best riding tights

Ride in Style & Comfort: The 6 Best Riding Tights

Have you ever found yourself attempting to ride a horse in regular gym leggings and realising mid-gallop that it’s a fashion faux pas? Or maybe you’ve wondered why equestrians aren’t sticking to classic jeans. Is something more… legging-like the best option for riding?

Forget breeches and jodhpurs, horse riding tights are the hottest trend in the equestrian scene, and it’s no mystery why. They’re easy to slip into, incredibly comfortable, and packed with features to boost your saddle experience.

Plus, they’re so stylish that you might find yourself wearing them far beyond the stable – think gym sessions, yoga classes or even a casual coffee run.

If you’ve been looking for a pair of reliable riding tights, you’re about to find them! I’ve done the work for you and rounded up the best tights for every and any riding occasion.

Tights, Breeches, or Jodhpurs – What’s The Difference?

The world of equestrian fashion has seen a shake-up lately. The emergence of sportswear-inspired riding tights is offering riders an alternative to the more traditional choices of jodhpurs and breeches. But what exactly makes them different?

Let’s start with jodhpurs. These are your classic full-length riding trousers, designed to be worn with short boots like jodhpur or paddock boots. They’re made from a comfortable, slightly stretchy material and usually fasten at the waist with a zipper or button.

Jodhpurs are a preferred choice for young riders and serve as an affordable option for introductory riding lessons or occasional riding activities.

As for breeches, these resemble jodhpurs in appearance but have a short leg length, ending just above the ankle, with a contoured leg fit. Breeches’ supportive, slightly stretchy fabric provides good coverage and a flattering look, making them a favourite for professionals and riders with multiple horses.

Breeches are a must-have for competitions, offering a polished look, especially in dressage and show jumping.

Enter riding tights, the more modern option. These are thinner, stretchier and more breathable compared to traditional jodhpurs and breeches. They draw inspiration from sporty activewear like gym leggings, offering superior comfort, flexibility and a closer connection with your horse.

Riding tights are also a quick and convenient choice for riders with busy lifestyles, suitable for various activities like gym workouts or running errands.

6 Best Riding Tights

When it comes to equestrian tights, there’s a style to suit every rider, from the colours and design to the features. Here, I’ll break down six of the best riding tights – including their features, and pros and cons – to help you find the perfect legwear that fits your needs – and your legs, of course!

1. Best Overall Riding Tights – Ariat Ascent Half Grip Tights

Key features:

  • Sizes: XS-XL
  • Colours: Navy, Black, Relic (Khaki Green)
  • Materials: 72% Recycled Polyester, 28% Spandex
  • Grip style: Half Silicone Grip Seat

Designed with performance and comfort in mind, the Ariat Ascent Half Grip Tights are a game-changer for equestrian athletes. These tights are made of a super lightweight, stretchy material with solid compression. The result? You get all the freedom you need in the saddle, plus a bit of muscle support.

The sporty panels on these tights aren’t just for looks. They’re designed with mesh to promote airflow, keeping you cool and comfortable even during those intense rides. You’ve also got dual envelope pockets on both sides, which you can use as an essential, treat, or phone pocket.

As for the grip, the Ariat Ascent features a half-grip silicone seat that’s just right. It gives you that extra hold in the saddle without making you feel like you’re glued down.

Not only are they the ultimate riding tights, but they can also withstand any riding conditions. Thanks to the AriatTEK technology and flat seam construction, these tights can handle rain or shine.


  • Comfortable fit in and out of the saddle
  • Flexible and supportive fabric
  • Dual envelop pockets keep essentials secure


  • Limited colour options
  • Higher price point
  • The level of compression takes some getting used to

2. Best Compression Riding Tights – Horze Women’s Gillian Full Seat Compression Tights

Key features:

  • Sizes: XS-L
  • Colours: Wine Red, Dark Navy, Urban Chic (Muted Aqua), Black, Beetle (Khaki Green), Roasted Cashew (Tan)
  • Materials: 75% Polyester, 25% Spandex
  • Grip style: Silicone Full Seat

If you’re tired of battling muscle fatigue and strain during your rides, it’s time you meet Horze’s Gillian Full Seat Compression Tights. These aren’t just riding gear, they’re your dream tights for optimal comfort and support.

Picture this: a snug, supportive fit that’s compressive but not restrictive. That’s what you get with the compression fabric. It helps boost blood circulation, keeping muscle fatigue and strain at bay during those long rides.

Many assume that compression tights will restrict your freedom, but these do the opposite. Crafted from top-quality materials, the Gillian tights stretch and flex with your every move, ensuring you ride without any restrictions.

Whether you’re training, competing or simply savouring a ride, these tights have your back (or rather, your legs).


  • A large phone pocket on either side for all your essentials
  • The small metal pendant at the front side adds a nice touch
  • Buttery soft material that still boasts strong compression


  • Choosing the right size may be challenging, as compression wear often has a snug fit

3. Best Material – Ariat Breathe Eos Half Grip Tight

Key features:

  • Sizes: XS-XL
  • Colours: Black, Beetle (Khaki Green)
  • Materials: 72% Recycled Polyester, 28% Spandex
  • Grip style: Full Silicone Seat

We all know how riding in comfortable fabrics is key to… well, a comfy ride. Imagine your comfiest gym leggings, but tailored for the saddle – that’s the Ariat Breathe Eos Half Grip Tight. The silky-soft material of these tights strikes the perfect balance between comfort and breathability, designed to feel like a second skin.

The full silicone seat offers a secure hold without adding any extra weight or stiffness. You also have a flattering supportive waistband for extra coverage and core support. And thanks to the Moisture Movement Technology, you can say goodbye to chafing and discomfort during rides.

What I really look for in quality material tights is some kind of breathable membrane – because let’s be honest, you don’t want to be sticky and sweaty in the saddle. Ariat eliminates that with perforation at the calf side panel and waistband for breathability.

Plus, you won’t need to leave anything behind thanks to the phone pocket on either thigh that can hold all your essentials.


  • Ultra-soft material that can handle sweaty horses, dust and hay
  • Flattering fit and design
  • Very inclusive size range


  • Might be on the pricier side for some riders

4. Best for Everyday Wear – Goode Rider Shaper Full Seat Riding Tights

Key features:

  • Sizes: XS-XL
  • Colours: Black, Indigo, Burgundy
  • Materials: Nylon/Spandex Performance Fabric
  • Grip style: Full Silicone Seat

If you’ve been in the equestrian world for a while, you’ve likely heard of Goode Rider and their knack for designing riding gear that makes riders feel confident. Well, they’ve nailed it once again with their Shaper Tights.

These tights are true to size, so no fussing with measurements. They’ve got a high waistband that’s not just for looks – it’s all about comfort and keeping you secure in the saddle. They’re also flattering, especially if you’re on the tall side.

These tights aren’t just for riding, they’re great for everyday wear too, whether it’s hitting the gym or casually running errands. They’ve got compression fabric that’s supportive, stretchy and breathable.

As for pockets, you’ve got back and side pockets to bring along your phone and essentials on the ride. You also have the full silicone seat for extra grip and confidence in the saddle.


  • Versatile for work in and out of the saddle
  • Features both back and side pockets for extra essential storing
  • Affordable option compared to other riding tights


  • Only comes in two colours
  • Not as supportive as other riding tights

5. Best for Summer Riding – Kerrits Ice Fil Full Seat Tech Tights

Key features:

  • Sizes: XS-2X
  • Colours: Purple, Blue, Navy, Tan, Brown, Red, Black, Grey, Mahogany Red, Deep Purple, and more!
  • Materials: 81% Nylon, 19% Spandex
  • Grip style: Full Silicone Seat

For everyone from English to endurance riders, the Kerrits Ice Fil Tights are the go-to choice for summer riding. These are the coolest tights – literally!

Made from Kerrits’ Ice Fil fabric, they’re like a personal air conditioner for your legs, cooling you from the bottom up. Plus, the UPF +50 sun protection keeps you shielded during those long hours in the saddle. You’ve also got the anti-slip Kerrits Sticks on the inner leg and seat for a secure grip without the sweat factor.

Riders will certainly appreciate the details in these tights, like the 2-inch waistband that ensures comfort in the saddle and belt loops for a polished look. The two phone pockets on the thighs are perfect for your phone, keys and horse treats.

Even better, these tights come in a variety of colours, so not only will you stay cool but you can look cool by easily matching a pair to your summer style.


  • Great protection from the harmful UV sun rays
  • Ice Fil fabric and rip panels keep riders cool on hot days
  • Great variety of colours to choose from


  • Higher price point
  • Very stretchy so be careful with your boot zips!

6. Best for Winter Riding – Kerrits Powerstretch Full Seat Winter Tight

Key features:

  • Sizes: XS-2X
  • Colours: Ink (Navy), Admiral Blue, Raisin Purple, Leather (Brown), Black
  • Materials: 97% Polyester, 3% Polyurethane
  • Grip style: Full Silicone Seat

Winter riding just got a whole lot comfier with Kerrits Powerstretch Full Seat Winter Tight. Kerrits really knows how to put out great riding tights, and their cosy winter tights are no exception.

What immediately caught my attention was the incredible warmth provided by the thermal weight Polartec Power Stretch lining. It’s like having a cosy blanket wrapped around your legs, which is a godsend on those frigid days at the barn or in the arena.

The four-way stretch ensures you move freely and comfortably, whether you’re in the saddle or tackling barn chores (or even sneaking in some yoga). You also won’t be sliding about on the saddle in winter thanks to the silicone full-seat grip.

The 2-inch comfort waistband with belt loops is a thoughtful addition, contributing to the overall comfort and practicality of these tights. Plus, there’s a convenient zipper pocket placed right where you need it for easy access to essentials during your ride.

If you’re looking for a pair of riding tights that you can rely on to keep you cosy, warm and frostbite-free in the winter, this is your pick!


  • Keeps you dry and comfortable in cold and wet conditions
  • Great give with working in the saddle or out
  • Polartec Power Stretch lining keeps you extra warm for those cold rides


  • Made for winter, so can’t be worn year-round
  • Only one phone pockets

How To Choose The Best Riding Tights

When it comes to riding, your pants aren’t just about style – it’s a key player in your comfort, safety and overall riding performance. That means whether you’re horsing around in the stables or riding in the arena.

Grip Types

First, let’s talk about grip. Choosing the right grip seat style is a big deal for riders aiming for stability and control in the saddle.

Your riding tights can come with different grip options to give you that extra security in the saddle.

  • Knee patch: These tights have a grippy patch on the inside of the knee. Traditionally, this patch is made from suede or leather, but you can also find silicone knee patches. If you’re a rider who loves jumping or eventing, a silicone knee grip is a smart choice because it gives you that added grip right where you need it – at your knees.
  • Full seat: If you want even more grip and coverage, a full seat grip is it. These have a grip patch that covers not just your seat but also the inside of your legs down to your calf. This means you get maximum contact with the saddle, providing you with an extra layer of security.

Waistband Rise Types

Now that you know your grip options, let’s chat about waistband rise. You have three choices:

  • Low-rise: If you like your waistband to sit on or below your hips, then low-rise tights are the way to go. They offer a relaxed fit that’s comfortable and casual.
  • Mid-rise: Mid-rise tights fall between your hips and your belly button, and are the most popular choice among riders. They strike a balance between style and comfort.
  • High-rise: If you prefer legwear that sits nearer to your natural waistline, high-rise options are super supportive and flattering. They give you that extra coverage and help support better posture.


Material really matters for your comfort and performance. You want something that’s tough, stretchy and breathable.

Look for fabrics that have four-way stretch as this gives you the freedom to move and sit comfortably in the saddle. You also want moisture-wicking fabric, especially during those intense rides or in warmer weather.

Alternatively, look for fleece lining if you want winter riding tights that keep you warm, dry and cosy while on horseback.

Fit and Size

The proper fit is not only crucial for your comfort but also for your appearance. Tights that don’t fit properly will inevitably lead to discomfort in the saddle and even chafing. On the flip side, going too tight will also mean discomfort and restrict your movement.

It’s like a Goldilocks thing, you want a size that fits just right. Pay attention to the waistband, leg length and overall shape to make sure you’re snug but not restricted. This is where sizing charts and measurements will come in handy.


It’s easy to get carried away by all the cool designs and colours, but don’t overlook practicality. It’s the little everyday practical differences, like phone pockets, that can transform a good pair of leggings into a great pair of leggings you’ll love.

For example, a handy-dandy phone pocket can make a world of difference. Some pockets even have zips or envelope flaps for added security.

Keep an eye on other features like flat seams (or seamless), reflective detailing and mesh panelling.


Practicality is essential, but that doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice your personal style! Riding tights come in an array of colours and finishes to cater to every rider’s unique taste. Whether you’d like a solid colour and subtle look or something more fashion-forward, there are riding tights that can inject a bit of fun into your time in the saddle.

Take a moment to think about your personal style and the riding discipline you’re into when selecting your ideal pair. Also, keep an eye out for design elements like belt loops and closures. They can not only enhance functionality but also add a touch of flair to your tights.


English and Western riding have their own unique styles and gear requirements. English riding is all about that polished, well-fitted look, while Western riding is more laid-back and rugged.

While many riding tights can be worn across different riding styles, certain factors may matter more depending on your chosen discipline. For example:

  • Dressage: Dressage riders often favour full-seat tights for their strong grip and improved communication with the horse.
  • Show jumping: Tights with a silicone knee grip are the go-to here, offering flexibility and better grip when navigating jumps.
  • Eventing: Eventers often seek a balance of grip and flexibility, making knee patch riding tights a popular choice.


Why do horse riders wear tights?

Unlike traditional jodhpurs and breeches, riding tights are lightweight and comfortable, and provide solid freedom of movement in the saddle. They’re made to move with the rider, preventing chafing and keeping you snug in the saddle. Plus, they’re great for both long rides, quick jaunts around the arena, and everyday wear thanks to their technical and four-way stretch fabric.

Should I wear riding tights, breeches or jodhpurs?

The age-old question: jodhpurs, breeches or riding tights? Well, it’s all about your personal style and needs. Breeches are popular in English riding, especially in disciplines like dressage, eventing and show jumping.

Jodhpurs, on the other hand, are ideal for beginners and young riders, helping them get a feel for using their legs effectively.

Lastly, riding tights are lighter and offer a more lightweight comfort. The verdict as to whether they’re the best of the three is not quite in yet. Ultimately, it’s about your priorities as a rider.

Are riding tights a good choice for first-time riders?

Yes, riding tights can be a great choice for first-time riders. They provide a high level of comfort and flexibility, which is especially important when you’re still learning to ride.

Many beginners choose riding tights with a full silicone grip seat for added security in the saddle. However, jodhpurs are often the go-to for beginners as they help riders get a feel for using their legs effectively.

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