Winter riding can provide truly picturesque scenery in the UK alongside keeping you and your horse healthy and active. However it is important to stay safe.
Here at RS-tor, where horse riding safety is paramount we thought we would take a look at safety issues when horse riding to share helpful tips and advice to stay safe in the saddle this winter time.
Five Top Tips from RS-tor for Horse Riding Safety this Winter
1.) Firstly consider the equipment and clothing you use when riding and whether it is suitable. Even during a winters day the light can be dull and a change in light can make horse riders hard to see. Be safe and be seen first and foremost by wearing fluorescent and bright colours with reflective safety wear for you and your horse.
2.) Consider your position on the road whilst riding. Don’t tuck yourself into the road bends make yourself visible to oncoming traffic whilst holding your position on the road!
3.) It is essential for your own health to keep warm when riding. Wearing gloves to keep your hands warm and functioning as well as warm socks. Fully zip up coats so they don’t flap and present a safety issue. Of course making sure your warm is important but also your four legged friend doesn’t want to be cold either. A clipped out horse can get cold easily and a cold horse can get fidgety and agitated which can result in him prancing which could cause you to lose control, balance or end up in the road with cars! Use an exercise sheet on your horse’s quarters if safe to do so.
4.) Planning your ride is vital particularly over the winter months as you need to consider the amount to daylight you have. Light is lost faster in the winter months and horses can become on edge because of this as well as making it difficult to be seen by motorists. Often drivers don’t expect to see horses when it is becoming dusk so consider this when planning your ride. Always notify someone at your yard if you are planning to ride off site and always take your mobile phone in a secure pocket. Where possible try and ride out with a friend or family member and always use your RS-tor riding safety aid, offering you a handle on any situation and helping to keep you confident, secure and safe in the saddle.
5.) Ice and snow can make the ground very slippery. A horse falling can get seriously hurt, not to mention potentially causing severe injury to yourself if your horse falls over on slippery ground. Ice isn’t the only risk to horse riders over the winter months sometimes we have no option but to tackle muddy grass verges and wet fields during our rides. Snow can also look beautiful whilst riding out but it is important to note that it can hide dangers beneath it. Avoid riding over surfaces that could conceal danger below such as rabbit holes or logs and of course ice. Stick to paths and walkways which have been cleared you don’t want to risk injury to yourself or your horse!
There is no real reason we can’t hack our equines out in winter time as long as certain safety precautions are taken. So follow our top tips and happy riding this winter! Don’t forget to take you RS-tor Riding Safety Aid when hacking as this valuable safety device can keep you safe in the saddle if you horse does spook, buck or slip. To find out more about the RS-tor visit the website www.rstor.co.uk
The Ranger Leather Mucker Boots are perfect for the winter months at the yard or whilst dog walking. Ideal for battling with mud, offering you optimum foot stability on icy ground and allowing you to keep your riding boots clean!
The water-resistant boots are composed of a waxy nubuck leather upper with a waterproof rugged non-slip rubber outsole. The padded lining, tongue and collar, together with a removable fleece insole, ensures supreme comfort in this practical, robust mucker boot.
Offered in adults sizes 5-12.
Now, for a limited time only to celebrate Christmas Taurus Footwear are offering 30% off these fabulous, functional boots. Snap up your pair today by visiting the website http://www.taurusfootwear.co.uk or Tel: 01328 851432 to speak to a member of the team!
Victoria Gallantree nèe Thirlby has been an avid Taurus Footwear supporter for a number of years. She loves the Taurus Lancer Boot for competing her horses in Eventing and Dressage and wears the Kentucky Jodhpur Boot for everyday riding and teaching. In our latest blog we share an update from Victoria; equestrian, riding instructor and Taurus Advocate Rider with her exploits and adventures from 2014!
It has been a very busy year for us with the highlight that my son William made the England Mounted Games team and was 8th in the World Individual Games under 17yr category. (Being 15 he has a chance to improve next year!) He relies on his Kentucky Boots as he feels so comfortable in them. “Because they are so light I can move my feet quickly!” says William who loves them. I think William is on his sixth pair now as his feet have had a rapid growth spurt from 11 to 15 but won’t change brand now. He has got a pair of Classics to wear to the G.B trials so fingers crossed that William and his Taurus boots will go to America with the squad!
Having sadly lost my horse to colic whilst recovering from an injury my season was very quiet. Never one to rest for long I was soon busy setting up a new business and Pony Club Centre. Sheepy Lodge Riding School was launched and is becoming a very popular venue for young riders. Children from 4 to 16 attend over the weekend to learn to ride and spend time with the ponies. I have 12 ponies that I use and up to 30 children through the week.
I have also been working towards my BHS Fellowship exam and this has encouraged me to study dressage in far more depth than I did as an event rider. I have had an opportunity to ride at Medium and Advanced Medium on some lovely horses at a dressage venue Witham Villa. The proprietor Verity Saul kindly then took me to Solihull to compete on a home bred horse of hers. He was fairly inexperienced at Medium but produced a good test and was a credit to the training that everyone at Witham Villa had given him.
It was lovely to put all my competition gear on again and my competition Lancer boots felt fantastic. I love how easy they are to get on and off and they look so smart that I always feel very well presented. “Knowing I can create a great first impression to the judge means a lot to me.”
Philippa has also had a quieter time competing this year but continues to ride her pony between the stress of A levels and University tour days. She is joining us for a days hunting during the Christmas holidays and is a very capable assistant instructor who has a very natural way of teaching young people. She is an age where image is very important so always likes to wear her matching half chaps, this then sets a dress code for my Pony Club members who not only want to ride like Pip but wear what she wears! Philippa is a wonderful role model and William is an inspiration to other children who want to ride competitively. As a mum I just want them to have fun and stay safe and at least in their Taurus boots I know they have the quality footwear that is so vital for balance and security whilst they ride.”
Here at Taurus we are thrilled to hear when our customers get on positively with their boots so Victoria’s update was great news.
To find out more about any of the Taurus Footwear range, including the Lancer Long Boot, Classics, Kentucky Jodhpur Boot and our range of Chaps and Gaiters visit the website at www.taurusfootwear.co.uk.
Taurus Footwear is well-known for fashionable, yet functional high quality footwear for equestrian and countryside pursuits. The latest addition to the Taurus range for 2014 has seen the brand new Leather Gaiter range hit the shelves, and now in addition to the Black Leather Gaiters, Taurus are thrilled to announce that they will now be offering the Leather Gaiters in a stunning, classic Brown!
Manufactured from soft, calf Aniline Leather, a soft Amara lining and with an elasticated rear panel to ensure optimum flexibility and a streamlined fit, hardwearing YKK rear zip and elasticated stirrup, these new Brown Leather Gaiters are a comfortable and robust alternative to long boots.
Currently only available in adult’s sizes with children’s sizes in brown to arrive in the New Year.
Adult sizes – XXS to XXL: RRP £42.25.
In addition the Brown Leather Gaiter can be perfectly paired with the new brown Classic Jodhpur Boot to create a timeless, equestrian fashion look at home or in the show ring!
For more information about the Leather Gaiters in Black or the brand new Brown or any of the wide range of equestrian footwear available from Taurus Footwear, visit the website http://www.taurusfootwear.co.uk.
We are pleased to announce the NEW Taurus Rider! For 2015 we will be supporting Mari Durward-Akhurst with our fabulous footwear.
Mari is a 20 year old Para Dressage Rider on the Para Squad of the British Equestrian Federation Excel Talent Programme. She is based in Buckinghamshire and trained by Linsay White. Mari has her present competition horse Sky O’Hara on loan, he loves polo’s and they have a really good partnership. Mari has just purchased a new horse L.Bear who is definitely one for the future.
Maris achievements include:
• Grade 3 Restricted Winter Champion 2010
• Represented GB at International level for 6 years as a Junior and Young Rider.
• 2nd (Reserve Champion) at the Para Dressage Restricted Winter Championships 2014.
• 2nd Bishop Burton 2* 2014
• Represented the Central Team at the Para Home International 2014
• Represented the London Team at the BD Inter County Challenge 2014
Mari’s ultimate goal is to ride at a Paralympics and win a gold medal. We have just shipped Mari some gorgeous Lancer Boots so she can look super smart at shows!
The Lancer Boots are stylish long boots manufactured from quality black full-grain calf leather. Featuring elasticated front lacing and a covered elasticated rear panel for improved fit. Equipped with a high quality rear zip with rolled edges starting low down to allow ease of entry, with an elasticated top strap with press stud fastener.
The Dermo dry padded lining for added comfort has a special anti-bacteria treatment which absorbs humidity away from the skin and provides a fresh and dry touch which is warm in the winter and cool in the summer. The non-slip rubber riding sole has been designed especially for good grip in the stirrup.
The Gaucho boot is made from waterproofed waxy nubuck leather. Its robust design is suitable for all country pursuits where comfort and practicality are essential. The side zip makes it easy to put on and the covered elasticated rear panels add to the comfort and flexibility of this generous fitting boot.
Why not purchase your pair today from the website www.taurusfootwear.co.uk
Available in sizes 4-12 currently with 25% off, for sale for just £100.00!
We were thrilled with the feedback we received so we thought we would share it with you all.
Tester Emma Woolley said…
“OMG these boots definitely are an absolute must-have for horse people across all disciplines. The design is beautiful, the outside is a lovely suede with attractive two-tone colouring. The soles are robust and the inside lining comfortable, making them very hard-wearing. Very versatile, over the past few weeks they have been worn around the yard, whilst riding and just look so smart at events and competitions. Some days they were on from morning till night and as they are lightweight and waterproof, they finished the day looking fresher than me! I will certainly purchase these boots again!”
In our latest blog we take a look at the wrapping up of the Event season for Jemima Gray and some heartfelt words and testimonials of our products we were hugely appreciated by all at Team Taurus!
At the end of the Eventing season for 2014 I’d just like to take the opportunity to say thank you so much to Taurus Footwear for supporting me this season.
This year has been full of highs and lows but everyone at Taurus Footwear has been incredibly loyal and have really benefited our small team. I have worn your boots all season and can definitely say that the are the most comfortable, durable and smartest boots I have ever owned. You have been so incredibly generous with providing boots for me, especially ordering my Lancer boots – I have had so many compliments and many people asked where I purchased them from! They have now stepped off the Eventing field for the year and took a trip Hunting with me yesterday! (pictured).
The season finished on a high with Central Team winning Weston Park u18 Championships and both horses are sound, happy and ready to start Winter training in a couple of weeks time! My aim next season is to compete Murphy at one star and Intermediate level and possible compete abroad. In the Spring we may start to look for another eventer to run alongside Murphy and loan Foxy to someone looking for experience and success at lower levels – whoever we choose will be incredibly lucky, I can honestly say he is the pony of a lifetime!
I look forward to updating you on my winter training over the period and can’t wait to get out Eventing and representing Taurus Footwear in 2015.
Taurus Footwear is proud to sponsor Michaela Huntington, a show jumping, trainer and riding instructor. Hard working Michaela has already had numerous successes this season and the team we thrilled to join her at Hickstead this summer. She’s now achieved again with her stunning mare Alegro Z, know at home as Zena as the pair won the Blue Chip Karma Performance Qualifier as reported here by Horse and Hound.
We love the quote from Michaela which cites Zena to be “the best horse I’ve ever sat on”. We can’t wait to see what the future brings for this partnership.
Michaela competes her horses in her Taurus Lancer Boots and loves walking the course and hacking out at home in the Holkham Rider boots. She also cites the Colorado Boots as a really handy pair of work boots for yard tasks! Why not check out the whole range and the personal favourites of Michaela Huntington by visiting the website at http://www.taurusfootwear.co.uk
Talented young event rider Jemima Gray is a brand ambassador for Taurus Footwear and we love hearing about her exploits on the Eventing field with her two horses Murphy and Foxy. With the Event season drawing to the close Jemima will be hanging up her Taurus Lancer Boots just for a short period whilst the horses have a well-deserved break before she is back out completing her Winter Dressage and Show Jumping training! But let’s not rush ahead… here is Jemima’s update from her last event of the season the Weston Park U18 Championships!
“For the last event of the season we made the three hour journey up to Shropshire for the Weston Park National u18 Championships with Foxy. It was without a doubt one of the best weekends of my life, I spent it doing my favourite sport with amazing friends, set in a beautiful park – what more could an eventer want!
We arrived at Weston on Friday for the rider briefing and one of the many course walks, I worked Foxy that afternoon and he seemed to be in really good form and produced some lovely work. Our dressage was very early on Saturday morning, so after a chilly night in the horsebox, Foxy and I performed our test. He tried very hard but I wasn’t expecting a brilliant mark as there were over 60 competitors in our section and his dressage isn’t his strongest phase. However I was thrilled (and very surprised!) to see that we got a mark of 29.3, putting us in 12th place after the first phase, and Central Team in 4th.
I thought the XC course was lovely, very nicely built and on flat ground and as Foxy is only 14.2hh the aim was to really crack on to get inside the time. The show jumping was on Sunday morning and after being cooped up in his stable for a couple of days (he’s normally out all the time at home) Foxy was feeling ridiculously fresh for his 18 years, despite being worked and hacked twice a day. The lack of breaks led to a disappointing two poles down, he jumped beautifully but just got away from me slightly, becoming very bossy and defiant!
However his excess energy was certainly useful on the XC course, he flew round clear and inside the time, finishing just as he’d started – very fresh! I was thrilled to complete as this time last year we weren’t sure if he’d compete again and I just loved seeing him enjoying himself. To finish off the weekend, Central Team ended up winning the team competition, there was a lot of screaming and excitement involved – what an amazing experience!
As I write this I can see Foxy and Murphs romping round the fields bucking and squealing, clearly having a very eventful holiday! They will come back into work mid-November and then we’ll get cracking with winter training, mostly dressage for Fox and mostly show jumping for Murphs! To stop myself from getting bored with the lack of riding, and to get a much loved adrenaline rush, I’ve managed to borrow a horse to take hunting as I am not allowed to take our horses, so I can’t wait and my Taurus Lancer Boots will be just the ticket for looking smart on the hunting field!
Jemima competes, trains and works in her range of the Taurus Footwear Boots including The Lancer Long Boot, The Kentucky Jodhpur Boot and the Holkham Country Boot. To find out more about the fabulous range of equestrian leather footwear from Taurus Footwear including the boots selected by eventer Jemima Gray visit the website www.taurusfootwear.co.uk