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All right, well as we all know, the summer months are aproaching quickly! Everybody know that the summer is the most uncomfortable time of year for equestrians; long pants, helmets, chaps, boots, and everything esle can start making us really hot really fast. So how do you stay cool while riding in the summer?

P.S. I'm looking for a nice pair of lightweight riding breeches/jods for the summer. Any suggestions?
 

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I know this sounds so stupid but, it works for me. You know those little toy fans, that have the water bottle attached to the end of it and while the fan is running you get a mist of the water while it's running and than it has the little spray thing that you can spray the water on you?.

while that has always worked for me, and it cools me down during the summer days. I know very stupid.
 

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There is one product that I borrowed last summer from a friend while I was at an eventing trial, I wore it under my vest. It's a vest type thing filled with some type of gel, you just soak it in water, then while you're wearing it, it keeps you cool. The only problem is, whatever you are wearing over/under it gets wet. It worked really well, and if your riding anywhere other than a shower where you have to look good, i would definetly suggest it. I'm really sorry, but I don't know what it was called as I only used it once.
 

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ahhh im so glad this thread came up!! I know its just now getting hot in alabama but my body must not be used to the heat and after i got of of my ride i almost fainted, followed by a vomiting spell:oops::-(... worst day ever.

BUT todays ride was much better, my trick is never drink straight gatoraide- sports drink, theres too much sugar, just mix it half and half with water to get the electrolites and carbs!:)
also riding tights do a world of good instead of breeches in the summer
 

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I have found that more of the proper type of clothing is better than less clothing. I ride western and I am a stickler for what kind of shirts I wear. When it starts getting really hot, I wear a tight cotton undershirt underneath a long sleeved, light weight, light colored, fairly loose fitting cotton shirt. The t-shirt soaks up sweat and holds it, creating a swamp cooler effect and the light weight outer shirt reflects a lot of the sun so it keeps you cooler.

In my experience, that is so much cooler than wearing a tank top, plus you don't have to worry about sunburn.
 

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Kerrits do fantastic 'performance tights' that are super light weight and great in summer- take a bit of getting used to though as you feel naked! In Australia we get days in excess of 40 degress Celcius aka **** HOT! And these breeches make it so much more pleasant to cope with, particularly if teaching and riding a number of horses in the day.

I also agree with smrobs re the long sleeved shirt vs tank top. I can't stand riding in tank tops, not only is it the sunburn factor, but you have the direct sun on you making you hotter, and if you come off you can take a lot more bark off your arms than if you're wearing long sleeves or a t-shirt. I try to wear very light cotton 3/4 length button up shirts in summer to keep the sun off me but let the breeze through.

It's also tempting to wet yourself down a bit - but dont! It gives relief for a few minutes and then it makes you even hotter! - Same goes for horses, people hose them off then put them out, but the water heats up and forms a hot layer around the horse's body, scrape the water off before you put them out!
 

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What no one has mentioned yet is water, something I always forget! I used to get heat exhaustion nearly every time I rode, but once I started drinking water every 15-20 minutes, it really helped. I bring one or two water bottles whenever I'm working or riding now. And you know those exercise shirts made out of the material they use for soccer jerseys? If you can find some that are on sale they let the breeze through really well and kind of just wick the sweat away.
 

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I try and ride early in the morning, usually around 8, when it's cooler. I'm a morning person though so I'm always up anyways, if you're not riding late at night is good too as long as you have some lights. I also wear this shirt:
Dover Saddlery | Riding Sport™ Competition Riding Shirt.
I have it in white and I believe I have the same one in black and green as well but they might be different brands, they do a really good job of wicking sweat away and keeping me cool as well as dry. My mom also got me a pair of really thin breeches that I'm hoping will keep my nice and cool, they're from dover too and I think they're kerrits but I'm not sure, sorry!
 

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1) Stay hydrated. Your body can't keep you cool if it's retaining water because you haven't been drinking enough to sweat properpy.

2) Loose, lightweight clothing. I love kerrits stuff. Or you can also invest in some heat-gear from under armour. It's expensive but it definitely helps keep you cool.

And just a little tip. Wear sun screen. I don't care if you want to be tan. Skin cancer is not cool!
 

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Great thread! Nothing worse than 85+ degrees in an outdoor arena with the sun beating down on you and then being reflected off of arena sand. I got some kind of heat exhaustion one year and have been susceptible to it ever since. It's terrible! I wear irideon tights which are quite cool as well as underarmour which wicks sweat away. I'm sure all of the sports stores have some kind of moisture-wicking material and IMO it's worth it. But the number one absolute need for me is a healthy breakfast with potassium! If I don't eat a decent meal in the morning and stay hydrated during my ride I can plan on having to cut down my time in the saddle. My kitchen countertops are dripping with bananas in the summertime.

Strange- lol! Agreed, wear sunscreen. So true. Age spots and wrinkles aren't worth a tan either.
 

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Smrobs, you are more than welcome to come on up here to get away from the Texas sun! =) I think I would end up in the hospital on a weekly basis if I had to deal with the heat you must deal with! Can I hang out in Texas for January?
 

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Heck yeah. We had average temps in the 40s and 50s for most of the winter, other than the occasional really cold spell.
 

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There is one product that I borrowed last summer from a friend while I was at an eventing trial, I wore it under my vest. It's a vest type thing filled with some type of gel, you just soak it in water, then while you're wearing it, it keeps you cool. The only problem is, whatever you are wearing over/under it gets wet. It worked really well, and if your riding anywhere other than a shower where you have to look good, i would definetly suggest it. I'm really sorry, but I don't know what it was called as I only used it once.

I have something exactly like that, except it's this thing that you tie around your neck. I'll definitely be bringing it to camp with me.

I always thought that a long sleeve shirt would make you hotter in the summer, but I'll be on the lookout for a lightweight one; I'll have to try it out :)
 

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Long sleeves also help protect you from sunburn. :)
 

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Found this on another thread: EquiShopper - Cool Medics


I'm glad you started this thread, I have hypoglycemia/diabetes type stuff and being in the heat for a long time definitely doesn't help me feel better! So I need to find as many ways to keep cool as possible. Lucky for me there is lots of shade in the area (at least under the trees and in the barn) and also the place that we ride is literally right beside a lake or pond, whatever it is :p And their bathrooms are working again, so we can go in there and wash off.

Any more ideas?
 

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There is one product that I borrowed last summer from a friend while I was at an eventing trial, I wore it under my vest. It's a vest type thing filled with some type of gel, you just soak it in water, then while you're wearing it, it keeps you cool. The only problem is, whatever you are wearing over/under it gets wet. It worked really well, and if your riding anywhere other than a shower where you have to look good, i would definetly suggest it. I'm really sorry, but I don't know what it was called as I only used it once.
It is called a cooling vest, and you can find a lot of them if you just type that into your Google search box. I use these for any outdoor activities in the summer because I have MS and heat just turns me into a limp noodle.

You soak them in the tub to charge up the gel, but then you can wrap it up and put it into the fridge to get cold (or the freezer, if you live in Texas) and if you do this a day in advance it will not make your clothes wet when you wear it.

The neck thingies that have that gel in them are also pretty good - but if you are in serious heat, then the vest is really the way to go.
 

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Mostly, I'll watch the weather and either ride early morning or late evening.

Its just not worth it to me OR the horse to have to work in 95 degree weather and up! Its no fun having to watch your self AND keeping an eye on your horse for heat exhaustion! I personally do not do well working/exercising in high heat. I get overheated easily, I'll get dizzy and nauseous. I mean, I'll suck it up if I have to, but if I can avoid riding in midday, I will! Where I first took riding lessons, we had a horse that literally, fell down while trotting because he got overheated. Not cool.
 

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Here's some tips from my end of things. (I say this as someone who lives in a variation of hell -- but with more humidity.)

-- Drink something in addition to water. Get a sports drink, bring some bananas for after the ride, etc.

-- Tech fabrics are awesome. I just bought some knee-length Nike Pro compression shorts (similar to Under Armour) that were thinner than UA and the seams were less bulky, that helps me breather under my jean breeches. I also have a Nike Climacool t-shirt that breathes quite well. I'll probably pair that with a UA tank top underneath, and/or a well-breathing sports bra.

-- Light layers. As others have mentioned, it's good to get the sun off of you and then have something underneath to control moisture.

-- Wearing a helmet that allows air flow. This is one I'm trying to solve at the moment, as my old IRH allows no air what so ever, so I'm looking at some alternatives.

ahhh im so glad this thread came up!! I know its just now getting hot in alabama but my body must not be used to the heat and after i got of of my ride i almost fainted, followed by a vomiting spell:oops::-(... worst day ever.
Tell me about it! I did the same thing about 3 weeks ago. The temperature hit 90 and I had a 2 p.m. lesson. Wow. I was fine riding, but once I dismounted, things went quickly downhill. I had to have my trainer untack my horse and turn him out, because I was sitting on the floor, trying not to pass out.

The lesson I had yesterday wasn't quite as bad, but there was still some light headedness when I was done. So, my trainer and I are rescheduling my lessons for early in the morning until it cools off here ... in December. :sigh:
 
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