Many riders understand the importance of wearing a helmet. You might not be willing to risk a traumatic brain injury to avoid helmet head, but what about the rest of your ensemble? Regardless of your riding discipline, safety starts at the head and continues all the way down to the toes.

Give Improper Footwear the Boot

Choose a riding boot with an appropriately sized heel; save your pumps and wedge heels for other scenarios. A moment of imbalance is all it takes for a foot to slide through the stirrup creating the potential for a nasty accident. Being dragged by the ankle rarely ends well for the rider. Wearing an appropriate boot with ankle support significantly reduces your chances of dangling upside down from an animal that flees danger first and asks questions later.

Also consider the types of sole and tread available. Avoid extra heavy or wafflelike treads commonly found on hiking and generic winter boots; these can become jammed in the stirrup.

Axe the Accessories

Bling is popular in the horse world these days. You can find it at every show, from rhinestone brow bands to helmets adorned with gems. There are many ways to stand out, but steer clear of jewelry that dangles. Necklaces, bracelets, and hanging earrings are all accessories that can become snagged. Keep your look streamlined by braiding or pulling back long hair.

Get a Grip

Gloves are highly recommended when you are riding or leading a horse. They provide protection against friction burns, calluses, blisters, not to mention the weather. They should be a snug fit and non-slip.

Dress Smart for any Season

An old adage says there is no bad weather