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6 Short Horse Riding Boots With Full-Size Fashion

tall and short boots next to each other on floor
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Written by Nicky H

Riding & Stylin’ in the Best Short Riding Boots

Tall riding boots look great in the show ring, but most riders prefer not to wear them around the barn, where mud and hooves can quickly leave them looking like nothing more than a glorified rain boot.

Short riding boots are a bit more versatile, offering protection around the barn as well as in the saddle. They’re also more suitable for summer when the hot weather makes wearing tall boots less appealing. A shorter style provides both comfort and breathability.

Short riding boots are both practical and versatile. They’re also great for beginner riders because they allow for more freedom of movement in the lower leg and ankle, making it easier for newcomers to learn how to position their legs and feet correctly.

Boot Basics: Why do we wear them?

Safety

Boots protect your feet both on the ground and in the saddle. Purpose-built riding boots have a 1 to 1½ inch heel that prevents your foot from slipping through the stirrup. They also support your ankles, giving you more stability in the saddle.

On the ground, even short riding boots protect your feet against sharp stones and uneven terrain, while providing a much-needed barrier against heavy horsey hooves!

Comfort

The ideal riding boot should fit snugly around your ankle and foot to prevent slippage, especially when riding. There’s nothing worse than your boot slipping off your heel just as you’re transitioning from trot to canter!

Short riding boots don’t offer the same lower-leg protection as long riding boots but can be paired with half chaps for additional support and comfort in the saddle.

Style

Even if you’re not riding, a pair of sneakers will look out of place around the barn. Not only that, but they’ll also fail to protect you against muddy puddles and clumsy horses!

Your feet will appreciate the protection, and you’ll also be grateful for the seamless transition from riding elegance to practical barn functionality.

Teamed with a pair of smart half chaps, short riding boots can look just as stylish as tall boots. 

Best Short Boot in Summary

  1. Justin Mens Rush Barley Lacer Boots

    The Stampede Rush Collection pushes the boundaries of a traditional work boot. Designed with an athletic construction and an Ortholite Dual Density Insole, these boots offer extreme comfort with a wide range of features necessary to perform in any environment.

    Buy at State Line Tack
  2. Kerrits Woodstock Waterproof Barn Boot

    Tough and sporty barn boot for the lady! These sturdy boots feature advanced technology that keeps riders feet dry, fresh and happy through long days in the barn.

    Buy at State Line Tack
  3. Ariat Ladies Fatbaby Twin Gore Boot

    Your yard-working, errand-running, concert-going, firepit-sitting boot. With a chunky lug sole and easy slip-on silhouette, it's a versatile style that's equally at home on the farm as it is in East Nashville.

    Buy at State Line Tack
  4. OEQ Winter Paddock Boot

    The heat-insulating faux fur lining will keep feet and toes warm while the water-resistant construction helps keep feet dry. The Flex Comfort, anti-slip outsole provides traction and grip in cold and wet weather conditions and is reinforced with a steel shank for support.

    Buy at State Line Tack
  5. Justin Gypsy Ema Boots

    This 8” boot from the Justin Gypsy collection is perfect for those who live western every day and want to kick up fun from the rodeos to the concert halls. It features a removable orthotic insole for an easy fit and daily comfort and a rubber outsole for durability and support.

    Buy at State Line Tack
  6. Ovation Tuscany Boot

    Tuscany Zip Paddock Boots are beautifully crafted with details that are unexpected for the price, including full-grain European leather, a perforated calfskin ankle and tongue with Cambrelle® wicking material, punched round toe, comfortable insole, and a sturdy, wear-resistant outsole.

    Buy at State Line Tack

Short Boot Recommendations

Ovation Ladies Tuscany Zip Paddock Boot

Ovation Ladies’ Tuscany Zip Paddock Boots combine style and comfort with affordability.

The full-grain leather provides both durability and sophistication while the calfskin ankle and tongue are lined with a high-tech wicking material to keep feet cool and dry, whatever the weather.

The round toe and comfortable insole ensure a snug fit, while the cushioning technology takes the riding experience to new heights of comfort.

Available in classic black and brown and a range of sizes, the Ovation Ladies’ Tuscany Zip Paddock Boots are a testament to affordable luxury in equestrian footwear.

Ovation Tuscany Boot

Tuscany Zip Paddock Boots are beautifully crafted with details that are unexpected for the price, including full-grain European leather, a perforated calfskin ankle and tongue with Cambrelle® wicking material, punched round toe, comfortable insole, and a sturdy, wear-resistant outsole.

PROS:

  • Front zip provides easy access
  • Lightweight yet suitable for most weather conditions
  • Wicking material keeps feet cool and dry

CONS:

  • Limited colors available
  • Zip may slip down while riding

Where to buy it: State Line Tack

Justin Ladies Gypsy Ema Square Toe Boots

You can work hard in these boots and look good while you’re at it, or you can team them up with your favorite skinny jeans and kick up some dust at the local rodeo.

The slip-resistant, heavy-duty outsoles will protect your feet and prevent slipping in wet conditions. They’ll also provide comfort in the saddle, supporting your ankles and stopping your feet from slipping in the stirrups.

The orthopedic insole takes daily comfort to a new level but can also be removed if your toes need a little more wiggle room.

Justin Gypsy Ema Boots

This 8” boot from the Justin Gypsy collection is perfect for those who live western every day and want to kick up fun from the rodeos to the concert halls. It features a removable orthotic insole for an easy fit and daily comfort and a rubber outsole for durability and support.

PROS:

  • Rubber outsole provides grip in the saddle and on wet surfaces
  • Block heel enhances safety in the saddle
  • The 8-inch boot stabilizes the ankle, improving balance and position in the saddle

CONS:

  • Boots aren’t tall enough to protect against chafing
  • Although water-resistant, these boots won’t withstand heavy rain or mud

Where to buy it: State Line Tack

OEQ Ladies Winter Paddock Boot

The OEQ® Winter Zip Paddock Boot is perfect for winter and will help you tackle the chilliest days with style and functionality. Crafted with tough, durable leather, these boots are strong, durable, and weather-resistant.

The heat-insulating faux fur keeps your feet warm and cozy no matter how cold it is outside, while the rubber outsole provides traction in wet or snowy conditions.

A steel shank provides extra support both on the ground and in the saddle, enhancing the boot’s durability and wear resistance.

Elastic stretch side panels ensure a comfortable fit, while the front zipper ensures easy on-and-off convenience.
This winter boot combines fashion with functionality, making it a standout choice for those seeking warmth, style, and cold-weather resilience.

OEQ Winter Paddock Boot

The heat-insulating faux fur lining will keep feet and toes warm while the water-resistant construction helps keep feet dry. The Flex Comfort, anti-slip outsole provides traction and grip in cold and wet weather conditions and is reinforced with a steel shank for support.

PROS:

  • Faux-fur lining insulates feet against cold weather
  • Metal shank supports the foot both in and out of the saddle
  • Anti-slip outsole provides traction in wet conditions

CONS:

  • Thick rubber soles could be a little bulky for some stirrups
  • Boots don’t have spur rests, so may not be suitable for those who ride with spurs

Where to buy it: State Line Tack

Ariat Fatbaby Twin Gore Boot

The Ariat Fatbaby is not just a boot; it’s your go-to companion for barn chores, errands, concerts, and those cozy firepit evenings. With its chunky sole and effortless slip-on silhouette, this boot blends rugged versatility with stylish comfort.

Designed to be as at home on the farm as it is at a concert or rodeo, the Fatbaby is a true all-rounder.

4LR™ technology provides lightweight support, while the full-grain leather foot and upper add durability and rustic charm. A mesh lining keeps things breathable, while the pull-on style makes slipping into (and out of) these boots a breeze.

With the distinctive Fatbaby® Toe, a 1.5″ heel, and a 5.5″ upper height, the Ariat Fatbaby is not just a boot—it’s a lifestyle statement for those who appreciate comfort and style in every step of their equestrian journey.

Ariat Ladies Fatbaby Twin Gore Boot

Your yard-working, errand-running, concert-going, firepit-sitting boot. With a chunky lug sole and easy slip-on silhouette, it's a versatile style that's equally at home on the farm as it is in East Nashville.

PROS:

  • Easy pull-on style
  • The 1.5” heel is perfect for riding
  • Weatherproof and hard-wearing

CONS:

  • The leopard print feature may not appeal to everyone! Regardless, there are lots of other styles available
  • Stiff leather may take a while to break in

Where to buy it: State Line Tack

Kerrits Woodstock Waterproof Boot

Tough and sporty, these barn boots will keep your feet dry and comfortable whether it’s pouring rain or blazing sunshine.

The durable leather is scratch and abrasion-resistant, making these robust boots ideal for long-distance rides and back-breaking days at the barn. The spacious toe box offers a little extra room, making these boots comfortable enough to wear all day, while a rubber toe bumper gives your toes some additional protection.

A full-grain waterproof seam-sealed leather upper guarantees that wet weather won’t dampen your equestrian spirit, while the molded heel holds spurs securely in place while protecting the boot (and your feet) against wear and tear.

The anti-microbial, molded insole keeps feet fresh and cushioned, both in the saddle and off, while a hi-tech midsole offers advanced stability and fatigue reduction.

Non-slip soles and a sturdy 1-inch heel are perfect for riding, making Keritts Woodstock Waterproof Boot perfect for those who demand the best out of every stride.

Kerrits Woodstock Waterproof Barn Boot

Tough and sporty barn boot for the lady! These sturdy boots feature advanced technology that keeps riders feet dry, fresh and happy through long days in the barn.

PROS:

  • Waterproof and weather-resistant
  • Molded 1” heel supports spurs and improves safety in the saddle
  • Scratch and abrasion-resistant

CONS:

  • Boots may run slightly larger than normal
  • Higher price range

Where to buy it: State Line Tack

Justin Mens Rush Barley Lacer Round Toe Boots

As part of Justin’s Stampede Rush collection, these boots are designed to withstand the rigors of almost any working environment. Combining the durability of the traditional work boot with a more athletic construction, these men’s boots are waterproof, slip-resistant, and protect against electrical hazards.

An orthopedic insole ensures all-day comfort, while a non-metallic shank offers extra support and stability.

These boots combine athletic construction and high-tech features to guarantee comfort and performance in any environment. Despite that, both the heel and shaft are a little low to provide true comfort and safety in the saddle.

Justin Mens Rush Barley Lacer Boots

The Stampede Rush Collection pushes the boundaries of a traditional work boot. Designed with an athletic construction and an Ortholite Dual Density Insole, these boots offer extreme comfort with a wide range of features necessary to perform in any environment.

PROS:

  • Non-slip sole provides traction in wet conditions
  • Orthopedic insole and supportive shank provide stability
  • Waterproof and weather-resistant

CONS:

  • The heel and shaft are a little lower than recommended for riding
  • No half sizes available

Where to buy it: State Line Tack

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Are short riding boots good?

Short riding boots are stylish and functional, providing support and grip in the saddle and, when paired with half-chaps, protection against chafing.

Q: What are short riding boots called?

Short riding boots are often referred to as jodhpur or paddock boots.

Q: What is the best type of boot for riding horses?

If you’re hitting the trail, paddock or jodhpurs boots give you the freedom of movement, versatility, and support you need.

boots lined up along a wall

Source: Canva

Q: What is the difference between paddock boots and riding boots?

Paddock boots usually have a thicker sole than riding boots and may also be made from heavier, stiffer leather. Paddock boots are designed for both riding and working around the barn, whereas jodhpur boots tend to be less robust, making them less suited for barn chores.

Q: What makes a Western boot “short?”

With a short Western boot, the shaft ends just above your ankle, before the middle of your calf.

Parting Thoughts

Tall riding boots might make a statement in the show ring, but when it comes to navigating the challenges of a muddy barnyard, short riding boots take center stage with their practicality and adaptability.

The freedom of movement they offer in the saddle is unparalleled, seamlessly transitioning from stable duties to the finesse of show jumping without skipping a beat.

The convenience of wearing the same pair for mucking out and jumping adds a layer of efficiency to your equestrian routine, proving that practicality and style can indeed go hand in hand.

Plus, their easy-on, easy-off nature becomes a time-saving grace, allowing you to focus on what truly matters—building a connection with your horse, whether in the stable or the arena.

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