The beauty of tall boots is their appeal to equestrian riders and non-riders, alike. Sleek and elegant, they are an icon of the sport, attractive as well as practical. Tall Riding Boots are functional in protecting the calf and supporting the ankle of a rider. They also give a great feeling of stability and balance in the saddle.
Choose The Type of Tall Boot
Tall boots need to fit the calf - both in the length (or the height of the boot), and the width. Depending on the brand and type of tall boot you choose, many will drop at the ankle as they break in, softening with wear and becoming comfortable in the saddle. When fitting a tall boot, you need to account for this dropping, and perhaps choose a slightly taller boot (1 1/2” to 2” taller) so when the softening occurs, they are then at the correct height. This is particularly true for the field boots, which typically have the lace up ankle and Spanish top; an attractive curve that is meant to finish at the side of the riders’ knee. Dressage boots are stiffer and not as likely to drop, so this is not as much of a consideration.
A great choice are the Dublin Estuary Tall Boots. There are also new innovative designs, such as the flex panels found in the These panels allow immediate flexion of the ankle joint, eliminating the sometimes painful task of breaking in new tall boots, and arguably reducing this tendency of the ankle to drop as well. Tall boots also need to fit in the foot. Most brands will have a foot measurement and then a calf measurement, as regular or wide. Some brands will have a slim calf size as well as an extra wide calf size.
Measuring For Tall Riding Boots
You need to do two measurements, in addition to knowing your foot size, when you are preparing to purchase a set of tall riding boots:
- The length of your calf from the floor to the back of your knee.
- The circumference of your calf around the widest part.
- You are wearing your breeches and socks or stockings you would ride with.
- You are sitting down, with your leg bent at a 90 degree angle.
- If you normally have a foot size in a half size, let’s say 8 1/2, and the tall boot brand doesn’t come in half sizes, consider the typical thickness of socks you wear as a deciding factor. If you like the thin stockings, going down to the size 8 may be best, but if you like thicker socks, going up to the size 9 is advisable.
- Find a brand and style you like and check their sizing charts to know where your measurements fit in. These vary from manufacturer to manufacturer, so check with the company that makes the boots you are looking at.
Thus, it is imperative to find the right fit for you, by doing your homework, after you have accurate measurements of your leg. Then it is important to check the sizing charts and know what the manufacturers’ numbers are for each size. Because they vary between manufacturers, and sometimes by style, the boot size you need will also vary.
Once you find the right tall boot for you, enjoy the support, security and professional look that they bring!