Horse Pilot - a french brand that just fulfilled my breeches dream!
In January, we at EquiZone got a visit from the representative of Horse Pilot, a brand that would suit our clients very well. Highly functional, comfortable and durable. Equestrian Equipment of high quality, designed in Europe for a decent price.
Mainly we were interested in their innovative Airbag Vest, that comes with a flat gas cartridge that avoids the bulky feeling in the vest, but we were amazed by the nice and functional clothing provided by the frech brand. The materials all felt very worthy and their functional characteristics sounded to good, but we agreed on trying some of the products - as well as the breeches.
We tried them on here and they felt really nice, despite the fact of being a tad too small that day. However, what really got me was the beautiful colouring of dark grey and pink details (sometimes I am also just a girl) and the elastic insert on the back that was supposed to allow more freedome of movement without restricting the body too much.
And then we ordered and I asked for one pair of X-Design breeches for myself, so I could really give them a try.
I personally got them in the beautiful dark grey colour in a size M (I am 1.70m and 68kg) and they fitted very nicely, even though they fit very tight when you put them on. The tight fit is due to the compression effect, that I wasn't aware of until I saw it on the lable.
The first day of my 5 day test, was actually just wearing them all day at the office but I didn't ride in them that day due to the warmth we had that day. My horse was rather happy about getting a shower rather than training. I was quite impressed by the dirt resistance the breeches had. My horse was rather dusty from rolling around outside and I brushed her off, but no dust streaks got stuck in the dark fabric and also showering, there was no dirt sticking to the breeches and the water dried off quickly and without leaving any marks - regarding that I had worse experiences especially with dark grey or black breeches.
The second day, I got into the saddle for some dressage and I gotta say, the first thought I had was how well my core was stabilized without being restricted. I didn't wear a belt that day to see how the elastic insert would work and it felt really good. The higher waist gave me a very stable feeling around the core but not in a restrictive way. I could easily sit my mare's movements and felt the breeches move with me. Also, they stayed nicely in place and really felt like a second skin around the legs.
The next day, I had planned to do another dressage day but ended up in a spontaneous jumping lesson. Also, the breeches performed very well with giving me a secure and stabilized feeling, but my focus was on the knee grip. Preferably I ride with full grip, as sometimes I feel like sliding over the saddle too much. At the moment however, I have to ride a lot of 2-point position in order to make it easier for my mare, so a good knee grip is highly appreciated.
The grip made sure my leg stayed in place without holding it too much or sticking to one point. Again I was able to easily follow the movements before, during and after the jump. Also, the grip didn't leave any traces on the saddle .
The next two days I rode some easy dressage as I had a show coming up and I felt 'at home' wearing the breeches already and made my inner peace with finally having a pair that I really like, as I found one that looks nice, allows me to move with my horse freely but stabilized and that solves another big issue I had lately.
The compression effect was something I never realized I needed.
My legs tend to swell up during the day and especially on hot days I often had issues closing my tall boots without pain and without surpressing bloodflow.
Everyday I could zip my boots up how it should be, nicely fitting, easy to close and no pain and a continued bloodflow. The first evening I stood in my tackroom thinking that it might be a coincident but it continued during the whole week and I decided for myself that I wouldn't want to wear breeches without such an effect anymore.
During summer, I heard that more people have this issue and I would highly recommend the Horse Pilot X-Design breeches to them.
One little thing that could be better tho, is the size and location of the pockets, as the bigger phones nowadays are a tad too big for the mesh pockets and can end up digging into the hips, but with a bit of pushing and turning that problem can be solved. It would be nice to have a big deeper pockets or a phone pocket on the thigh so that during hacks it would be easier to carry a phone around.
All in all, I already decided to get another two pairs, one to swap for everyday riding and one for shows - or maybe even get two white ones (that is how much I love them already).
To everyone else, I would recommend them and to ask them to try them on, as the broad waistband with the elastic inserts give a really nice feeling during the ride and the compression effect really works and has a positive effect on the body. Also, the breeches come in a lot of different colours, from basic colours to a colourful range, which has something for every taste.
The price is with €190 not the cheapest but very reasonable for the quality and characteristics you get. For me it is for sure a HIT product!