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Half chaps vs. tall boots: what to ride in?

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  • Half chaps vs. tall boots: what to ride in?

    Hello all! I'm hoping to get some opinions here... I've been riding in half chaps for most of my adult life and have used tall boots (years ago for one show). That's the extent of my show record (sad, isn't it?) I have recently acquired a new horse and am in training with a local dressage trainer and will want to show next spring. What is everyone's thoughts on schooling in half chaps vs. my older pair of tall boots? I remember feeling the difference in the dress boots vs. the half chaps and was curious if I should start schooling in those to keep my feel when I (hopefully) make it to the show. Thoughts?
    "The Horse: Friendship without envy, beauty without vanity, nobility without conceit, a willing partner, yet no slave."

  • #2
    Tall boots make a huge difference in how you leg works and communicates. You'll become a better rider with them
    www.destinationconsensusequus.com
    chaque pas est fait ensemble

    Comment


    • #3
      I always school in paddock boots with half chaps. I only pull out my tall boots on show days. It works for me.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by paintlady View Post
        I always school in paddock boots with half chaps. I only pull out my tall boots on show days. It works for me.
        me too

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        • #5
          I school in paddock boots and half-chaps and am fine using my tall boots for shows and clinics and the like...but it's also because of the pair of tall boots I have. They're field boots (I event) and they're incredibly supple and flexible, so they aren't very different from my chaps/boots combo. However, I've founds with stiffer and cheaper boots that it helps to practice riding in them. If you want to "save" them by not riding in them every day (that's why I use my half-chaps most of the time) but still want to practice, I'd do it for about the week before the show It all depends on your pair of boots and your ability to adapt between the two!
          "Last time I picked your feet, you broke my toe!"

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          • Original Poster

            #6
            I appreciate the feedback; the tall boots are just sitting so maybe I'll break them out and break them in! I'll always have my half chaps w/paddock boots and I can clean up the tall ones for show (if I get there). I'm really liking this forum! Thank you!
            "The Horse: Friendship without envy, beauty without vanity, nobility without conceit, a willing partner, yet no slave."

            Comment


            • #7
              I always ride in paddock boots and half chaps until about a week (7 days) before a clinic or competition. I then go back to my tall boots to help readjust my leg (ultra-sensitive mare) to keep my aids just right.

              Saves on my boots and it saves on my feet.
              Originally posted by SmartAlex

              Give it up. Many of us CoTHers are trapped at a computer all day with no way out, and we hunt in packs. So far it as all been in good fun. You should be thankful for that.

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              • Original Poster

                #8
                Well, I just answered my own question... I broke out the old boots and they no longer fit! Darn; I spent a lot of $$ on those things 10 years ago and they were only used a few times. Sigh... paddock boots and half chaps here we go. Save my pennies for a pair of tall boots down the road.
                "The Horse: Friendship without envy, beauty without vanity, nobility without conceit, a willing partner, yet no slave."

                Comment


                • #9
                  There are some alterations a good shoemaker can easily do. Wear a pair of breeches and whatever type of socks you normally would when wearing tall boots and drop by the shoe repair place. You might be happily surprised.

                  I normally wear chaps and paddock boots but will put on tall boots few times a month. Mine rub my heel so I don't like wearing them around the barn. Not sure that I notice that much difference in my leg.
                  Susan B.
                  http://canterberrymeadows.com/

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                  • #10
                    *scratches head* Everyone's justification is to save your boots. I've had the same pair of tall boots (Ariat) now for over 4 years, and ride 6 days a week. They are no where near needing any replacing of anything.
                    www.destinationconsensusequus.com
                    chaque pas est fait ensemble

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      If you want to be taken seriously wear boots
                      See those flying monkeys? They work for me.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I was of the paddock boots & half chaps camp - save the tall boots for shows/clinics. Then I was "inspired" to start wearing tall boots for everyday schooling. It did make a difference. My lower leg was quieter so I think my aids are clearer. Now I can't ride without them
                        Savor those rides where you feel like a million bucks, because there will be those where you feel like a cheap date...

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          i myself prefer to ride in my tall boots. i like the feel of it much better
                          be kind to your horses mouth!

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                          • #14
                            I am in the paddocks and half-chaps camp. For me, it saves my tall boots and shocking but true, I like to use my ankles to influence my spur/heel use in schooling. That said, I like dressage boots with more flexible ankles. I disagree that people won't take you seriously in half-chaps for schooling. I've never known this to be true. There are some very nice half-chaps on the market these days.

                            Also, if you spend the day at the barn, paddocks can be much more comfy on the feet and I feel better trudging through unpleasant conditions and bathing horses in these than I would tall boots. They are just so easy and convenient.
                            Proud member of the Colbert Dressage Nation

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I always ride in my tall (field) boots. I find that they make my leg position much better! And I think they're more supportive for my ankles
                              Cascadia- OTTB mare. 04/04-05/10
                              If love could have saved you, you would have lived forever

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                tall boots only- put them on before and take them off immediately after...nothing compares to the feeling!! And if you really want to show- get ready...that's the stuff you'll have to perform in - why not train in it...to be sure that you are very competent when show day comes?
                                "the man mite be the head but the woman is the neck and the neck can turn the head any way she wants..." -smart greek woman

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by Petstorejunkie View Post
                                  *scratches head* Everyone's justification is to save your boots. I've had the same pair of tall boots (Ariat) now for over 4 years, and ride 6 days a week. They are no where near needing any replacing of anything.
                                  The difference for me is that I don't have to clean my half chaps and paddock boots. I have to keep my tall boots relatively clean, especially for shoes.

                                  So I wear chaps most of the time. If I go to a clinic or cross country schooling or something, I tack up like I would for a show (I use a different bridle and bit at home as well, so 'show bridle' gets put on).

                                  For me, chaps are similar to the schooling bridle many people have. The show bridle stays nice and clean, where the schooling bridle can get a bit scuzzy at times.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by NCSue View Post
                                    [COLOR="Sienna"]There are some alterations a good shoemaker can easily do. Wear a pair of breeches and whatever type of socks you normally would when wearing tall boots and drop by the shoe repair place. You might be happily surprised.[COLOR]
                                    Second this.

                                    During the winter months I wear paddock boots and very stiff half chaps, that way they act like tall boots.
                                    Other than that I wear tall boots every time I ride.

                                    Ride in what you show in.
                                    Frogs in a Basket. Oh, one jumped out.
                                    EC Level 1 Coach, ARIA Level 3 Dressage Coach
                                    www.dressagelife.com
                                    http://piaffing.blogspot.com/

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      I am on a vacation from dressage in any serious way, and trail riding a lot, so I'm just doing half-chaps and paddock boots for the next few months. I do get the tall boots out occasionally just to remind myself how to ride in them. But I've sworn off regular tall boot use until I find a pair that actually fit, which may mean going custom.
                                      You have to have experiences to gain experience.

                                      1998 Morgan mare Mythic Feronia "More Valley Girl Than Girl Scout!"

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                                      • #20
                                        I like using my paddocks and half-chaps for my greenies because I have more flexibility and feel and my half-chaps are suede and super-grippy for those "greenie moments"

                                        I will also ride in tall boots when the horse I'm riding is at 1st level or above. By then, I feel less of a need for flexibility and more of a desire to have a stable/quite leg.

                                        Well, that's what I USED to do when I was a WS for my dressage trainer. Now that I'm off on my own, I tend to just use my paddocks mostly, but occasionally when I'm feeling motivated I'll bust out the tall boots....

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