Best half chaps and gaiters for riders: Horse & Hound’s testers rank their favourites

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  • The best half chaps and gaiters for riders are designed to protect the rider’s leg from pinches and bruising when in the saddle and are worn with short riding boots. Traditionally half chaps were made from a suede material while gaiters were smooth leather, but as time has passed a range of different materials are now used to combine a smart appearance with comfort for the rider. Many companies producing matching sets of half chaps with short boots, although some riders prefer to mix and match brands to suit their requirements. The combination of half chaps with short boots typically provides more flexibility to the rider in the ankle area and avoids the need to ‘break in‘ long riding boots.

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    Horse & Hound has been working with a number of professional riders, trainers and yards to put a range of products to the test in a busy yard environment. And here are the results…

    Meet the product testers

    The half chaps and gaiters in this group test were trialled by Jo Rimmer. Jo is a former school teacher, who has produced a number of horses up to CCI5* level. She now combines competing with producing young horses and training riders of all ages. She is based at Fontmell Parva, Dorset, alongside her 16-year-old daughter Jess. The yard has a reputation for high standards (horses) and high spirits (staff).

    Horse & Hound’s pick of the best half chaps and gaiters for riders

    * BEST IN TEST *

    Ariat Kendron Half-Chap

    RRP: £150

    Best half chaps and gaiters for riders: Ariat Kendron Half-Chap review“I received so many comments on how smart these chaps look while in the saddle. Not only were they extremely comfortable while riding, but also were great for doing yard work off the horse. They proved to be very tough and hard wearing plus they maintained their fit while being worn everyday. Although they are on the more expensive side, they are worth the investment.”


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    * BEST VALUE *

    Dublin Evolution Rear Zip Half Chaps

    RRP: £74.99

    Dublin Evolution Rear Zip Half Chaps review“These half chaps looked really smart and were worn on the yard, at competitions and out hunting. I liked the design at the top and the bottom. The leather is soft and flexible, while also being hard wearing. I was impressed at how well they stood up to work as they didn’t show any sign of giving. The zips were easy to use, didn’t slip and have lasted, but I did find that the popper at the top came undone at random times. I thought they were good value for money.”


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    Tredstep Medici Air Half Chap

    RRP: £119.99

    Tredstep Medici Air Half Chap review“These half chaps were very lightweight and breathable – so much so that you barely felt like you had them on. The zip stayed securely fastened while riding and they didn’t pinch or rub at all. They were very breathable so my legs didn’t get sweaty. I also liked how fitted they were without needing any wearing in. I loved how easy they are to clean, just needed a single wipe over, which was a real time saver. I would normally go for a more traditional look and these are quite modern in design so their appearance might not be to everyone’s taste.”


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    Just Chaps Saltos Gaiters

    RRP: £70

    Just Chaps Saltos Gaiters review“These gaiters fit nicely, were easy to put on and had good elastic with plenty of give so didn’t need a lot of wearing in. I found that they fitted well and the plain design meant they looked good with whichever black jodhpur boots I was wearing. I like how comfortable they are and how easy they were to put on and take off.”


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    Premier Equine Windsor Ladies’ Half Chaps

    RRP: £59.99

    Premier Equine Windsor Half Chaps review“These half chaps fitted well over the Premier Equine Balmoral Leather Paddock/Riding Boots, however they were quite short and didn’t fit as snugly as some of the other half chaps on test. Although they were thin, this didn’t negatively affect their performance and it made them very flexible. I like the suede on the inside as it gave me a good grip on the horse. I’m personally not a massive fan of the colour, although they did compliment the brown Premier Equine jodhpur boots very well.”


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    Felix Bühler Gaiters Modena

    RRP: £99.90

    Felix Bühler Gaiters Modena review“These gaiters were soft, easy to put on straight away and didn’t require any breaking in. They worked well with jodphur boots and were smart enough to wear at competitions. Unfortunately the zip did clog up with mud and became difficult to use after a while. I like the soft and flexible leather, plus their overall style and look. I found they were quite baggy around the knee area, which I wasn’t keen on, so I’d suggest you try them on to check the fit prior to purchase.”


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    Horse & Hound is in the process of testing a wide range of equestrian kit, clothing and equipment, the results of which will be published on HorseandHound.co.uk

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