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If you’re looking for the best English riding boots, you’ve come to the right place. I’m a rider from the UK, and I know all about the different English riding boots.
English boots come in many different styles, each with their own function and purpose, and when you buy a pair, there are many things to consider, like their style, design, durability, and your budget. If you want to know exactly how to find the best English equestrian boots – I’ll tell you below.
In this guide, you can learn:
- The different types of English riding boots.
- The best English riding boots on the market
- How to choose English Riding Boots
Bottom Line Up Front
My top choice in English riding boots is the Ariat Kinsley Dress Boots. These boots are ideal for competitions because they’re super elegant and really make you stand out from the crowd. The Ariat Kinsley boots feature advanced footbed technology to keep you stable and secure in the saddle and will enhance your performance in any English riding discipline.
My Top Choice in English Riding Boots at a Glance
Before we start, I want to give you a sneaky peek at some of my top choice of boots from the article:
- Ariat Kinsley Dress Boot – The best boots for dressage competitions
- Dublin Universal Tall Boot – Best budget boot for comfort in the saddle and during barn chores.
- Shires Moretta Clio – A fantastic short boot for general riding and competition
What Are The Different Types of English Riding Boots?
English riding boots are used in the English horse riding disciplines such as dressage and showjumping. Traditionally, they’re made from leather, but you can also buy high-quality, synthetic boots. There are two types of English riding boots – long or short ones. Adult advanced riders usually wear long boots, and junior and beginner riders usually wear short boots.
Long English Riding Boots
Long English riding boots cover the whole of the lower leg. They prevent the stirrup leathers on an English saddle from pinching the riders’ legs and are stiff to help maintain a good leg position.
When it comes to long boots, you can choose between field or dress boots:
- Dress boots – generally don’t have zippers or laces and are made from stiff leather and provide full ankle support. They help you improve your seat and leg position and are suitable for all English horse riding disciplines, particularly dressage.
- Field boots – are made from soft leather and usually have a full-length zipper, or laces, on the back or side of the boot. The soft leather of field boots “drops” around the ankle, making them more flexible, so they are a popular choice for show jumpers.
Short English Riding Boots
Short English riding boots are comfortable in and out of the saddle, but they only protect your leg up to the ankle, so you must wear them with jodhpurs, chaps, or gaiters. Short boots are great for summer riding, and you can find them in two different styles – jodhpur or paddock boots.
- Paddock boots – are comfortable for riding and barn work and are easy to put on and take off because they have laces or a zipper. They’re usually waterproof with a deep tread, so, as the name suggests, paddock boots are better than jodhpur boots for wearing around the paddock or barn.
- Jodhpur boots – are similar to paddock boots but don’t have zippers or laces – they are slip-on and have elasticated side-gussets to give your ankles more flexibility when you ride. Jodhpur boots generally have a thin sole with little tread, so they’re better for riding rather than barn work.
What I Look Out for When I Choose English Riding Boots
The first thing I look out for when I choose a boot is how comfortable they are – like most equestrians, I’ll wear them for hours on end. I also ensure they’re tough and durable to cope with the demanding equestrian lifestyle. Riding boots are essential safety equipment, so you must buy the best ones for your needs.
To help you find the perfect boots, below, I’ve listed the most important things to look out for.
When you buy English riding boots, usually, you have the choice between leather or synthetic ones.
- Leather Boots – are the most expensive boots – they look elegant in the showering and can last for years if you take care of them correctly. Leather boots look sophisticated but aren’t great for barn work because they can get messed up by mud in the field or muck from the stables. If you want your leather boots to last, you must maintain them with special soap or conditioner.
- Synthetic Boots – are produced with man-made materials and are durable and weatherproof. They’re usually less expensive than leather boots and are easier to maintain – you can easily rinse them off with water.
Before investing in a pair of riding boots, I always ask myself what I’ll mostly use them for. If I want a good pair of boots for competitions, I choose high-quality, long leather boots.
If I’m looking for practical boots for barn work and general riding, I usually buy synthetic boots. I prefer synthetic boots for day-to-day barn chores and riding because I like to keep my leather ones looking good for competitions.
If you ride in all weathers, look for waterproof equestrian boots – if you live in a cold climate and ride out a lot in the winter, choose an insulated boot for extra warmth and comfort. If you mostly ride in the summer or live in a hot climate – choose a short or breathable boot to help prevent sweating and rubbing.
You must wear comfortable boots for riding – if they’re uncomfortable or don’t fit well, you won’t have good leg contact with your horse. If you wear your boots for many hours each day, look for ones with extra comfort features like cushioned insoles and arch support.
Zippers or Laces
English riding boots feature zippers or laces to give them a closer fit and provide extra support. Many riders find zippers and laces a bit fiddly and prefer slip-on boots, so choose boots with zippers or laces, depending on your personal preference.
Durability is a must with equestrian boots, especially if you want to wear them for barn work and riding. Always choose strong, robust boots and make sure they have a good sole. Rubber soles are the most durable – they’re also comfortable and waterproof with lots of traction.
The Best Long English Riding Boots on The Market
As an English rider, I know how important it is to have the correct boots for every situation. I never wear my expensive leather boots for barn work – instead, I have separate boots for different tasks. If you want to know what the best long English riding boots on the market are for every equestrian situation – I’ll tell you below.
#1 – The Best Long English Boots For General Riding
Riding Sport Ladies Essential Field Boots
I like these boots because they’re fantastic for everyday riding and look great in the show ring. The breathable lining keeps my feet nice and cool in all situations, and they feel super comfy with a gel foot bed and molded innersole.
The leather on these boots feels lovely and supple, but it’s delicate – so I wouldn’t use them for barn work. These boots are comfortable and practical and certainly enhance my riding performance.
- Soft and easy to break-in
- True fit
- Good value
- Not suitable for barn work
- They can be tight around the ankle
Dublin Ladies Pinnacle Boots II
While searching for the best long English boots, I thought I’d check out ones from Dublin. They’re a trusted equine brand with a reputation for high-quality products. The Pinnacle boots are made from high-quality leather and have a durable rubber sole with fantastic traction in the stirrup. I love them because they’re breathable and waterproof and keep my feet cozy and dry in the winter.
- Easy to put on and take off
- Great for barn work
- Adjustable around the calf to fit all calf widths
- They come in four attractive colors
- They’re narrow around the toe
- Better for the winter or cold climates because they’re heavily insulated
#2 – The Best Long English Boots For Competitions
TuffRider Ladies Belmont Field Boot
I love the soft leather on the Belmont boots – unlike most long leather boots, they feel nice and comfortable from day one. These boots are great for general riding, but with their classic design and Spanish cut top, they’re also perfect for the show ring.
The Belmont Field Boots make my legs look long and elegant in the saddle, and they helped a lot with my stability and performance. The grippy rubber soles kept my feet firmly in the stirrups, and the super comfortable memory foam foot bed gave me lots of arch support.
- They come in lots of sizes – slim, extra slim, regular and wide
- Good grip in the stirrup
- Water and stain-resistant
- Small bridge
- Weak zipper
Dublin Hollywell Tall Field Boots
These 100 percent full-grain, soft leather boots feel amazing, and I love the full-length zipper on the back so I can take them on and off easily. Like all Dublin boots, they’re super comfortable due to the painted Rider Comfort System footbed with heel and arch support.
The Dublin Hollywell boots have a contoured fit around the ankle, which gave me plenty of support but allowed for mobility. These boots are elegant and luxurious but feel sturdy and comfortable, and it’s hard to find any negative reviews about them.
- Snap tabs to cover and protect the zipper
- Front laces for a flexible fit
- Spanish top cut
- Narrow around the calf
- Not comfortable for wearing out of the saddle.
Ariat Kinsley Dress Boot
I chose these boots because Ariat has a solid reputation for equestrian footwear. I wasn’t disappointed – these boots ooze quality and look elegant and sophisticated. They have a stylish Spanish cut top and a full-length elastic panel which gives them a secure, close fit.
These handcrafted boots have the ultimate in innovation and design. I could really feel a difference in comfort with the DuraTread outsole and Advanced Torque Stability (ATS), unique to Ariat boots. These boots are built with performance in mind and will give any rider confidence in the show ring.
- High performance
- Handcrafted in a beautiful design
- True to size
- Delicate not for everyday riding – better for the showering.
- Not ideal for beginner riders.
#3 – The Best Budget Long English Boots
HORZE Chester Tall Dress Boot
I like these boots because as well as being fantastic to ride in, they’re great for barn work too. They’re made from 100 percent durable rubber and can withstand all the mud and dirt your equestrian lifestyle throws at them.
I was surprised at how supple these boots are, and the elasticated side panels give them a secure fit. They have a thick tread that sticks in the stirrups and makes me feel stable when I walk on slippery, wet surfaces.
- Suitable for barn work.
- Fully waterproof
- Good for beginners
- Bit tight around the calf
Dublin Ladies Universal Tall Boot
These universal tall boots have all the quality of Dublin boots at a value price. They’re the perfect equestrian boots because you can wear them in any situation. The sturdy rubber sole gives me support in the stirrups and makes them ideal for barn chores.
They have superior moisture, wicking, and breathable Jersey lining, which keeps your feet dry and warm, even in freezing conditions. I highly recommend these boots to beginner riders.
- Good value
- Easy to clean
- Small measurements
- Tight around the calf
The Best English Short Boots on The Market
I love wearing short boots for general riding, especially during the summer. They’re comfortable and give me more flexibility around the ankles when I ride. Some short boots are also suitable for barn work.
Here’s my top choice of the best short English riding boots for every situation:
#1 – The Best Short English Riding Boots For General Riding
Shires Moretta Clio Boots
I chose these boots from Shires because they’re a highly reputable equestrian brand with many positive customer reviews. They have attractive decorative stitching and durable insoles with steel shanks, which really support my feet when I ride.
The Moretta Clio boots feature a moisture wick lining to keep my feet cool both in and out of the saddle and are made with high-quality synthetic leather, which means they’re super durable and easy to clean. They have elastic sides for flexibility and a front zipper, so they’re easy to put on and take off.
- Good for beginners
- Available in black and brown
- Not suitable for barn work
- Quite narrow
Dover Saddlery Provenance Paddock Boots
These elegant paddock boots from Dover Saddlery have a traditional design with a punched toe and come in black or chocolate. They’re made from synthetic leather, and the fit is true to size.
I like these boots because they’re easy to clean, the front zip and elasticated side panels give them a close, comfortable fit, and they’re easy to put on and take off. These boots are fantastic for the price and work well in and out of the saddle – I’d be happy to wear them for barn work too.
- Good value
- True to size
- Poor arch support
#2 – The Best Short English Boots For Competitions
Dublin Evolution Paddock Boots
These boots are made from full-grain European leather and are elegant but durable and keep my feet comfortable for hours on end – thanks to the Rider Comfort System (RCS) memory foam foot bed. The Evolution boots fit well, though they’re a bit tight at first, and they feel secure, with lots of ankle support. These high-quality boots are perfect for competitions and general riding and are available in brown and black.
- Super comfortable and supportive
- Good for barn work
- Enhance performance
- Hard to break-in
Ariat Heritage IV Paddock Boot
These attractive boots from Ariat are made from 100 percent washable leather and have a lace-up front. I love Ariat boots because they’re stylish and come with a unique 4LR foot bed – with a built-in heel cushion for shock absorption and stability.
The Heritage boots are lightweight but feel strong and secure and have a moisture-wicking design, so my feet stay cool under all circumstances. Another good thing about these boots is their DuraTread outsole which provides extra traction to keep my feet firmly in the stirrups in competitions.
- High craftsmanship
- Innovative advanced technology
- Not suitable for barn work
- They can be tight and rigid around the foot and ankle.
#3 – The Best Budget Short English Riding Boots
Equistar Ladies Paddock Boots
I love these high-quality synthetic boots from Equistar because they look smart, and I can comfortably wear them for hours. They’re weatherproof, and I’d happily wear them for barn chores or riding. I was surprised at how comfortable these boots are – they’re super flexible, with a unique EquiStar sole system. They have a side zipper and elasticated side panels for a secure fit and are available in brown and black.
- Easy to clean
- Good for beginners
- No wide fit
TuffRider Ladies Paddock Boots
These stylish, synthetic leather paddock boots from TuffRider have traditional toe stitching and come in black and mocha. I like these boots because they’re comfortable, durable, and weatherproof with a thick rubber sole – perfect for riding and barn work. These are fantastic budget boots, perfect for beginner riders.
- Available in wide fit
- Good for barn work
- Not fully waterproof
The Best English Riding Boots – Top Picks
My favorite long boots are the Ariat Kinsley Dress Boots. They look amazing and really help with performance. They’re so classy; I want to wear them all the time, not just for riding.
For budget boots, I have to pick the Dublin Universal Tall Boots. They are high quality and are fantastic for riding and working in the winter. As far as short boots go, the Shires Moretta Clio get my vote. These are fantastic summer riding boots, great for beginner and experienced riders.
Answer: The best boots for horse riding depend on your riding discipline. So, the best boots for English riding are English riding boots – if you ride Western, you should wear Western boots. Riding boots should be tough and durable with a good sole and should have a small heel – a minimum of 1-inch to stop your feet from slipping through the stirrups.
Answer: One of the main reasons English riders wear long boots is to protect their legs from the stirrup leathers on an English saddle. The leathers on an English saddle sit on the outside of the flap and can pinch the rider’s skin. English riders also wear long boots to help the rider keep their legs in the correct position.
Answer: The length of English riding boots depends on the rider’s discipline and riding level. Adult, advanced riders usually wear long boots – up to the knee for competitions. However, many English riders like to wear short boots for general riding – they are more comfortable for barn work and allow more flexibility around the ankle.
Conclusion and My Top Pick
If you ride in English riding disciplines such as dressage and show jumping, English riding boots are a must. You can choose long or short boots depending on your riding level and personal preference. Long boots help you keep a good leg position, while short boots give more flexibility around the ankle.
My favorite riding boots currently on the market are the super comfortable and attractive Ariat Kinsley Dress Boots. These boots are to die for – they really make you stand out in the show ring and enhance your performance.