If you’ve ever wondered which jodhpurs or breeches are right for you, here are our top tips to help you make the right choice:
The main difference between breeches and jodhpurs is the point they finish on the rider’s leg, and what kind of boots they are designed to be worn with. Breeches finish around mid calf and have touch and close fastenings to get a snug fit, to ensure they are comfortable to wear with long boots. Jodhpurs finished around the ankle and, whilst they can be worn with long boots, they are most commonly worn with jodhpur/paddock boots and chaps/gaiters.
· Whilst you can wear jeans and other clothing for riding, jodhpurs and breeches are shaped to fit and have extra features to ensure that you’re as comfortable in the saddle as possible. If you’re having trouble getting a really comfortable pair, you may have the wrong size or the way a particular brand is cut isn’t right for you. Just like shopping for the perfect pair of jeans, don’t be afraid to try different models to get the right fit.
· A lot of jodhpurs and breeches include a stretch element, so, for example, Lycra, Spandex or Elastane may be incorporated into the fabric. This means that the jodhpurs move with you, and it should mean that they are really comfortable.
· Knee patches can be great for those who find that the fabric around the knees gets worn. As the knee should be loose and relaxed when riding, you might find it rubs on the saddle. Knee patches can be self fabric (the same fabric as the body of the jodhpurs and breeches) or something else, like real suede, faux suede or another suitable fabric.
· Having a stretch full seat on any breeches can be a really useful feature. If the fabric at the front is stretchy and moves with you, but the seat doesn’t, you might find this restrictive.
· Why low rise? Just like jeans and trousers, where the waistband sits on jodhpurs and breeches is very much down to personal preference. Also, you might find your shape suits a particular cut more than another.
· Two tone breeches can be fun for kids, but choosing the colour combinations carefully also means that they are great for adults too…and they can look slimming and flattering.
· Clarino is a faux suede that can enhance grip and comfort, but is also easy to wash and care for.
· Why a wide waistband? Some people find these more comfortable as any tightness generated when fastening is evened out over a wider area.
· Many breeches and jodhpurs come with clever features and are made from technical fabrics. These can be really helpful, but they can add to the price.
· Who doesn’t love a bit of colour in their day to day riding attire? We all know that dark jodhpurs and breeches can hid the inevitable stains that looking after horses brings, but make sure you were the right colour clothing when competing. If you’re worried about your beige or white breeches or jods getting dirty before you climb aboard at a competition, consider investing in some waterproof over trousers to help protect your legs.
· Don’t forget that ‘equestrian’ fashion is very in at the moment, so don’t be afraid to visit the shops after riding! As a top tip, make sure you remove as much straw/hay as possible before you insist you’re a follower of fashion!