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Review: Body Protector for short-waisted people or anyone who hates stiff body protectors, but wants a Beta 3 Certified model

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  • Review: Body Protector for short-waisted people or anyone who hates stiff body protectors, but wants a Beta 3 Certified model

    I have held off posting, but I wanted to share my experience with the Champion Adult Titanium TI22 Protector. I am short-waisted, vertically challenged, and middle-age. Not an easy fit for a BP. I also tend to overheat very quickly and found competing mid-summer in my vest pretty awful.

    I have tried just about every vest and owned several, including Charles Owen and Tipperary. I hated them all. I tried on the Airowear and thought that I would never be able to ride in it. I wanted something that was Beta 3, but I felt all of the ones that I tried (at Dover and Smartpak) would never work. I over-heated in my CO. The Tipp was not a great fit and was not certified to boot. When I retired y horse from eventing in 2008, I sold them all.

    I got a young horse, and, although, I know the BP will not protect my spine, protection against bruising is a plus. So I began my search anew to see if any of the newer models might be an improvement over the older designs. I ordered just about all of the ones I could try from Smartpak and none were comfortable.

    Then I saw an ad for the Champion. It has a short size, so that was a real attraction. The price was pretty high, but I found it on Ebay really cheaply and bit the bullet. My measurements were between a small and a medium, and I ordered the medium. It seemed good , but a bit big. So I ordered the small short, and I am in love. It has a reflective lining to help dissipate the heat, and I think that it helps. It has sections like the Tipp, so it is flexible, but it is Beta 3 certified. I have been riding in it several times a week for the last two months, and it is the best vest that I have had.

    So any of you vertically challenged folks who have trouble finding a vest, you may want to try the Champion. I suspect that taller folks will like the regular and tall sizes, but finding something when you are short-waisted is a real plus.
    Last edited by IFG; Aug. 30, 2019, 01:04 PM.

  • IFG
    replied
    Originally posted by Hattie View Post
    IFG - I was shocked at the $129 price and the skeptic in me thought it has to be a Chinese counterfeit, but I googled the company selling the vests and they are a salvage seller (overstocks, freight damaged boxes, etc) and they were a long time highly rated seller. It arrived with the original tags and is not a counterfeit!
    Agreed. The only thing that I can think is the tag says Beta 2009, versus Beta 2018. Apparently, the vest is the same, just the label is different. Regardless, it is the first Beta 3, that I can actually move in, and I think that being able to move is as key to avoiding being injured, as a vest. So glad that folks who have ordered them are happy. You always worry about giving bad advice in a review and having people be unhappy.

    Leave a comment:


  • Hattie
    replied
    IFG - I was shocked at the $129 price and the skeptic in me thought it has to be a Chinese counterfeit, but I googled the company selling the vests and they are a salvage seller (overstocks, freight damaged boxes, etc) and they were a long time highly rated seller. It arrived with the original tags and is not a counterfeit!

    Leave a comment:


  • IFG
    replied
    So glad that people are happy. As several have mentioned, I sized down. I hope everyone continues to be as pleased with their vests as I am. I have no idea why the eBay sellers had them so cheap, but I am certainly happy that they did!

    Leave a comment:


  • Hattie
    replied
    I’m a CDE competitor and accidentally came across this discussion and decided to replace my Tipperary after reading the reviews. I also received mine today (I ordered the L short off EBay for $129!!). The short length fits perfectly when I’m sitting in my carriage, and like AddLeg I think a medium would work. It is twice as thick as my Tipperary, so it’s going to take a bit of time to adjust to the difference. I’m just excited I saved so much money. I still need to purchase one for my navigator but I think I will order the medium short on the next deal I see.
    Last edited by Hattie; Jul. 27, 2019, 08:13 AM.

    Leave a comment:


  • add leg
    replied
    Got mine today too and wow, it's awesome! I've only worn it around the house, but it feels just as secure and safe as my Airowear but so much more comfortable. My Airowear leaves bruises on the inside of my upper arms, but the Champion has so much more room to move around. I wore an L5 in the old vest and it was a major boob squisher (best way I can describe it, sorry - I am uh, well endowed). This one is a large regular and in all honesty, I probably could wear a medium. If I go by the size chart, my chest fits an XL and my waist is a M, so just a heads up you can definitely size down!

    Leave a comment:


  • IFG
    replied
    Originally posted by Lusoluv View Post
    I got my new Champion vest via Ebay today. I have not ridden in it yet, but I've worn it around the house and the Adult Sm fits me correctly. It's more substantial than my old Tipperary vest, but that's probably a good thing. The vented foam pieces are thicker and under the arms the seams overlap (unlike the Tipp), so it offers more protection - hence the Level 3 rating. It is much more comfortable than the Chas Owen I had or other Beta 3s I've tried, so I'm keeping it. Looking forward to wearing it at my upcoming horse trial. Thanks OFP for your review and to Vineyridge for the Ebay tip. Though I wasn't planning to buy a vest this season, spending $135 was a lot easier than $350+ at the online retailers!
    Yeah, thanks for the update .

    Leave a comment:


  • Lusoluv
    replied
    I got my new Champion vest via Ebay today. I have not ridden in it yet, but I've worn it around the house and the Adult Sm fits me correctly. It's more substantial than my old Tipperary vest, but that's probably a good thing. The vented foam pieces are thicker and under the arms the seams overlap (unlike the Tipp), so it offers more protection - hence the Level 3 rating. It is much more comfortable than the Chas Owen I had or other Beta 3s I've tried, so I'm keeping it. Looking forward to wearing it at my upcoming horse trial. Thanks IFG for your review and to Vineyridge for the Ebay tip. Though I wasn't planning to buy a vest this season, spending $135 was a lot easier than $350+ at the online retailers!
    Last edited by Lusoluv; Jul. 26, 2019, 10:33 PM.

    Leave a comment:


  • Jealoushe
    replied
    Originally posted by banmharcach View Post



    Actually, from your own blog--there's an OR in there which still permits vests that didn't necessarily choose to pay for BETA testing & remained with only ASTM certification.


    : 2.1 A body protector vest is mandatory for the warm-up and the cross-country test. A body protector vest may also be worn for the warm up and during other tests.Body Protector vests must meet or exceed, and be appropriately labelled ASTM approved standard F1937 or BETA Level 3 body protector standard


    I don't think the old vests (like Tipperary) are that ASTM standard though, the new ones are.

    Leave a comment:


  • banmharcach
    replied
    Originally posted by Jealoushe View Post

    I thought I would need the short but the regular wasn't much different.

    I seriously can not get over how comfortable and cool this vest is. I completely forget it is on.

    Also, Equestrian Canada mandated BETA 3 vests this year, I am shocked the US isnt doing the same.


    Actually, from your own blog--there's an OR in there which still permits vests that didn't necessarily choose to pay for BETA testing & remained with only ASTM certification.


    : 2.1 A body protector vest is mandatory for the warm-up and the cross-country test. A body protector vest may also be worn for the warm up and during other tests.Body Protector vests must meet or exceed, and be appropriately labelled ASTM approved standard F1937 or BETA Level 3 body protector standard



    Leave a comment:


  • Jealoushe
    replied
    Originally posted by add leg View Post
    Well, the large short was OOS, but I ordered the regular length to give it a whirl. Figure I can re-sell if it doesn't work.
    I thought I would need the short but the regular wasn't much different.

    I seriously can not get over how comfortable and cool this vest is. I completely forget it is on.

    Also, Equestrian Canada mandated BETA 3 vests this year, I am shocked the US isnt doing the same.

    Leave a comment:


  • IFG
    replied
    Originally posted by add leg View Post
    Well, the large short was OOS, but I ordered the regular length to give it a whirl. Figure I can re-sell if it doesn't work.
    I had no trouble reselling the medium that was too large. I even made a few bucks. They buyer was getting such a good deal, she did not mind. In fact, I had buyers lining up in less than 24 hours.

    Leave a comment:


  • add leg
    replied
    Well, the large short was OOS, but I ordered the regular length to give it a whirl. Figure I can re-sell if it doesn't work.

    Leave a comment:


  • Lusoluv
    replied
    Janet: No, I'm not holding my breath on USEA coming up with a mandate for rated vests any longer. Guess I was using it as an excuse not to spend more $$ since I'm only running Novice. But then hearing about some injuries, etc lately- not that any vest can save a rider from ever getting hurt, I figured I should pull the trigger. If the Champion is as comfortable as my Tipp and not much more expensive, it's worth the investment.

    It should arrive late this week, so will report back. I'm about 5'6", average torso, 128lbs so hoping the fit will work based on sizing chart.

    Leave a comment:


  • Janet
    replied
    Originally posted by Lusoluv View Post
    I was waiting for the USEA to require a rated vest before investing in a better one,...
    Don't hold your breath.

    Leave a comment:


  • IFG
    replied
    Originally posted by Lusoluv View Post
    Thanks - you COTH enablers! I'm a lower level eventer who's been riding in a Tipp Youth Large for the last 3 years. The Tipp adult small was too long. It was like new on Ebay for < $100. I was waiting for the USEA to require a rated vest before investing in a better one, but the OP's review and then Vineyridge's Ebay tip was too much to pass up. Just ordered the Adult Small based on the size chart. I'm very average in height/weight, etc. so I hope it fits
    I hope it works! Please keep us updated.

    Leave a comment:


  • Lusoluv
    replied
    Thanks - you COTH enablers! I'm a lower level eventer who's been riding in a Tipp Youth Large for the last 3 years. The Tipp adult small was too long. It was like new on Ebay for < $100. I was waiting for the USEA to require a rated vest before investing in a better one, but the OP's review and then Vineyridge's Ebay tip was too much to pass up. Just ordered the Adult Small based on the size chart. I'm very average in height/weight, etc. so I hope it fits

    Leave a comment:


  • vineyridge
    replied
    If anyone wants one, there are two ebay sellers that have them less than half the price Smartpak and other outlets want. The ebay sellers' prices range from $105 to $170.

    Leave a comment:


  • IFG
    replied
    Also, when I zip it, it seems tight, but it completely eases in a minute or so, and it never feels tight or constricting when I am riding. I watched the Pippa Funnell video, then kept feeling for where my ribs were. I felt a bit crazy, but the vest seems about the length fit-wise on me that it seems on her. I think maybe a touch shorter than some vests, but getting tipped out of the saddle by the vest sucks.

    Leave a comment:


  • IFG
    replied
    I measure about 37" chest and 30 waist (on a good day). I bought both the small and medium, and I found the medium too big. I am just fitting length-wise into the small, but it just feels better. I was lucky to get them for about $150 each on Ebay, so sold the medium no problem. The shorter length means that the vest does not hit the saddle. I swear my last fall was because the back of my CO bumped the saddle when I was off balance, just tipping me off.

    Leave a comment:

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