Gloves might seem an unnecessary gadget of the equestrian equipment at first sight. Such a view might stem from the fact that gloves are associated with something that hinders the movement of fingers and makes it difficult to read the horse's muzzle signals, which influences the comfort of riding. We often remember about the gloves when it gets cold outside and our hands begin to freeze while riding. However, it is worth to see that using gloves for the whole year have many advantages if you choose the right pair that is comfortable, functional, and even improving the feeling of the reins.
In this article, we will try to describe the process of choosing and the advantages of using riding gloves.
The history of using gloves begins a long time ago. It is believed that the first gloves were used by barbarians to protect their hands while fighting. At first, their shape did not resemble the gloves we now might buy at a store, as they were bags of leather. Later, a thumb was added to the gloves, which significantly improved their usefulness. The advantages of gloves were quickly noticed by the ancient Persians, who started using it while horseback riding, avoiding chafing from holding the reins. Since then, gloves have been an inherent part of the equestrian equipment.
Riding gloves are used for two main reasons. Firstly, they are supposed to protect the hands from chafing from the reins and protect the hands from negative weather conditions (cold or humidity).
There are winter, summer, and versatile (for the whole year) riding gloves. Gloves should be adjusted to the conditions you will use them in. The winter models are supposed to protect the hands from low temperatures and humidity, which is why they are usually padded and made of thicker materials than the summer ones. The summer riding gloves are more breathable. They are usually made of perforated leather and their structure is very light. You can always find versatile riding gloves that combine the features of the winter and summer versions. Technical fabrics can both retain warmth on the inner side of the material as give away its excess along with sweat to the outside.
Another crucial function of riding gloves besides protecting the hands from the weather conditions is improving the hand's grip to the reins. On the palms, the gloves are usually covered with non-slip materials (silicone, properly dressed leather or another type of material with non-slip properties). Using the so-called grip of the gloves is up to the rider's preferences. Some riders prefer a better grip, while others do not need them to act as if glued to the reins.
While mentioning the grip, it is worth to mention that the gloves themselves are prone to tearing as the reins move naturally between our fingers, which is why you should consider the durability of the gloves' material, so that they could serve you as long as possible. Most riding gloves have booster around the 4th-5th finger, thumb, and index finger.
Glove sizes are usually given in inches or international sizes (usually between XXS and XXL). In order to check the size, you should measure your hand's girth without the thumb. If the glove sizes are in inches, you should convert the girth measured in centimeters into inches. When it comes to international sizes, it is best to check the producer's size chart, as the sizes might differ between particular brands or even models. While buying riding gloves, remember that they should properly fit your hands, because gloves in a wrongly chosen size will hinder your ride and proper feeling of the reins.
We have chosen some models of riding gloves that are characterized by their usefulness and durability. The full list of gloves available at Equishop can be found here: Click here
Gloves made of light perforated synthetic skin that provides high comfort of using, perfect airflow, and durability. These gloves are covered with "Suede" material on the inner side, which resembles suede enriched with silicone. Thanks to that the gloves provide excellent contact of the hand with the reins, at the same time they are flexible, not restricting movements of the fingers and are very durable. For an even better fit to the wrist, the gloves have double spandex. Between the fingers and in the places where the palm bends, there is a special layer of lycra that expands, which improves comfort and the gloves' fit. Such a solution prevents the gloves from hindering the movements and you can forget about the fact that you are wearing them. The V-Skin model is also available in a version decorated with Swarovski's crystals on the fastening. The latest hit are the Rose Gold gloves, where the pebbles on the fastening are in the shade of delicate pink, which provides a beautiful effect and matches the rest of the equestrian equipment from Samshield that has Swarovski's crystals ornaments in this shade. We also offer the V-Skin hunter version, which comes in softer colors and thinner materials, which is why they are even lighter than the basic model. This version is black. The V-Skin Swarovski gloves come in sizes from 5 t 8 inches. The basic V-Skin model and the Hunter model come in full sizes from 6 to 10.5 inches.
Samshield W-Skin -winter gloves that combine perfect properties of thermal isolation with high comfort of usage. While designing this model, Samshield conducted research among the riders, asking what they expect of winter riding gloves. Everybody said that they want higher protection from the cold while maintaining the proper adhesiveness, fitting, and elegance. With this data from the riders combined with the analysis of the current riding gloves market, Samshield made the W-Skin model. It is made of five different types of materials.
The first layer is made of goatskin that provides high comfort, durability, wind- and water-resistance, and at the same time is very elegant. The second layer is made of a patented Thinsulate® material, which is the perfect insulator. This material was made of very tiny synthetic fibers (15 micrometers thin), which is why while perfectly isolating cold, it drains the moisture to the outside. The third layer is made of microfleece, which is also a protective layer that has hydrophobic properties. The palm side of the gloves is covered with a durable Suede material with silicone admixture. This layer improves grip to the reins and is very flexible. The last material was used to make elastic inserts - mesh material - it protects against wind and makes the gloves fit the hands even better. The W-Skin gloves come in black color in 10 sizes (from 6 to 10.5 inches).
The Roeckl Grip model was wholly made of Roeck-Grip material, which is very soft and elastic. At the same time, it is very thin. That allows the gloves to fit the hands perfect, acting like a second skin. This material provides perfect adhesiveness. The gloves are very light, which allows you to perfectly feel the reins. They are available in sizes from 6 to 10 inches in several colors.
Classic Stretch gloves from German producer Busse are very classic and elegant. The gloves are made of synthetic non-slip leather. They have elastic inserts in the bendy places. They have perforations on the fingers, which allow proper airflow. On the wrists, they have elastic welt and velcro closures with the producer's logo.
The Classic model is made of synthetic leather and multi-stretch material. The gloves are light, elastic, and well-fitting. The synthetic leather of which they are made has excellent grip and at the same time is very soft, which positively affects their usability. They have the producer's logo on the fastening and they are kept in soft colors (available in white and black), which is why this model is very versatile and can be used for training and competitions.
Properly chosen gloves will make your rides more comfortable and safer. We believe that every rider should have at least one pair of really comfortable gloves in their closet. Do you ride in gloves?