Riding boots are made just for that, riding horses. The classic boot comes high enough up the leg to prevent the leathers of the saddle from pinching the leg of the rider. They also should have a sturdy toe to protect the rider's foot when on the ground and have a distinct heel to prevent the foot from sliding through the stirrup. The sole should be smooth or lightly textured to avoid being caught on the tread of the stirrup in the event of a fall.
More modern riding boot tends to be relatively low-heeled, with a heel of less than one inch. Historically a higher heel was common because of its importance for preventing the foot from slipping through the stirrup. Today, only some styles of cowboy boot retain a higher heel than other modern riding boots.
Riding boots can be made in many different styles and materials. The most traditional riding boots are crafted from leather and have some advantages as opposed to a rubber or synthetic boots. First of all, leather has always been seen as the most prestigious material to craft a riding boot from. Its natural qualities lend itself very well to horse riding, as when using the boot regularly it will form a bond with your leg and its natural make-up means it will supple over time and bend and give in all the right places in respect to your leg and riding style.
Rubber riding boots are an attractive option for horse riders on a budget. The benefits of rubber over leather are its weatherproof qualities. Additionally, they can stand up well to the elements and won’t crack, leak or rot. They are also very easy to maintain and can be cleaned with water. The down side of a rubber boot is they do not breath and can be hot an uncomfortable in the summer.
Long or sometimes called 'tall' riding boots are standard competition footwear for adults. All long riding boots share obvious similarities in length with differences in styling for show preferences. The three most common types are field boots, dress boots and hunt boots. Fields boots are favored in jumping events, due to the fact that the ankle has lacing at the ankle and allow for some ‘give’. Dress boots are favored by those performing dressage due to their high styling. Hunt boots are similar to dress boots but have zippers which is especially useful for those with ankle problems or if you suffer from swollen legs after riding.