Horseback riding is not a sport that you can learn by simply showing up and jumping right in. Before mounting a horse, there is a great deal of equipment you must gather both for yourself and your horse. Consider five different categories of equestrian gear that novice riders should invest in before arriving at the local stable.
Riding an animal as large and powerful as a horse entails a certain degree of risk. Every rider will no doubt fall at one point or another, and beginners may be especially likely to do so. This is why it is critical that rookie riders wear helmets. Importantly, not all helmets are created equally. Effective helmets are certified specifically for horseback riding safety and must be replaced from time to time.
Wearing boots while riding horses is not simply a fashion statement. A good pair of boots keeps your feet comfortable and protected on riding days. What’s more, riding in shoes without heels could result in your foot getting stuck in the stirrup if you were to fall.
While denim pants are sometimes suitable for riding, many riders prefer breeches. These pants often make riding more comfortable and may even help you perform better. Look for pants that don’t have a bulky inseam, stretch easily, and feature padding on the inside of your knees.
When you first begin taking horseback riding lessons, you may be riding someone else’s horse. In this situation, you will likely have access to all the equipment your horse needs. Once you get your own horse, however, you will need a variety of supplies collectively known as “tack.” Namely, your horse must have a bridle and saddle that fit well. Be sure to measure your horse properly to determine the ideal size. There are also a number of other items you will need, including a saddle pad, halters, and possibly a bit.
- Grooming Supplies
Finally, you may need to accumulate various kinds of brushes and tools to keep your horse clean, healthy, and comfortable. Soft and stiff brushes, for instance, are helpful when cleaning your horse’s body and head of dirt and dust. On top of that, you may need a comb to untangle the longer hairs of the tail and a hoof pick to remove dirt and debris from the feet.
Riding, and especially owning, a horse requires a significant investment of time, energy, and resources. Even so, you may find it is all worth it as you build your riding skills and develop a strong bond with your horse.