Layering Tips for Equestrians

Learn about the three-layer system to stay warm & dry on horseback and around the stable. How do you layer up properly for riding? Here’s how you do it!


Wed 18 Jan - 23

Having a successful and fun ride starts with what you choose to wear. More comfort means a more enjoyable time at the stable, simple as that. Sometimes, however, it can be tricky to keep the perfect temperature while riding. In these cases, layering is key. So, say hello to the three-layer system! It consists of a base layer to keep you dry, a mid-layer to provide insulation, and an outer layer to keep out the weather. Mixing up the three and stripping some of them off allows you to stay comfortable across varying weather conditions and through different levels of activity.

Why is layering important?

The goal of layering is to retain heat close to your body, wick away any moisture from the body and to keep the rain, snow, and wind out.

Example: Say you’re going out for an autumn hack in the forest and you decide to wear a t-shirt underneath a thick fall jacket. You will be dressed appropriately when you leave the stable, but as you start to trot your horse, your body temperature will rise. Now the jacket is way too warm. But you only have a t-shirt underneath, and it’s too cold for that.

The solution? A smart layering system that helps you regulate your temperature as needed.

How do I layer my clothes for horse riding?

Base Layer: For absorption

The base layer’s function is to wick away moisture from your body. It works as a second skin to keep you dry and warm. It’s recommended that your base layer is made with breathable function materials instead of, for example, cotton. The latter will absorb the moisture instead of wicking it away and will make you feel cold. A good choice for an equestrian base layer would be a body-hugging sports shirt or top.

Tip: Any functional, moisture-wicking summer shirt is really an equestrian base layer. Good to keep in mind for that smart capsule wardrobe!

Mid-Layer: For insulation

The function of the mid-layer is to retain body heat and to protect you from the cold. It adds warmth and insulation to your outfit. The more efficiently this layer traps that heat, the warmer you’ll be. A good option is for example a fleece hoodie: Fleece stays warm even if it gets damp, and it dries fast. Fleece also breathes well, so you’re less likely to overheat in it.

Tip: Go for a mid-layer that has a full or half zip so you can regulate your temperature even more.

Outer Layer: For protection

Your outer layer shields you from the elements, so from wind, rain and snow. It’s an important piece in colder weather, because if wind and water are allowed to penetrate to inner layers, you can get seriously chilled. For this layer, you should go for a jacket or coat that is wind- and waterproof and has a hood for extra protection.

Tip: Go for a jacket or coat that has a material and fit that are specifically designed for equestrians. This way, you will have guaranteed freedom of movement on horseback and around the stable!

Looking for that perfect outfit for the colder months of the year? You will definitely find something in our wide range of functional equestrian wear.