Monter à cheval sous la pluie

EQUIPPING YOURSELF TO RIDE IN THE RAIN

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So you're not lucky enough to have an indoor school to ride in during cold weather? Don't panic! Even some of the greatest riders don't train their champions all year round. The most important thing is to make sure you're properly equipped to make sure the rain doesn't cut your rides short.

 

EQUIPPING YOUR HORSE FOR RIDING IN THE RAIN

 

  1. First thing to do when it rains in cold weather: use a waterproof exercise sheet. If your horse is clipped, use a sheet lined with fleece fabric for extra warmth.
     
  2. As a tip, some horses become agitated by drops of water falling onto their head, and shake their heads to get rid of them. It's quite understandable really! If that's the case, try using an ear bonnet on your horse. It won't stop them getting wet, but at least your horse will no longer feel the rain drops falling on their ears and should be more comfortable.

 

EQUIPPING THE RIDER FOR RIDING IN THE RAIN

 

  1. Protect your thighs. Have you tried fixing the exercise rug over your thighs as you ride? We'd advise against it! It's not very practical. Normally held under the knee pads of the saddle, it will fly all over the place and let in breezes over your horse's hindquarters, which your horse will probably not enjoy. The better option is for you to wear warm, waterproof jodhpurs.
     
  2. Make sure that your jacket is waterproof too! There's nothing more unpleasant than feeling water soak through your clothes. So don't forget to re-waterproof your clothes after washing them without fabric conditioner. Don't wear too many layers as you ride, otherwise you may overheat wearing your waterproof clothing as it is less breathable. The best option is to wear a lightweight waterproof jacket over a thin jacket if it's not too cold.
     
  3. Wear thick gloves that don't let too much water through. It's hard to find any gloves that are completely waterproof, but try to avoid any with mesh inserts.

WHAT NEXT?

Once you've finished your aqua-riding experience, that is where it becomes a little more complicated. You might have kitted yourself out like a pro, but your leather equipment will have taken a hefty beating. Leather and water are never a good mix. But keep one thing in mind, the better-maintained your leather equipment, the less they'll suffer in wet conditions. Here's what to do:

 

  • Let your leather equipment dry out properly at home if possible, but don't leave them near radiators or sources of heat, as the leather will harden and stiffen.
  • Once they're dry, clean and treat them as normal.
  • For leather boots or jodhpur boots, brush off any mud and dirt carefully, and close them up again straight afterwards. Once they are completely dry, you can use saddle soap and leather conditioner as normal.
  • If your riding hat is wet, never leave it to dry near a heat source. Leaving it near a heat source could impact the quality of the foam that protects your head from impacts in the event of a fall.

WHAT ABOUT MY HORSE?

Once you're back in the dry and your horse is unsaddled, cover them with a drying sheet. Don't put heavy rugs back on them straight away, as it could cause them to break out into a second sweat.

 

 

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