rider and protection from the stirrup leathers rubbing the inside of the leg. Take a look at these cute Saxon Children's Equileather Half Chap or you could go for a 'suede effect' one if you prefer.
In the early stages the only other item of clothing I’d recommend, is a jacket. Go for one that’s not too baggy and that doesn’t have a hood. The HKM Children's Softshell Jacket is our favourite as it's got so many great features: it's made of technical fabric that means hay, straw and shavings don't stick to it; it's a modern style and it's waterproof.
Gloves are an important part of riding wear. Nowadays there are lots of styles to choose from. These Mark Todd ones will keep blisters at bay or if you prefer something more traditional this well known best seller from Mountain Horse Crochet Glove II Jr.
So the moral of the story is: don’t let your child be impressed with by other children in jodhpurs and jackets…all this can come later when you know they’re in it for the duration!
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