Paddock Boots Question

My poor old paddock boots are pretty much done, for the cost of replacing the soles I might as well buy a new pair for schooling. I’m wondering if anyone has any pros/cons about zippers VS laces on paddock boots.


Honestly, you don’t see many lace-ups anymore. Zippers are easier to get on and off, of course, but you have the occasional malfunction.

Not that I’m all that in the Hunter scene anymore, but I have Ariat lace up paddock boots that I bought when I was and still use to this day. My theory is: Laces break you buy new laces. $2. Zippers break you buy new boots. ~$100.

If they go under your half chaps when riding then it’s no big deal to have laces because no one can tell. And, also in my opinion, you can get a better fit by lacing up the boot rather than hoping the zipper keeps it as tight/loose as you prefer. More adjustability and less risk. Win-win.

I prefer the look of laces, so that’s what I’ve always gotten.

I always get laces. I can tighten and loosen where I want, I like how they fit/the leather can mold around your ankle, and I like the look so much better than zippers. I know that zippers are in fashion but I will always buy laces over zippers if I can.

I always get laces. Pretty much for the reasons LawsofMurph said.

I just prefer zippers for efficiency’s sake. I haven’t had lace ups for 25+ years.

The way I see it: You sit down and put on your paddock boots one time a day. If the zippers take 20 seconds and the laces take 90 seconds, the “inconvenience” is negligible and you should get what makes sense to you in terms of looks, fit and practicality (referring to replacement due to wardrobe malfunction…the aforementioned broken lace vs broken zipper). If you take them off and put them on 6 times a day because you ride that many, and don’t wear them into the wash rack with every horse, then it might add up. I like the laces, personally.

I think it’s just preference. I haven’t had laces since I was a kid and even then I didn’t untie them, I just “unlaced” them off the hooks (does that make sense?).

It is purely personal preference. I’m actually surprised to see so many people say they have laces, I mostly see zippers, have never had a zipper break (knocking on wood quickly) and haven’t had lace-up pairs since I was a kid!! So, go with what you like and what feels best, no wrong answer.

I’ve always had zippers. Yes, a zipper has broken on EVERY pair of ariats I’ve ever had, but it was a quick, cheap fix and none of the zippers the shoe repair guy put in ever broke (might even be worth it to get the zippers changed as soon as you get them). But I’ve since switched to Grand Prix paddock boots and never one had an issue (and my pair is probably 4-5 years old). I’ve never seen anyone around here with laces–zippers are definitely the fashion.

Another vote for laces. There is more flex than with a zipper and the fit is adjustable. Over time, the elastic gussets in most paddock boots stretch out so the fit isn’t as close; with laces you can cinch them up a bit more for a better fit. When you buy a new pair of boots get an extra pair of laces at the same time and tuck them into your tack trunk, you’ll feel so smart when a lace breaks.

I think this is a personal preference thing. I find zippers easier. And I’ve never had one break.

Hate zippers. I have large ankles and with zippers cannot get them zipped up all the way until they are broken in for a few weeks.

Love laces.

I haven’t had laces since I discovered zips. Laces were a PITA and were always fraying or breaking/ripping and I could never get them comfortable. I’m a tad persnickity about my laces feeling the same. I couldn’t care less about “fashion”. I care about my comfort and I just find zippers have the upper hand. I’ve not had any issues with paddock boots with zippers (Ariat Heritage). The reason I got a second pair of heritage boots is because I wore out the heels… but they lasted for many years.

Lace ups take FOREVER to put on, I’d advise just getting zip ups

As a person who has really small ankles, I prefer to have the laces because I can tighten the boot a little bit more around my ankles. I work at a local tack shop and I’ve noticed that people who are a bit larger in the leg and ankle also seem to find the laces more comfortable because they do allow for a bit more adjusting. I always buy Ariat Heritage lace paddock boots, great boots that put up with a lot of abuse before they give out on you.

I like zippers. I have had many paddock boots with zippers and the zippers have never broken even when the rest of the boot was long past dead (I wear them to death and beyond). I believe there are some paddock boots that offer the best of both worlds, laces for fine tuning and a zipper for speed.

These are the zipper/lace combo boots.

These are the zipper/lace combo boots.[/QUOTE]

cannot really recommend them. Bought them last November and they already look like I used them for 3 years :frowning: And I only wear them for riding…