When you start hors riding, being well equipped like pros is essential. Your equipment and accessories will be a big part of your success, so a little piece of advice: take the time to choose wisely! Decathlon presents its essential horse riding gear to ensure your comfort and safety.
A helmet or riding cap
This item is an essential riding gear for beginners. Wearing a helmet when riding horses is mandatory for your safety, as it will protect your head in the event of a fall. Your helmet must conform to the rigorous Canadian safety standards (all Decathlon helmets do) and it must fit your head properly in order to ensure maximum protection. Some horseback riding schools rent helmets but, for safety and hygiene reasons, it is preferable to have your own.
Avoid wearing used riding gear
Be careful: if you do experience a fall, it is strongly recommended that you buy a new helmet as the impact may have damaged the interior of it—even if the damage is not actually visible. This is true of all sports where a helmet is worn: after a fall, you need to get new gear for a safe experience.
You don’t need to ride like pros or for very long to understand the importance of proper riding pants.
When you are just starting out, your legs will have a tendency to move quite a lot, which will quickly cause irritation on the inside of your knees. Not very comfortable! Riding pants, or breeches are items lined with Basane leather on the interior to minimize friction between the legs and the saddle. We advise you a cut to be fitted so as to avoid any folds that could irritate the skin. Choose a comfortable fabric for your pants that is stretchy, sturdy and easy to care for. If possible, avoid synthetic materials.
While riding horses, breathability and freedom of movement in your clothes are keys. In summer, short sleeves shirts or polos are the best because they allow you to spend hours outside without feeling the heat. In winter, long sleeves shirts are preferred by riders because they provide warmth but breathability, without restraining any movements. And if you have the choice between many color options, pick one that will make you feel good!
Horse riding boots are quite high (up to knee height) in order to reduce the friction between your calves and the saddle. The heel is designed to stop your foot from slipping through the stirrup entirely and getting stuck there. You can also pair your regular boots with "chapettes", which will provide the same protection as riding boots.
If you plan on wearing your boots in winter, just be sure you have enough room to wear thick socks inside.
They are not necessarily required, but are strongly recommended to reduce the friction of the reins in your hands and also to keep your hands warm. Note: your gloves should be soft and flexible to ensure you still have a good sense of contact with the reins and the horse.
A protection vest is a body protector in case of a shock while horse riding. Indeed, it absorbs shocks to the back and spine, and protects the ribs in case you fall. It is recommended for both experienced and beginners. It will not, however, protect you in the case of a fall. These vests are generally used for cross-country or obstacle jumping riders. All Decathlon equipment conforms to current regulatory standards. Always make sure it is the perfect fit for your body.
Once your horse riding gear is purchased, it will surely be easier for you, and a good idea, to carry everything in a comfortable, spacious and practical bag. Prefer a model with wheels like pros, to take it everywhere with you without the slightest effort.
Horseback riding often seems like an expensive sport, but it shouldn't be. Everyday, our teams strive to design the best technical products for each level of practice. This is why every equipment is conceived in a progressive way, so that it guides you throughout your progresses. You are on the right track!
Riding shops can sometimes impress new riders. They need to be reassured and be offered progressive equipment adapted to their level. Decathlon experts understand these issues because they are riders themselves. Choosing the right gear when you start your practice, that they know! Their expertise and active listening help you make the right choice. Together let's make horseback riding accessible and fun, and your practice an unforgettable moment.