Sunday, January 11, 2015

Starter Kit for Riding Lessons - Part 2 of 3 - Paddock Boots

The second piece of safety gear you’ll want to purchase is a proper pair of boots. Paddock boots are shaped with a wide, one inch heel to prevent your foot from sliding through the stirrup. You can pair them with half chaps to give your lower leg extra grip or go without which is more acceptable for young children. Just like any other shoes you can pay a little but you’ll have to sacrifice comfort and quality. There are many brands of synthetic leather boots available but real leather will last longer when properly cared for, break in better, and will breathe better. However, if your child is growing and needs a bigger size every few months, by all means go synthetic or buy used from the consignment section. All of the boots featured this week are leather and are less than $70.00.

I’ll start with Dublin paddock boots. Dublin has a great history of taking innovations from high end brands and working those features into an entry level price point. Keep them in mind when looking for other specialty boots too as their tall boots, winter boots, and river boots pack a lot of value for the price.

Next is a house brand offered by Dover Saddlery. Middleburg boots have a good reputation when it comes to comfort and this particular pair give you the punched toe cap which is a detail I really love on riding boots. These boots also give you a choice of a zipper or lace front.
I’ll also recommend the TuffRider Baroque paddock boot for riders just starting out. TuffRider has really figured out the balance between function and durability while keeping prices low. You’ll see them come up often on this blog. Their Baroque paddock boots are quite soft for a full grain leather.

Next week I'll feature part 3 of the lesson starter kit, breeches.  Check back every Monday for a new product post. Until then, happy riding!

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