There’s nothing quite like riding a horse, whether it’s ambling peacefully down a quiet lane or galloping across a field. It’s quite simply put, a feeling of freedom through an incredible bond between you and your horse counterpart. However, if you’re a beginner, you need to know that before you ever get on a horse, you need to have all the equipment to maintain your safety and the horse’s health. While most barns will loan you your first equipment, you’re soon going to need a pair of your own so it’s worth getting to know the basics of horse-riding equipment.
Basic Grooming Kit
The grooming equipment are normally kept in a bucket with a handle. They include a curry comb to sift through loose hair and get all the dirt and debris out, followed by a stiff body brush for debris that has latched onto the body. To get that finishing glossy touch you usually see on a horse’s coat, you’ll have to finish up with a much softer brush. Any delicate regions such as the face or ears have their own brushes. The basic kit also includes a hoof pick and oil to clean out your horse’s hooves.
Glycerine soap is your safest bet for washing a horse and while doing so make sure you have a rubber massage glove on as horses always appreciate this texture best due to its sensitive nature. The scraper is used to get rid of the excess water.
Saddle pads come in a variety of sizes and shapes that depend wholly on the style of riding that you’re going for. Essentially, this piece of equipment absorbs moisture and prevent chafing (a feeling that every beginner will have to even slightly endure at first till they get used to the sensation). Saddles themselves also come in different varieties, depending on the type of use. For example, you would find an endurance saddle for sale (suited for long hours of riding) or you could get your hands on more general purpose saddles. The difference in design across each type of use can be seen in the depth of the seat, the amount of contact, the flatness of the saddle etc.
Bits and Bridles
This piece of equipment helps you control your horse and stop them as and when you want. A bridle consists of a bit and a set of reins usually, but you do get varieties such as the double bridle (two bits and two sets or reins) and so on. Reins tend to wear off easily so you’ll have to check on these regularly.
With A lunge line and whip you can both train and exercise your horse. There is also an additional piece of equipment called the side reins that can be attached from the saddle to the bridle for more control.
Other basics you’ll be coming into contact with are leg wraps, hoof boots, and splint boots to be able to protect your legs and the horse’s hooves. You’ll also learn more about leather stirrups but once again, these wear out easily so keep checking them for signs of this.
These are your horse-riding essentials! Don’t worry you’ll be taught in length on how to use them by professionals at the barn you choose, it’s just worth having some knowledge at your fingertips and showing your enthusiasm before you start your lessons!