Horse boots are used primarily for protecting your horse from injuries during running or jumping. They prevent bruises from hitting against stones and help your horse’s grip on uneven topography. In addition, they can also absorb shock when your horse’s hooves touch the ground. However, not all boots serve the same function. Dressage areas are not very bumpy. Hence, choosing proper dressage horse boots can be tricky. Here are a few pointers to aid your decision:
- Understand Why You Need Boots For Dressage
In dressage, some horses without boots tend to shorten their strides. They do so to protect themselves from repeated pressure which can cause fatigue. These horses generally have less thickness in their soles.
Dressage boots protect from interference, that is, hitting your horse’s hooves on another leg. Additionally, they also provide relief by reducing the force exerted on the horse. They commonly consist of materials you can clean easily. Moreover, they offer a competitive advantage by causing better lift and higher momentum. It is because dressage horse bootsare usually heavy. Hence, the horse has to put more effort into movement, making each move look exaggerated. Bad boots can reduce the speed of the horse during any movement, and also keeps the horse safe from overreaching or clipping itself with a hoof.
- Choose Comfort
Comfort is one of the most important parameters when picking a boot for your horse. You must select a boot that hugs your horse’s hooves without touching its skin or hair. You should also ensure that the dressage horse boots do not cause friction by rubbing against your horse.
- Ensure Functionality
The chief functions of these boots are protection and support. Before settling on a type of boots, make sure that they protect the ligament and tendons of your horse. The right boots give much comfort to the footing of the horse. Also, ascertain that they prevent concentrated pressure by distributing any additional force. As functionality is the principal reason for using dressage horse boots, these specifications are of utmost significance.
Another good measure of functionality is the fastening system. A well-functioning boot fits well and also helps the horse to gallop faster. The right boots also protect the ligament and the tendons of the horse. The fastening system of a boot enhances its fit. The type of fastening is rarely a deal-breaker as long as it works and is adjustable. Choose a fastening you can easily use. A strap system is a popular choice in this regard.
- Pick The Right Material
In dressage, poise and taste are traditionally consequential. Hence, when it comes to dressage horse boots, you have to pick an appropriate material. You have to select a moderately heavy material that is also long-lasting. Also, people usually choose black or white coloured material for their horses. The right materials like faux-leather and fleece materials, those that are pressure-absorbing, are some of the best materials that will be good for your horse.
- Check The Fit
Before you buy boots for your horse, you can estimate the size it would require using its breed, height and weight. Manufacturers usually provide a chart to help you with this. It is common for horses to use one size smaller boots on their forelimbs.
Nonetheless, it is vital to check the fit of the boots you have bought by trying them on. There should be enough space for your finger between the boot and your horse’s leg. Ensure that the boot is neither too tight nor too loose. On the other hand, being too tight can injure your horse’s tendons.
Compromising on any of these factors would mean discomfort to your horse. It would ultimately affect its performance and consequently your riding experience.