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The tack room

34 and back in the saddle

20 replies

C0keZer0 · 11/01/2024 17:01

Just before Christmas I decided to bite the bullet and stop dreaming about riding again and actually do it. I think im 5 lessons in and finally feel like I can ride again and less like a sack of potatoes.

Now, I just feel like my one old pair of decathlon jodhpurs and and old battered M&S puffer coat isn't giving...equestrian.

I've bought some Harry hall country boots because I was wearing the short classic jodhpurs boots and felt I looked too try hard.

So without copying to cool teenagers and going matchy matchy le mieux, what can I get to improve my outfits? I also don't want to be looking like I'm off to a show?

Also, what's the difference between breeches and tights?

OP posts:
Floralnomad · 11/01/2024 17:31

I always rode in tights , half chaps and short boots with a roll neck base later and coat / jumper etc depending on the weather . When I went back to riding at 50+ having not actually ridden for 20+ yrs , that is what most of the adults seemed to wear although some prefer long boots ( I never get on with them ) . In the intervening 20 yrs I have been around horsey folk as I have a pony on full livery .

ArcticBells · 11/01/2024 17:38

Just add chaps/gaiters to your jodhpur boots. Coloured breeches are more usual than beige unless competing

twistyizzy · 11/01/2024 17:41

I always ride in full boots ie Ariat/mountain horse. I personally don't like riding in country boots as the soles are too chunky and grippy whereas you should really have a smooth sole with small heel hence long riding boots/jodh boots.
I love riding tights as they seem to suck me in and no zips etc to dig in.
Ariat does great riding clothes, expensive but worth it.
A good padded gilet is great for when it is cold but you want to avoid over heating when riding.
Apart from decent tights + boots + gilet/jacket I just wear old jumpers + polo shirts. They get wrecked and constantly washed anyway so I won't pay a lot for clothes to ride in.

ArcticBells · 11/01/2024 17:42

I should've added , don't buy loads of new stuff, there's lots on eBay. Nothing worse than having "all the gear and no idea" until you can really ride very well . The riding world is competitive and notoriously bitchy.

Wrapunzel · 11/01/2024 19:16

I started back when I turned 30 (15 years ago Blush) and I had a mean shop assistant mock me for asking for jodhpur clips Grin

I ride several times a week now/compete/have horsey kids and I wear Ariat tights or decathlon fleecy jodhs, mountain horse long boots (my instructor asked me if I was 12 when I turned up in long socks with my jodh boots, rude but fair), hoodies or base layers with a gilet or my beloved equidry when raining

C0keZer0 · 11/01/2024 19:39

Wrapunzel · 11/01/2024 19:16

I started back when I turned 30 (15 years ago Blush) and I had a mean shop assistant mock me for asking for jodhpur clips Grin

I ride several times a week now/compete/have horsey kids and I wear Ariat tights or decathlon fleecy jodhs, mountain horse long boots (my instructor asked me if I was 12 when I turned up in long socks with my jodh boots, rude but fair), hoodies or base layers with a gilet or my beloved equidry when raining

Haha this is great thanks. I feel so out of touch!!!

OP posts:
Wrapunzel · 11/01/2024 19:52

Smile My 7 and 5yo DDs love their matchy le mieux sets at the moment but sure they'll tell me what's cool/uncool in the next few years.

maxelly · 11/01/2024 23:54

I'm the worst person to ask as I'm a right scruff bag on the yard but to chip in on the difference between breeches/Jods/riding tights and leggings. They're all fitted riding trousers so you can go for whatever is most comfortable and aesthetically pleasing to you. Breeches and Jods are the more traditional/formal option, made of cotton and so slightly thicker and stiffer fabric. Breeches stop a bit above the ankle and so are meant to be worn with long boots whereas jodhpurs are normal trouser length so can be worn with, well, jodhpur boots (short boots). But the riding tights/riding legging option is really more popular now for general riding and round the yard especially with the youngsters ('proper' breeches still usually worn for competition esp showing and dressage). You can get them fleece lined for winter or breathable for summer and they're very practical and flattering. For a smart look most people go with nicely fitted riding leggings with a base layer top then further jumpers/jackets as needed, gillets v popular also as well. Equidry coats are all the rage ATM, I def recommend a proper jacket cut for riding rather than any old cheap waterproof, I find normal jackets are way too long at the back and annoying to ride in. Ariat/pikeur/le mieux are still really popular brands with adults for general clothing but go for muted complimentary colours rather than full matchy matchy and bling/diamante if you don't want to look like a teenager - and definitely do not get a le mieux pom pom hat silk (most adults go for a smart fixed peak helmet with perhaps a little sparkle detail rather than a jockey skull although the latter are arguably safer so perhaps one area to prioritise safety over looks).

Also (and I know a lot of people disagree) I can't get over my decades-long feeling that adults really ought to ride in long boots (or gaiters) to look smart, in my childhood jodhpur boots were strictly for children only. And I definitely think adults who adopt the whole long colourful socks pulled up to their knees over short boots look a bit silly, sorry to PP who did this😂. I do have a pair of 'yard boots' as obviously I wouldn't muck out in my smart ones but I'd never ride in them as per PP, they just feel all wrong.

Echo the advice to search vinted and eBay (for everything other than hats), you can pick up some amazing bargains! But seriously, please don't feel out of place whatever you wear, just enjoy the riding and the horses, the youngsters on my yard are right fashion plates (I count you as a youngster by the way, at 34 you're definitely at the young end of the equestrian spectrum) but amongst the older ladies anything goes and we'd never look down on someone for not having the right 'look' - if anything you can usually tell when someone's trying too hard to look 'country' and isn't actually prepared to get mucky and sweaty in their nice outfit!

Lastqueenofscotland2 · 12/01/2024 08:17

I hate riding in country boots as they are far to clunky and make it hard to really “feel” properly. I’d get gaiters for your short boots.

Id go for some breeches with the slightly denim-y material, they look smart and are flattering, with regards to what you wear on top, it’s January in the U.K. just keep yourself warm!

Lastqueenofscotland2 · 12/01/2024 09:35

I would also add I feel country boots are incredibly unsafe if you fall as you could risk getting your foot stuck

C0keZer0 · 12/01/2024 13:04

Thank you so much for the replies this has been SO helpful! I've found a good shop not too far from me that stocks most of the brands mentioned so I'm going to go on Sunday and try some stuff on. Riding tights and half chaps/gaiters are on my radar!

It was actually my instructor that recommended the country boots as I was whinging my ankles hurt but I suspected I'd get the above replies as they do feel very chunky in the stirrup.

I have a peaked hat. The fitted base layers I'll stay away from as I'm not the slimmest and no one needs to see that Grin

OP posts:
twistyizzy · 12/01/2024 13:15

Hurting ankles are usually due to tension in pelvis/hip flexors. There are good exercises you can do to improve mobility in these areas.

PaperDoves · 12/01/2024 13:19

twistyizzy · 11/01/2024 17:41

I always ride in full boots ie Ariat/mountain horse. I personally don't like riding in country boots as the soles are too chunky and grippy whereas you should really have a smooth sole with small heel hence long riding boots/jodh boots.
I love riding tights as they seem to suck me in and no zips etc to dig in.
Ariat does great riding clothes, expensive but worth it.
A good padded gilet is great for when it is cold but you want to avoid over heating when riding.
Apart from decent tights + boots + gilet/jacket I just wear old jumpers + polo shirts. They get wrecked and constantly washed anyway so I won't pay a lot for clothes to ride in.

All of this. I live in long boots, gilet and riding tights. I'll happily wear jodhpurs and half chaps too though. Country boots are often too floppy around the calf and chunky in the sole for schooling. Haven't gone back to breeches since I bought my first pair of tights!

Macramepotholder · 12/01/2024 13:33

I've also just returned! I have a 2 day a week share and I generally wear some mountain horse smooth soled paddock boots, which are a bit higher than regular jod boots, and half chaps. I actually wear an old ski jacket mostly which is perfect for riding- a bit shorter, totally waterproof, loads of pockets and toasty! Uniqlo heat tech is good for a base layer.

I had to be very clear with the guy in the hat shop I did not want Diamante detailing.

Arabaloosa · 12/01/2024 13:38

When working on a yard, I wore jodhpurs (usually black or navy), and long boots for riding in, along with the uniform polo shirt and long sleeved top underneath and a gilet if it was cold... I hated it, it looked far to magazine equestrian 🙈 before my two broke, I rode in what I was wearing, usually jeans, hoodie, and the lace up, hiking boot type Ariats. Just added a hard hat and away!

C0keZer0 · 12/01/2024 20:19

twistyizzy · 12/01/2024 13:15

Hurting ankles are usually due to tension in pelvis/hip flexors. There are good exercises you can do to improve mobility in these areas.

Oooh okay that's interesting. I need to improve my fitness from the tip of my toes to the hair on my head in all honesty!!!

OP posts:
Feckedupbundle · 12/01/2024 20:32

Dd2 wears a lot of Uhlan and Mochara equestrian stuff,and has also ridden in running tights from Sports Direct or the like ( a lot cheaper than riding tights) as she doesn't like jodphurs.
She rides for her job now,and had a Le Mieux Loire coat for Christmas. She lives it as it is very warm, waterproof, isn't flappy or baggy,and has leg straps and magnetic straps at the back vent,so there's no faffing getting on and off horses.
Facebook marketplace is great for riding stuff,just watch out for the scammers though.

C0keZer0 · 16/01/2024 12:22

My ebay purchases should start to land this week before my first hack on sunday :D i have, however, just checked the weather and it looks like rain all day Sunday.

my coat is short? anything i can do about my legs getting wet?

OP posts:
twistyizzy · 16/01/2024 12:42

C0keZer0 · 16/01/2024 12:22

My ebay purchases should start to land this week before my first hack on sunday :D i have, however, just checked the weather and it looks like rain all day Sunday.

my coat is short? anything i can do about my legs getting wet?

Full waterproof chaps. I have fleece lined ones which are great on hacks

C0keZer0 · 16/01/2024 13:14

I've just ordered half chaps ahahahah! I'll have a look though because...summer and winter chaps Grin

OP posts:
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