Top 10 Beginner’s Boots for Horseback Riding in 2021

Finding those perfect horseback riding boots for beginners is an exciting time for every new rider.

But I understand how the choice in types of boots is overwhelming if you’re new to horseback riding lessons.

To help you out I put together my favorite 10 equestrian riding boots for beginners; both English and western style.

Take a look now and enjoy your new riding journey!

Let’s start with a quick look at our top picks, then keep reading for all the glorious details.

CHECK MORE: Comfortable Horse Riding Boots

Horseback Riding Boots Top Picks at a Glance

If you see the value in these products and choose to purchase via my referral links, I may earn a small commission at no extra cost to you.

Don’t have time? Here is a quick comparison of our favorites!

Preview
Editor's Choice
Ariat Women's English Paddock Boot, Black, 10.5
Shires Moretta Clio Adult's Paddock Boot Black 11
TuffRider Women's Starter Front Zip Paddock Boots, Mocha, 10.5
Dublin Foundation Laced Paddock Boots Brown 7
Horze Equestrian Wexford Paddock Boots, Black By Horze Equestrian
Top Benefit
Uses modern footwear technology
Safe and snug for new riders
Breathable
Lace-up which provides more support
Good durability for the price
Editor's Choice
Preview
Ariat Women's English Paddock Boot, Black, 10.5
Top Benefit
Uses modern footwear technology
Check Latest Price
Preview
Shires Moretta Clio Adult's Paddock Boot Black 11
Top Benefit
Safe and snug for new riders
Check Latest Price
Preview
TuffRider Women's Starter Front Zip Paddock Boots, Mocha, 10.5
Top Benefit
Breathable
Check Latest Price
Preview
Dublin Foundation Laced Paddock Boots Brown 7
Top Benefit
Lace-up which provides more support
Check Latest Price
Preview
Horze Equestrian Wexford Paddock Boots, Black By Horze Equestrian
Top Benefit
Good durability for the price
Check Latest Price

10 Best Horseback Riding Boots for Beginners (Review)

Now let’s really dig in and take a closer look at those top picks, plus 5 more amazing options.

#1 Ariat Women’s Heritage IV Paddock Boot (WINNER)

Ariat Heritage IV Zip Paddock Boots

I’m confident I’ve put together some fantastic boots for horseback riding on my list for you but for me, ARIAT is always one of my favorites.

ARIAT has a long reputation for designing some of the best boots for horse riding and they put a lot of effort into integrating the latest advanced technology. You will notice that ARIAT offers several different styles.

I feel that the ARIAT Heritage IV Paddock boots are one of the best options for beginners. They are easy to put on and come in zipper or lace-up options. These boots incorporate all the best technology that ARIAT has to offer.

Physical Attributes

  • 4LR technology with add plenty of cushion and stability for your foot
  • Come in black or brown
  • Moisture wicking lining
  • Duratread outsole for good grip
  • Breathable lining

Measurements

  • Ladies sizes start at 5.5 and go up to 11
  • Wide foot options
  • Full-grain premium leather
BenefitsDrawbacks
Lots of styles to choose fromOn the expensive side
ComfortableCan be stiff at the start
Uses modern footwear technology
Good looking and fashionable brand
Ariat Heritage IV Zip Paddock Boots

How it Compares to Others and Why

ARIAT riding boots are more expensive than other options, but you are paying for quality and more features in the footbed.

If you want to start off straight away in your riding journey with one of the most popular equestrian boots, then these are a top choice!

ARIAT also makes great beginner riding boots for men and children.

Expert Tips

These are leather boots. You need to look after them. Even though they are durable, you won’t get the most life out of them if they are not cared for properly.

I like both the zip-up and lace version of the model, but I always lean towards laced, as I find it gives my ankles and lower leg more support while riding.

Ariat Women's English Paddock Boot, Black, 10.5
  • LEATHER BOOTS FOR WOMEN: These traditional, hard-working Heritage women’s boots are engineered with a full-grain premium leather construction, and a moisture-wicking and breathable lining to be durable while in style.
  • 4LR TECHNOLOGY: Featuring 4LR, Four Layer Rebound technology that cushions and provides optimum stability to your foot, these boots supply all-day comfort and performance, no matter how tedious your day is.
  • DURATREAD OUTSOLE: These black paddock boots come with a flexible, long-wearing Duratread outsole for superior traction and resistance against barnyard acids, oils, and slips that promises maximum durability.
  • ADDITIONAL FEATURES: These leather riding boots are complete with a padded collar at topline for comfort, elastic twin gore fit system at topline, and shock-absorbing, built-in heel cushion engineered with landing area for ease of heel strike and gait.
  • SCIENCE OF INNOVATION: Ariat excels in advanced technologies to deliver products that outperform in various conditions. Partnering with world-class biomechanical research groups and testing labs, Ariat strives to improve performance, comfort, and durability.

#2 Shires Moretta Clio Adult’s Paddock Boot

Shires Moretta Clio Adult's Paddock Boot

I love Shires for their efforts in bringing good quality reasonably priced equestrian to the market. Their Moretta Clio Paddock Boot is not different. 

These boots have a stylish, classic design that I really like. I am big into riding safety and boots that are not too bulky are important. The Shires Moretta fit the bill perfectly.

Physical Attributes

  • Black or brown faux leather
  • Moisture wicking
  • Shock absorbing insoles
  • Hidden steel strips to provide extra support to the foot

Quantitative Measurements

  • Sizes go from 6 to 11
BenefitsDrawbacks
Great priceNo wide or narrow foot options
Easy to put on and take offSome people find them uncomfortable to walk in
Faux leather makes them easy to clean
Safe and snug for new riders
Shires Moretta Clio Adult's Paddock Boot

How it Compares to Others and Why

If someone comes to me that is just starting with riding lessons looking for a recommendation, I can definitely get behind this option.

These simple riding boots are sturdy and won’t break the bank. They are cheaper than any of the ARIATs.

Expert Tips

Consider buying a size bigger, as some people find they run small. Shires also make starter riding boots for children.

Shires Moretta Clio Adult's Paddock Boot Black 11
  • Quick clean faux leather
  • Wicking linings for acclimatised feet
  • Shock absorbing insoles provide contoured comfort underfoot
  • Durable soles include steel shanks to provide anti-fatigue relief in stirrups and to help with arch support
  • YKK zips

#3 TuffRider Ladies Starter Front Zip Paddock Boots 

TuffRider Ladies Starter Front Zip Paddock Boots

If you are about to or are just starting riding, the cheap horse riding boots are perfectly OK! I feel, before spending lots on boots, you need to make sure it is something you want to continue with.

You do not need anything fancy at the beginning. You just need a safe boot that is designed specifically for horse riding. The toe of these boots is rounded and the soles have good grip without being bulky.

Physical Attributes

  • Come in black and dark brown
  • Synthetic Leather
  • Zipper closure
  • Elastic gussets

Quantitative Measurements

  • Ladies sizes range from 6 to 11
  • Wide and narrow options
BenefitsDrawbacks
A specific model for starter ridersNothing fancy so don’t expect lots of extra features
Leather linedNot the most durable. You get what you pay for.
Breathable
Cheap price
TuffRider Ladies Starter Front Zip Paddock Boots

How it Compares to Others and Why

TuffRider makes several products with beginner horse riders in mind. They aim to offer safe riding gear at affordable prices, and these boots are their best seller.

This is the least expensive option on the list, so if you are on a budget, I recommend you put these at the top of your list.

Expert Tips

These boots are water-resistant. To make your paddock boots last longer, always give them a wipe after use. Also, when you are don’t spending time around horses take them off, they will last longer!

TuffRider Women's Starter Front Zip Paddock Boots, Mocha, 10.5
  • Footwear by TuffRider
  • Starter Collection
  • Use for all weather

#4 TuffRider Children’s Starter Front Zip Paddock Boot

uffRider Children's Starter Front Zip Paddock Boots

If you have children starting riding lessons, I can completely understand you not wanting to spend a lot of money on boots, since they outgrow them so quickly.

That’s why I’m giving the children’s version of the Tuffrider starter boot its own spot on my list. These are safe boots that have a zipper, so it’s easy for kids to put on and take off.

The grippy sole also helps provide grip in the stirrup and off the horse when spending time at the barn.

Physical Attributes

  • Come in black and dark brown
  • Synthetic Leather
  • Punched toe cap
  • Quantitative Measurements
  • Come in a huge range of sizes, even toddler
BenefitsDrawbacks
Zipper closureCan run small
Not expensiveSizes are a bit confusing to figure out
All weather
Easy to care for
Rounded toe for additional safety
uffRider Children's Starter Front Zip Paddock Boots

How it Compare to Others and Why

Learning where your foot goes in the stirrup is one of the first lessons you learn as a beginner horse rider.

What I really like about these boots is that they have a distinctive traction line on the soler of the foot, which is right where the foot sits in the stirrup.

Other boots don’t have this, and it can be really useful when helping children understand this concept.

On top of the boot, it also has a strip of punched leather, which children can easily look at to find their correct foot placement.

Expert Tips

If I had to pick a boot for a child starting English horseback riding lessons, I would definitely try these.

TuffRider Children's Starter Front Zip Paddock Boots, Mocha, 11
  • Footwear by TuffRider
  • Starter Collection
  • Use for all weather

#5 Dublin Foundation Laced Paddock Boots

Dublin Foundation Laced Paddock Boots

Like ARIAT, Dublin has an excellent reputation as a bookmaker. I love the Dublin Foundation boots for beginners as they offer quality but they are not the most expensive option.

They are a great choice for a rider that wants a little more than a simple, inexpensive boot, but doesn’t want to pay top dollar.

I also love extra comfort, and these boots have a great EVA Footbed that helps create a cushy sole.

Physical Attributes

  • 100% Leather
  • Lace-up
  • Rubber soles
  • Round toe
  • Available in black or brown

Quantitative Measurements

  • Come in sizes 6 to 10
BenefitsDrawbacks
Lace-up which provides more supportNo wide or narrow option
EVA FootbedTake time to break in
Traditional, attractive look
Quality materials

How it Compares to Others and Why

My preference is for lace-up boots, as they provide more support. If you are a beginner rider, your balance and leg strength is still developing. Having that little bit of extra support will definitely help you!

Expert Tips

When you first get these use some leather conditioner to help soften them and speed up the breaking in process.

Dublin Foundation Laced Paddock Boots Brown 7
  • Quality leather boots
  • Easy Adjustment: Comes with a speed lacing system so you can slip on your boots more quickly and effortlessly
  • EVA Footbed: Footbed is made of EVA cradle cushion for optimal comfort and moisture control
  • Rubber Outsoles: These paddock boots are equipped with tough rubber outsoles to improve grip, durability and stability
  • Elegant: Featuring punched toe caps and branded nylon pull tabs for a polished look

#6 Saxon. Children’s Syntovia Lace Paddock Boots

Saxon. Children's Syntovia Lace Paddock Boots

Saxon is another brand that is on par with Shires. They offer affordable products with good looks that a great for beginners.

Some children will like how more supportive boots feel. This boot has laces, which will help the child feel more confident with their leg position in the saddle.

These are not expensive boots, but I love that they look fancier than the price indicates. I find this to be a fantastic boot for kids.

Physical Attributes

  • Come in black or brown
  • Mesh panels
  • Eva Footbed
  • Vegan Leather
  • Rubber sole

Quantitative Measurements

  • Sizes range for 10 Little Kid to 5 Big Kid
BenefitsDrawbacks
SupportiveSome children might find laces difficult
Sturdy soles
Comfortable footbed

How it Compares to Others and Why

Price-wise, these boots compete with TuffRider. Even though they are not expensive they are comfortable horse riding boots. I personally think they are nicer looking than TuffRiders, but everyone will have their own preference.

Expert Tips

These boots run true to size, but if you want your child to get more time out of these boots, consider buying a size bigger and wearing a thicker sock.

Sale
Saxon. Children's Syntovia Lace Paddock Boots Black 4
  • Vegan Leather: Made of a quality grained PU which offers the look and feel of real leather
  • Easy Adjustment: Features a speed lacing system so your child can slip on their boots more quickly and effortlessly
  • Pull-Up: Each boot comes with two side mesh panels to ensure easy access
  • Eva Footbed: Interior was crafted with a special EVA footbed that provides comfort in every step
  • Tough Soles: Exterior outsoles were made from hard-wearing rubber, making these boots great for everyday riding activities

#7 Horze Equestrian Wexford Paddock Boots

Horze Equestrian Wexford Paddock Boots, Black By Horze Equestrian

HORZE is a brand you will come across a lot when looking at equestrian gear. These are their entry-level riding boots for horseback riding.

I love how these pairs of boots have a simple, traditional style with a good size heel, so learners don’t have to worry so much about their foot slipping through the stirrup.

Physical Attributes

  • Zip boot
  • Elastic gussets
  • Faux leather
  • Durable rubber sole

Quantitative Measurements

  • Come in black
  • Sizes start at 6.5 and go up to 10.5
BenefitsDrawbacks
Good durability for the priceA little plain looking
Great beginner horseback riding boot
Comfortable

How it Compares to Others and Why

These boots are pretty level when comparing them to my other options on this list. They are affordable, simple, and easy to look after. They are much cheaper than ARIAT boots.

Expert Tips

Make sure you always give your boots a chance to air out. It will help prolong their life.

 #8 Ariat Women’s Heritage Lacer II Western Boot

Ariat Heritage Lacer II Boots - Women’s Leather Ankle Work Boot

So far I’ve given you my top horseback riding boots with an English slant. However, I know plenty of you are learning to ride western and want to know which boots are the best.

One thing I love about western riding boots, it that you can have a lot more fun with the style. English riding shoes don’t stray far from the traditional but horse riding cowboy boots allow a lot more self-expression.

ARIAT doesn’t restrict its boot-making to English riding. The Heritage Lacer is one of the more conservative options for western riders, and they don’t look much different than paddock boots.

Physical Attributes

  • 100% Leather
  • Duratread sole
  • Moisture wicking liner
  • Advanced Torque Stability (ATS) Technology
  • Lace closure

Quantitative Measurements

  • Come in black or distressed brown
  • Sizes start at 5.5 and go up to 11
  • Wide options available
BenefitsDrawbacks
Sleek and stylishSome people find them too narrow.
ATS Technology provides modern support and stabilityThe newer version isn’t as durable as their older version.
Durable material
Comfortable

How it Compares to Others and Why

Price-wise, compared to the other options, these boots are more expensive. ARIAT states this boot is good for riding and work, which some of the others are not. The decorative piece of leather over the toe makes them unique amongst the choices on my list.

Expert Tips

Make sure to clean, condition, and air these boots out regularly, especially if you use them for working around the farm.

Ariat Women's Heritage Lacer II Round Toe Western Leather Boot, Black Deertan, 9
  • ATS TECHNOLOGY: Experience stability and all-day comfort with Ariat's exclusive Advanced Torque Stability (ATS) Technology that supports and cushions the foot with every step. The Heritage Lacer II is a top choice for riding, work, and everyday wear
  • TOUGH AND FLEXIBLE OUTSOLE: These round roper toe boots come with a long-wearing Duratread outsole for superior traction. Resistant against barnyard acids, oils, and slips, the durable rubber outsole promises maximum wear resistance and flexibility
  • PERFECT GIFT IDEA: Whether you are looking for a gift for your wife, girlfriend, or friend, you can't go wrong with these classic Heritage Lacer II western boots. They even include a removable kiltie for extra protection and classic styling
  • SCIENCE OF INNOVATION: Ariat excels in advanced technologies to deliver products that outperform in various conditions. Partnering with world-class biomechanical research groups and testing labs, Ariat strives to improve performance, comfort, and durability
  • Items may come with B in tag which denotes Women's and not the size
  • Shaft Height- 6 inches

# 9 Deer Stags Unisex-Child Western Boot

Deer Stags Unisex-Child Western Boot

I think these are super cute boots that a perfect for children just learning how to ride western. They are not terribly expensive and have non-bulky soles which are safer for feet in the stirrups, especially for beginners.

Physical Attributes

  • Attractive accent stitching
  • Pointed toe
  • Cushioned insole

Quantitative Measurements

  • Come in 3 color choices – dark brown, dark grey, and taupe (tan)
  • Sizes start at Little Kids 1 and go up to Big Kids 6
BenefitsDrawbacks
ComfortableCan run big
3 color choicesSome kids might not like the pink decorative stitching on the dark brown
Lightweight
Pull strap

How it Compares to Others and Why

I choose these boots so beginners riding western had a fun option. This is a great boot for that type of riding, but it would not be suitable for English riding.

Expert Tips

Use the size chart measurement to help you pick the right pair.

Deer Stags Unisex-Kid's Ranch Pull On Western Cowboy Fashion Comfort Boot, Dark Brown, 5 Medium US Big Kid
  • Rope up some classic Western wear and get back on the saddle with the Deer Stags® Kids Ranch.
  • Cowboy boot silhouette with pointed toe.
  • Man-made upper with durable, double-topstitch decorative embroidery.
  • Sloped collar.
  • Boot straps adorn the lateral topline for an easy, pull-on fit. Man-made lining and footbed. Cushioned insole offers comfort where it counts. Durable man-made outsole with traction. Imported. Measurements: Weight: 9 oz Circumference: 11 1⁄4 in Shaft: 8 1⁄4 in Product measurements were taken using size 2 Little Kid, width M. Please note that measurements may vary by size. Weight of footwear is based on a single item, not a pair.

#10 Laredo Women’s Bridget Western Boot

Laredo Women's Bridget Western Boot

I love these because they also look great with jeans for everyday wear. However, I think they are excellent horse riding cowboy boots for beginners women.

Physical Attributes

  • 100% real leather
  • Rubber sole
  • Two tone stitching

Quantitative Measurements

  • Come in the color tan
  • 1.75-inch heel
  • 11.5-inch tall from the arch, which comes to about mid – calf
BenefitsDrawbacks
Safe sole for beginner ridersCalf sizing runs big
Made by a reputable western brand
EVA cushioned footbed

How it Compares to Others and Why

This boot is my first pick for ladies that are learning to ride western. They are not the cheapest option here but unlike some of the others, they can work for riding or casual outings.

Expert Tips

Clean these with a damp cloth and avoid oiling them as it can cause spots and darken the leather.

Sale
Laredo Women's Bridget Western Boot, Tan, 10 M US
  • Handcrafted genuine leather construction
  • Distressed tan leather design
  • Intricate western stitching
  • Comfortable textile lining for comfort
  • Cushioned insole

Things to Consider When Buying Horseback Riding Boots for Beginners

When you’re considering what shoes to wear horseback riding, beginners need to take certain things into special consideration.

Safety

While safety is important for every rider, beginners need to take extra precautions because they will not have established leg position, strength, and balance. 

Always purchase a boot designed for horse riding. It needs to have a closed toe, square heel, and a grippy sole that is not bulky or has deep treads. A well-fitting boot is essential.

Boot Fit

Riding boots need to fit correctly. A beginner will have an unstable leg, which will move around move when riding. Loose or poorly fitting boots will result in rubbing and interfere with your learning ‘feel’.

Related: Different Types of Riding Boots

FAQs

To help you out, I’ve answered a couple of common questions beginner riders have about horseback riding boots.

What does a beginner horse rider need?

dirty paddock boots

A beginner horse rider needs a proper riding boot, whether they are a pair of cowboy boots for western riding or English riding boots such as paddock boots.

Can you wear sneakers for horseback riding?

You should never wear sneakers for horseback riding. They are not safe and put you at high risk of your foot getting stuck in the stirrups. Also, sneakers tend to be bulky shoes, which is another safety concern.

What boots can I use for horse riding?

I recommend beginners always choose paddock boots or suitable cowboy boots if riding western disciplines. Even if you’re looking at cheap tall boots for riding, I’d advise against it as they do not give you the most comfort when starting out.

Conclusion

My aim was to provide a choice for everyone, with my top choice being the ARIAT Women’s Heritage IV Paddock Boot. You can use this boot for both English or western riding, even though it is not western style.

Amongst novice riders and those with years of experience, ARIAT is always a popular choice for everyday riding.

If ARIAT is out of your budget, I feel the choice for riders is on this list, regardless if you are recreational riders, English riders, or you are looking for boots for lessons.

Ariat Women's English Paddock Boot, Black, 10.5
  • LEATHER BOOTS FOR WOMEN: These traditional, hard-working Heritage women’s boots are engineered with a full-grain premium leather construction, and a moisture-wicking and breathable lining to be durable while in style.
  • 4LR TECHNOLOGY: Featuring 4LR, Four Layer Rebound technology that cushions and provides optimum stability to your foot, these boots supply all-day comfort and performance, no matter how tedious your day is.
  • DURATREAD OUTSOLE: These black paddock boots come with a flexible, long-wearing Duratread outsole for superior traction and resistance against barnyard acids, oils, and slips that promises maximum durability.
  • ADDITIONAL FEATURES: These leather riding boots are complete with a padded collar at topline for comfort, elastic twin gore fit system at topline, and shock-absorbing, built-in heel cushion engineered with landing area for ease of heel strike and gait.
  • SCIENCE OF INNOVATION: Ariat excels in advanced technologies to deliver products that outperform in various conditions. Partnering with world-class biomechanical research groups and testing labs, Ariat strives to improve performance, comfort, and durability.

If you have any questions about finding the right boot for starting riding let me know! Happy riding!

a beginner riding a brown horse

What are your favorite horseback riding boots for beginners? Please share with us below!

Siun L
Siun L

Siun is an all-around animal lover, with a passion for horses. She grew up in the United States, competing in the hunters, equitation, and jumpers. Now living in Ireland, she competes with her own showjumping horses. She is experienced in the care and training of horses, as well as teaching riding lessons. She loves to combine her love for horses with her work. When not working, Siun will be found at the stables, rain or shine.

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