To start lessons all students must have:

*A Helmet
*Pants or Leggings
*Boots With A Heel
Helmet

Please do not buy a fancy color helmet. Each student will be given a cloth helmet cover, and at the end of Spring we will have an optional exhibition day where everyone (Adult & kid students) can invite their friends and loved ones to come watch them take and hopefully pass their skills test. If they pass their skills test, the student is presented with the next cloth helmet cover color. ( kind of like a different color belt in a martial arts class) This is an awesome way for a student to celebrate how far that they have come and feel a real sense of earned accomplishment. The students are not competing against each other; they will work to advance their own specific skills and celebrate their progress. 

 

Another added bonus to passing the level one skill test is that they can progress on to full hour group classes at the same price as the 30-minute private lesson subscription. Group Lessons are super fun because you get to build bonds with other riders in an inherently socially distant manner - because you are all on horses.

 

You can buy your helmet at:

online @ State line Tack https://tinyurl.com/2zzmwl8q 

In-person or Online @ Tractor Supply https://www.tractorsupply.com/tsc/product/troxel-spirit-all-purpose-helmet?cm_vc=-10005

In-person @ Jackson’s Western Wear in Asheville near Westgate Shopping Center.

One side note about Jackson's: the owners at Jackson’s do not wear masks and they do not require that their patrons wear masks. They are very nice though. 

Black Toddler Helmet

please do not buy a fancy color helmet:  https://www.statelinetack.com/item/ovation-deluxe-toddler-schooler-helmet/E013495/ 

*Never buy a used helmet. If you fall in a helmet you should throw it away. Helmets are single-use in the same way that airbags are single-use.

Helmet for Adults and Kids older than toddlers

please do not buy a fancy color helmet:  https://www.statelinetack.com/item/troxel-sport-schooling-helmet/SLT650530/ 

*Never buy a used helmet. If you fall in a helmet you should throw it away. Helmets are single-use in the same way that airbags are single-use.

Pants or Leggings

kids can TOTALLY wear their favorite Jeans, or the soft sort of T-shirt like material leggings, just not the super-slick shiny lycra leggings.

If you WANT to buy special horsey pants...

My personal favorite adult riding pants are:  Dublin Performance Cool-It Dot Print Gel Riding Tights WITH POCKETS. They have a printed seat pattern made of PU-silicone to help you grip better to the saddle. https://www.statelinetack.com/item/dublin-performance-cool-it-dot-gel-tights/E030602/

 

If you WANT to buy special horsey pants for kids...

Unisex Kids starter Breeches: https://www.statelinetack.com/item/tuffrider-childs-starter-lowrise-breeches/E003571/

Boots With

A Heel:

Kids boots: Kids can wear any little rubber rain boots that have a heel. They do not NEED new boots. But if you want to buy them new boots, check out these: Dublin Kids' Universal Boots at Tractor Supply https://www.tractorsupply.com/tsc/product/dublin-kids-universal-boots

 

Adult & Teen Boots: Adults and kids that wear adult shoe sizes, should really buy themselves a pair of riding boots. Adult rain boots or muck boots are often too wide and could potentially get stuck in the stirrup. Zip back boots are one of the greatest boot innovations. They make getting boots off and on SO much easier. These boots at Tractor Supply look like a good combination of form, function and affordable.

TuffRider  Women's Starter Back Zip Field Boots in Synthetic Leather https://www.tractorsupply.com/tsc/product/tuffrider-womens-starter-back-zip-field-boots-in-synthetic-leather-3052

These are all pieces of safety gear. Here is how each piece protects the rider:

I always prefer to know the why behind things.

Pants or Leggings

protect your legs from getting pinched by the saddle leathers. Slippery lycra leggings just make it more likely that you will slip out of the saddle.

 

When I was a kid growing up in Georgia I basically lived on my horse's back during the summers. It gets REALLY hot in Georgia in the summer. Sometimes it was a bummer wearing pants in all of that heat. So, sometimes I would ride in shorts with just my short lace up paddock boots. By the end of each ride, the inside of my calves would often be bloody from where the leathers had pinched the skin to the point of rupture. Yet STILL because I was a difficult headstrong girl who HATED the heat I would do it, I would continue to ride in shorts. My poor mother.

 

My FAVORITE thing to ride in now is riding leggings with special grippy dots on the seat and interior leg that literally hug onto the horse. But you do not have to buy fancy ridding leggings just to get started.

Heel On

Your Boot

Prevents your foot from slipping through the stirrup and thus prevents you from getting dragged a long the ground in the event that you fall off of the horse.

 

*When I was in High School I took a family friend out riding with me and she INSISTED that she would be fine just wearing her Converse. Later that afternoon I watched as she tried a jump that was beyond her ability, she fell off, her stupid Converse got stuck in the stirrup, she got dragged, her dragging body freaked out the horse even more and the horse stepped on her hands multliple times while trying to escape the terrifying dragging thing on its side. Luckily I had MADE her wear a helmet. So, she ended up with a cracked rib and multiple broken fingers but NO HEAD trauma. IF SHE HAD JUST WORN BOOTS instead of converse she would have fallen off on her bum onto the soft dirt. Sure she might have gotten a few bruises but she would not have had anywhere near the injury that her converse caused.

 

I do not mention this story to scare anyone. Just to illustrate that when I make recommendations they are based on safety for you and safety for the horse.

The Helmet

Protects your head, enough said.