Brushing boots? No, they’re shin pads… and 27 other funny descriptions from the uninitiated

We may take for granted the wide range of equestrian terms we have become familiar with over the years. Therefore, it isn’t surprising when someone completely non-horsey conjures up their own term for equestrian activities and equipment.

However, on reflection perhaps their interpretation of horsey terms isn’t silly after all — they do exactly what they say on the tin (well more or less). Here’s some examples…

1. Brushing boots

Used to protect a horse’s legs during exercise, protecting the lower leg from injury.
Translated to: shin pads

2. Bandages

A type of wrap used on the lower legs of a horse.
Translated to: leg warmers/socks

3. Bridles/headcollars

Headgear placed around the head of a horse that holds the bit in place in a horse’s mouth, including reins, used to direct and guide the animal or a device placed on the head of an equine for the primary purpose of leading or tying the animal.
Translated to: hats

4. Anti-rub vest

A piece of clothing worn by the horse to prevent hair removal as a result of a rug rubbing their shoulders.
Translated to: horse bra

5. Clipping

Trimming the hair short on all or part of a horse, particularly during the winter so that a horse can exercise without getting too warm as a result of its winter coat.
Translated to: shaving


[continued below]

6. Cooler rug

A thin blanket, sometimes with many small holes in it to help a horse gradually return to its natural temperature after exercise.
Translated to: string vest

7. Cross-country

An endurance test requiring the horse to jump solid obstables.
Translated to: the fast bit

8. Dressage

An equine sport based on classical principles of horsemanship, involving taking tests designed to gauge the training level of horses.
Translated to: the dancing test

9. Feathers

Long hair on the fetlocks of horses.
Translated to: horse trousers

10. Field shelter

A structure with one open side and a roof, often made of wood, located in the field which a horse can stand in to avoid wind and/or rain.
Translated to: cabin

11. Fly mask

A piece of headgear worn by the horse to prevent flies disrupting them.
Translated to: blindfold/helmet

12. Girth

Wide, flat strap used to secure the saddle to the horse.
Translated to: belt

13. Hands (hh)

A measurement of the height of a horse (one hand is equal to four inches).
Translated to: 13.7hh/16.5hh and so on

14. Haynet

A vessel in which hay is stuffed for horses to eat from.
Translated to: hay bag/straw bag

15. Jodhpurs

Full-length trousers worn for horse riding, which are close-fitting below the knee and have reinforced patches on the inside of the leg.
Translated to: jodpoppers/yompers

16. Jump-off

An extra round in a showjumping competition when two or more horses are equal first, the fastest round deciding the winner.
Translated to: the show-off

17. Lycra hood

A piece of equipment the horse wears used to keep their neck and head clean.
Translated to: balaclava

18. Martingale

A piece of tack that is used on horses to control head carriage.
Translated to: horse necklace

19. Numnah

A saddle pad used beneath the saddle to protect the horse’s back.
Translated to: numnum, mumrah

20. Reins

An item of horse tack, used to direct a horse or other animal used for riding or driving.
Translated to: handles

21. Rubber overreach boots

A type of protective boot worn on the lower limb of a horse to protect the bottom of their legs and hooves.
Translated to: flip flops

22. Rug

A blanket intended for keeping a horse warm or otherwise protected from wind and the elements.
Translated to: coat/horse jacket/hoodie/mac

23. Saddle

A device placed on the back of a horse where the rider sits.
Translated to: seat

24. Showjumping

The competitive sport of riding horses over a course of fences and other obstacles in an arena, with penalty points for errors.
Translated to: the high jump

25. Stable rug

A blanket used to keep the horse warm in the stable.
Translated to: pyjamas

26. Stirrups

Paired small light frames or rings for receiving the foot of a rider, attached to the saddle by a strap, called a stirrup leather. Used to aid in mounting and as a support while riding.
Translated to: pedals/foot pegs

27. Travel boots

A type of boot used on the lower legs of a horse to protect the animal while travelling.
Translated to: Ugg boots/wellies

28. Working trot

The natural trot of the horse when under saddle. It is a gait between the collected trot and medium trot.
Translated to: walking trot

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