half chap purpose - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 9 Old 11-14-2012, 06:35 PM Thread Starter
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half chap purpose

are half chaps used in showing in paddock boots like these
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post #2 of 9 Old 11-14-2012, 06:36 PM
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Yes, half chaps are used with paddock boots. They're fine for schooling shows, but for anything bigger you should invest in tall boots.
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post #3 of 9 Old 11-14-2012, 06:38 PM Thread Starter
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what would you consider bigger
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post #4 of 9 Old 11-14-2012, 06:52 PM
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It really depends on a few things.

Firstly, your location.
Secondly, your discipline.
Thirdly, your age.

Location is important because it will have an impact on how things are done. Here, half chaps are very common [we call quality leather ones gaiters in Aus, not sure why]. I have a nice pair with suede inners which you don't see when I'm riding but allow me a little extra grip... always a good thing considering how slippery my jumping saddle is.

Regarding discipline - here, dressage riders either ride in jodhpur boots [what you are calling paddock boots] and clips to keep the jods down, or tall boots [usually, with top hat and tails as well, and therefore usually only the REALLY serious folks]. Jumpers quite often ride in boots and half chaps, because jumpers aren't quite as traditionalist or as appearance-focused, and it's cheaper to replace a worn-out half chap than it is to replace a worn-out tall boot. The calves usually wear out first. It's also more comfortable to be able to take off that leather covering your calf between classes [we quite regularly have days in excess of 100*F, that's only about 36 or 37*C and here in Aus we can get hotter than 40*C during very early and very late show season].

Show hack riders, it does vary according to age. Under-18s can't wear them in rider classes, it just isn't done. Over-18s in unofficial classes most often have really high quality gaiters, and over-18s in official classes have tall boots.

And then there's personal preference, and in appearance-based classes like show hack and hunter, judges' preference! So, you see, here in Aus at least, it depends on your discipline but either you do or you don't and mostly it's YOUR choice.

Edit; and the size of the show counts too! Schooling shows [we call them training days] tend to have a smart-casual dress code which basically means as long as you turn up wearing jods or breeches and are reasonably neat you're ok... braiding isn't always compulsory though it also isn't always optional... whereas bigger shows, regardless of discipline, you will find most people are presented to the nines with braided horses, proper jackets, the best gear... and depending on discipline [and how crazy they are!] sometimes with makeup on their horses AND themselves. Personally I find show prep and presentation bunches of fun so I like to braid and black hooves and put makeup on my horse no matter the size of the show we go to. Or for that matter the discipline. We have done eventing braided [dressage and stadium, couldn't leave his braids in for TWO nights so had to take them out for XC], show hack classes, showjumping... etc etc, although it's only the latest show that I went really mad and went the full Monty [pun intended- horse's name] with presentation with makeup and all that.


Last edited by blue eyed pony; 11-14-2012 at 06:57 PM.
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post #5 of 9 Old 11-14-2012, 07:14 PM
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Good points blue eyed pony. I didn't know that.

(I am trying to get 5 min posts to contact another user)
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post #6 of 9 Old 11-14-2012, 07:25 PM Thread Starter
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could you use it for under saddle hunt-seat and hunt-seat equitation
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post #7 of 9 Old 11-14-2012, 07:50 PM
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I don't know, ek, we don't have hunt-seat or hunt-seat eq here in Aus. We have rider classes in the show hack/hunter rings but that's the closest thing we've got [and under 18's aren't allowed, but overs are]

I don't really see what the big fuss is about tbh... here's a pic of me in mine, just as professional-looking as breeches and top boots IMO [excuse his really not-much tail braid, he has a pathetic tail atm and he was braided all in a rush because we were running late - oh and mine are a wee bit short but that brand doesn't come in heights, only sizes, and the next size up is miles too loose]:

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post #8 of 9 Old 11-15-2012, 05:33 PM
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I wear a pair of suede half chaps for everyday schooling, and I have a nicer smooth leather pair for shows. I find that when I don't wear any half chaps at all, the stirrup leathers pinch my legs, so I've always assumed that was their purpose. That, and to make it look like you have tall boots when you really don't I don't go to very large shows and I have never found a pair of tall boots that fit me, so half chaps are it for me until I reach a high enough level that tall boots are required.

At the shows I've been to (schooling & local recognized dressage shows), only very young kids show without half chaps; they wear jodhpurs with paddock boots and garter straps.
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post #9 of 9 Old 11-15-2012, 06:35 PM
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I wear them to remind me of my lower leg position lol. Lovely brown suede ones, had them nearly 10 years now. They weren't very expensive either, about $50.
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