It’s rodeo season in Tucson! Here in the Midtown Mercantile Mall you’ll usually find a couple pairs of cowboy boots but recently our merchant in space #777 filled his space with them! It got me to thinking about why cowboy boots look the way they do. Most of the anatomy of the boot is about safety.
When mounting and dismounting, the slick, treadless leather sole of the boot allows easy insertion and removal of the foot into the stirrup of the Western saddle.
While in the saddle, the tall heel minimizes the risk of the foot sliding forward through the stirrup, which could be life-threatening if it happened and the rider were to be unseated. If a rider falls from a horse but has a boot caught in the stirrup, there is a risk that the horse could panic and run off, dragging the cowboy, causing severe injury and possibly death.
The tall leather shaft of the boot helps to hold the boot in place in the absence of lacing. The tall loose fitting shaft and lack of lacing all are additional features that help prevent a cowboy from being dragged since his body weight would pull his foot out of the boot if he fell off while the boot remained stuck in the stirrup. While mounted, the shaft also protects the lower leg and ankle from rubbing on the stirrup leathers. While dismounted, the shaft helps protect the leg and foot from rocks, brush, thorns, and rattlesnakes.
So if you need cowboy boots come in and get ’em! And now you know that they’ll keep you safe as well! Safe on a horse that is … probably not in Tucson traffic LOL
Carol Fenn 2-2017