Rider to Rider: What’s Your Favorite Schooling Outfit?

Practical Horseman readers share the tried-and-true clothes they love to ride in every day.

I stay comfortable in my Tailored Sportsman Trophy Hunter breeches and Kerrits Ventilator short-sleeve shirt. Even though I’m just schooling, my tall field boots keep me looking professional, while my horse is decked out in his signature color, navy.
Terri Zenz, Minnesota

Kerrits models show off schooling clothes during a fashion show.

Troxel helmet, Ariat boots and half chaps, spurs, breeches and a spaghetti-strap top for my “English” farmer’s tan. Winter wise it’s a lot of worn out T-shirts and a sweatshirt with gloves.
Deann Pendergrass, via Facebook

My buttondown sleeveless oxford with the only pair of riding breeches I owned.
Brenda Bell, Texas

There have been many times where I jumped on my horse wearing whatever I had on, and Lord knows it’s not the end of riding in my PJ’s. Flannel pajama pants and leather tend to not always mix very well (actually, most of the time it hurts!) but I’d do anything to spend more time on that girl! When I do PLAN on riding however, a polo, breeches, my Charles Owen, and my favorite tall boots are what you’ll find me in.
Amanda Kine, Canada

My favorite outfit is my gray athletic pants I bought from Old Navy; they have seams down the thigh and have a green stripe around the waistband. They look just like breeches, are very flattering, and the quality is great. I wear them with a teal green V-neck or a light green tank top, my black half chaps, paddock boots and a black/gray IRH helmet.
Alexis Shaud, Florida

When I go schooling I usually like my striped Devon-Aire pants and a yellow tank top.
Francesa Spoltore, Texas

Breeches and a tank top, boots, chaps and a hat/helmet.
Rebecca Lux, South Carolina

An old, comfortable pair of jeans, long sleeve, light cotton shirt tucked in, belt to hold everything in place, my worn-out cowboy boots that have seen many a mile, pair of deerskin gloves and my baseball cap with my pony tail sticking out from it.
Melinda McClain, Missouri

To be comfy yet stylish, my dark navy riding pants are a must along with a nice top?usually a light pink or blue or whatever to match with my pants. I enjoy riding in my half chaps and short boots. They are well broken in and look pretty nice for how much I use them. My horse must be equally comfy and a little stylish too. So we use our?pretty blue saddle pad. And if I get the chance to add any sparkly hoof dressing, I use that, too.
Kristin Warrington, Delaware

Irideon tights, my favorite 007 shirt, my worn brand-forgotten half-chaps, Ariat paddock boots, bandana, Troxel helmet (RIP my favorite Tipperary helmet), and new Heritage gloves.
Emma Martinson, Wisconsin

My favorite schooling outfit: Mark Todd Tauranga breeches in brown, Ariat polo light brown, Ariat jodhpur boots and half chaps in brown, blue Charles Owen helmet, brown Mark Todd gloves, (weather dependent? Musto brown jacket)
Michelle Metz, United Kingdom

A few years ago I was out shopping in a typical, mainstream women’s store and came across a great array of polo shirts with little horses embroidered on them. They were all colors, striped and solid, and though they were no Ralph Laurens or Joules, they were not bad for hanging at the barn. I thought a couple would go nicely with breeches and boots, so I checked the price. To my delight, they were just $5 each! I bought a dozen of them in all different colors. With breeches, belt and brown boots we look quite smart schooling all spring, summer and fall.
Holly Varey, Canada

During the summer, I wear a brightly colored tank top or shirt, some old pants and mismatched socks. I also match my saddle pad to the shirt I wear that day.
Elaine Ptaskiewicz, Colorado

A pair of light colored breeches, a polo that matches my saddle pad, paddock boots and nice, clean half-chaps. I love looking professional! However, I can be happy wearing just about anything as long as I’m on a nice horse.
Ashley Bonner, Maryland

Dark full-seat breeches, either tall boots or half chaps and paddock boots, fitted T-shirt, helmet, leather gloves, and spurs as needed, riding-styled jacket (like a Mountain Horse winter jacket) or fitted hoodie as weather necessitates.
Astrid Favro-Heald, Michigan

Ariat Fairfax breeches; Ralph Lauren cotton, short sleeved polo shirt; Ariat Crowne Pro boots, Soft Touch spurs and a Charles Owen AYR8 helmet. I hate gloves and won’t ride in them unless I am showing or it’s bitterly cold.
Meredith Prechter Young, Georgia

I always wear a helmet, chaps or half chaps and paddock boots.
Kathleen Kargula, Michigan

Half chaps, retired show breeches and shirt?sometimes sleeveless?sunglasses, gloves, sunscreen and bug spray, hairnet and my helmet.
Andrea McDonald, Ontario

My schooling outfit usually consists of either jeans or TuffRider breeches I got from a friend because they no longer fit her, my IRH helmet, Ovation half chaps, Ariat paddock boots and gloves that are who knows how old. Some form of T-shirt or sweatshirt?depending on the weather, I can get four to five layers and a jacket on during winter. My horse is always groomed to perfection
Kelly Rooney, Massachusetts

I live in Colorado where weather can go from cool to hot and back to downright cold at any time of the year. In summer: shorts, tank, Ariat Terrains, Wrangler jeans, short/long sleeve shirt and jacket, if needed. Any breeches do for me when riding English.
Helena Baylor, Colorado

While I love the Ariat Pro Circuit breeches I just bought, my favorite schooling breeches are still a pair of $30 Devon-Aire front-zip knee patch breeches I bought eight years ago! They’ve lasted forever and wash clean no matter what my horses manage to rub on them. Pair them with a moisture-wicking Nike Pro Gear fitted V-neck, and it’s the perfect way to beat the heat for a summer schooling session!
Ellie Williamson, Ohio

I love wearing full-seat breeches! Whether I am schooling dressage or jumping, I love the security of the seat I get from wearing them. I also like wearing my navy Ariat polo (I also use that for showing cross-country!) I wear my half chaps and paddock boots so I can keep my show boots clean and scuff-free for shows. Of course, I also ride with gloves and a helmet.
Kat McMullen, New Jersey

My favorite schooling outfit includes my Kerrits riding tights, one of the Ariat shirts I got for volunteering at the World Equestrian Games, Ariat gloves, Ovation field boots and a Charles Owen helmet. When it’s cool in the winter, I add a polar fleece vest I got from Land’s End and a long sleeve T-shirt.
Mary Sherfesee, Florida

Read more answers to this question in the November 2011 issue of Practical Horseman magazine.

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