Layers

Highland Rambler

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Hi guys, I'm new here so my first post is regarding my little 8yr old sister who is a keen horse rider :). She goes to lessons once a week which I drive her to so my first question is regarding staying warm whilst at her lesson because it's very cold and wet here sometimes.

I usually make her wear waterproof trousers in case she falls off and also a warm waterproof jacket which I always insist she zips up as well.

Is that too much or should I be making her wear extra layers?
 

Jessey

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Dec 20, 2004
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Hi welcome :) remember you will feel the cold much more than she will while you are waiting for her, a lesson can really get your blood pumping. At this time of year I wouldn't wear much more than a light jacket/windbreaker generally, but I've not worn any jacket for weeks as it's been warm here, that could be quite different for your location though. I tend to wear about the same as I would if I were going walking/hiking, if that's a better guide :) I'd be saving the layers for winter when it's really cold and wet :)
 

Mary Poppins

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If I am having a riding lesson I will wear a T shirt, even in the middle of winter. Riding makes you very hot. Waterproof trousers will also be slippy and uncomfortable to ride in. If she falls off and gets a bit wet, surely this isn’t the end of the world? Part of the fun of riding is getting wet and dirty.

I have a 9 year old son who is more than capable of picking his own clothes and telling me if he is hot or cold. I would suggest that you get your sister a pair of jodhpurs and a light top to ride in. Bring a coat and if she gets cold she can pop it on.
 

Pete's Mum

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Jun 4, 2014
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What a caring big sister you are!

Layers are certainly the way to go, I find :)

At the moment, I'm generally riding in a light t-shirt or vest top, but last night I rode in a fleece jacket too as there was a definite chill in the air. In the Spring/Autumn/Winter I tend to prefer sports materials tops - you can get them in various thicknesses and long/short sleeve versions - as they are much better at wicking away sweat and keeping cool or warm as required. I get mine from sports shops like Sports Direct, rather than a horsey brand as you save so much money :)

Then I layer with fleeces, jumpers or softshell jackets, gilets and coats as required.

Your sister might prefer waterproof jodhpurs rather than waterproof trousers - Decathalon do reasonably priced ones.
 

Skib

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Dec 21, 2003
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The blood temperature of a horse is higher than it is for humans. And how warm a rider gets will depend on how active the lesson is. Rising trot and canter keep one warmer than a lesson meticulously placing the feet of the horse in walk or a riding class where the child may wait for their turn at the back of a line..
My grandchildren always wore body protectors when they rode. It is in any case compulsory for children in England to wear bps when being taught to jump at riding schools. Like some others on this forum I wear a bp. In a bp. one's body is insulated and one may only need a light waterproof jacket to keep the rain off one's arms. Few people bother with waterproof trousers when riding. Unless one is out hacking all day.
However one does need to look out for cold feet when riding. A thin thermal sock plus a thicker one under the boot is a good idea in winter as children's riding boots are usually quite thin to keep the price down. One should keep one's feet warm when the temperature is freezing as the feet need to be flexible for landing on when dismounting. Otherwise one may injure one's feet landing on icy ground.
And one should always wear gloves to ride or lead horses to prevent ones hands getting rubbed by the ropes.
 

Huggy

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Nov 11, 2018
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Hi and welcome! I agree with all the above - layers are the way to go. I find I get so much warmth from my horse when it's chilly, I'm rarely cold when riding. Always worth having an extra layer to pop on your sister when she gets off - that's when she'll feel it. As for you, hanging around is the coldest job - warm, dry, feet hands and head are the key!
 

Highland Rambler

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Aug 7, 2019
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Thanks for the replies to this topic :).

I forgot to mention in my original post that she feels the cold so that is why I make her wear and zip her jacket and that jacket has to be Regatta, she will not wear anything else.
 

Jessey

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Dec 20, 2004
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Thanks for the replies to this topic :).

I forgot to mention in my original post that she feels the cold so that is why I make her wear and zip her jacket and that jacket has to be Regatta, she will not wear anything else.
I'm a chilly soul myself, I love the regatta softshell jackets for cooler weather (anything below about 20c for me :p ) and the regatta padded ones on winter days, with a few layers added so I can peel off layers as needed :)
 

chunky monkey

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May 2, 2007
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Hi, I agree waterproofs can be quite slippy. I ride in jeans (I know not right at a riding school), but in winter I put leggings underneath, or a pair of wooley tights. So if she rides in jodhpurs she could wear leggings or tights underneath. Does she have chaps or long riding boots they help keep your legs warm.
The last couple of weeks I've been riding in a tshirt at 7am but this week the mornings have become chilly. The last two mornings I put my hiviz winter coat on over the top of my tshirt and body protector. But I came back absolutely sweating. In reality I just needed a jumper on and my body protector.
I find I get quite hot in a lesson as it can be quite intense work. I usually end up peeling layers off as I'm over dressed. It's more out on a hack when you get colder as you are not perhaps changing pace as much. But if I do get cold, i usually trot to get circulation and warmth back in me.
Zipping up a jacket is actually better in my opinion. I hate having my coat undone, especially when trotting or cantering.
My suggestion is have spare jumper and coat in car. Better to be prepared. If she says shes getting cold you can always nip to the car and get out an extra layer. Most riding instructors will be quite happy if you had to whip in with an extra layer. As long as shes out of the way whilst others carry on the lesson, you can hand her a jacket and you hold the horse whilst she pops it on.
 

Highland Rambler

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Aug 7, 2019
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Hi, I agree waterproofs can be quite slippy. I ride in jeans (I know not right at a riding school), but in winter I put leggings underneath, or a pair of wooley tights. So if she rides in jodhpurs she could wear leggings or tights underneath. Does she have chaps or long riding boots they help keep your legs warm.
The last couple of weeks I've been riding in a tshirt at 7am but this week the mornings have become chilly. The last two mornings I put my hiviz winter coat on over the top of my tshirt and body protector. But I came back absolutely sweating. In reality I just needed a jumper on and my body protector.
I find I get quite hot in a lesson as it can be quite intense work. I usually end up peeling layers off as I'm over dressed. It's more out on a hack when you get colder as you are not perhaps changing pace as much. But if I do get cold, i usually trot to get circulation and warmth back in me.
Hi guys, I was walking my little sister home from her Gymnastics lesson earlier (because I am a caring big sibling) and due to the fact it was raining, I asked her to zip her jacket up because she was getting soaked but she refused to cooperate so, in the end I zipped it up myself and held her hand the whole way home so she could not unzip it.

Any ideas on how to get her to obey me the next time or should I just keep on doing it myself?
especially when trotting or cantering.
My suggestion is have spare jumper and coat in car. Better to be prepared. If she says shes getting cold you can always nip to the car and get out an extra layer. Most riding instructors will be quite happy if you had to whip in with an extra layer. As long as shes out of the way whilst others carry on the lesson, you can hand her a jacket and you hold the horse whilst she pops it on.
I am the same, I don't like seeing her riding with her jacket wide open so I always ask her to zip it up.
 

Skib

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Dec 21, 2003
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Zip jackets of the normal sort may not be good for riding as they may not open at the bottom. You are right , one should not ride with one's coat flapping open in case that spooks the horse. But she could be needing to open her coat in order to spread her hips to sit astride the horse.