Safety stirrups can affect your riding experience at horse shows: here's how

Everyone who enters a horse show wants to do their best and to show what they are capable of with their horse. Competitors want to perform flawlessly and possibly even snag a ribbon, so they will do whatever they can to maximize their chances. Did you know that even choosing the right kind of safety stirrups can affect your peformance?

In this article, we will look at how safety stirrups and magnetic safety stirrups can affect your performance in the show ring. 

What are safety stirrups?

Safety stirrups are stirrups that have been designed with a safety release mechanism with the goal of minimizing the risk of a serious injury in case of an accident. 

Typically this means a safety mechanism that releases the rider's foot when pressure is applied. The aim is to decrease the risk of the rider getting caught in the stirrups during a fall, which could cause a serious injury.

Nowadays, the market is full of different kind of safety stirrups, all with their own release mechanisms and features.

Because there are so many brands and stirrup models from which to choose, riders have to do some serious comparisons and to think what kind of features are important to them. 

Looking to compare stirrups? Read our article about stirrup comparison.

How can safety stirrups affect performance at horse shows?

You go to a horse show to perform at your best, to show off your skills, and to beat the competition. Sometimes it's the little things that matter and even your safety stirrups can play a part in your success.

Have you ever ridden in a saddle that was uncomfortable? Maybe the knee pads didn't support you enough or the saddle was very slippery. Or maybe your reins were uncomfortable to hold on to. Perhaps your gloves became slippery from the rain and your reins kept slipping. 

All of this can affect your performance. 

What happens if your safety stirrups are too slippery from mud or rain? Or if you lose your stirrup during a Grand Prix course? At the very least, it might affect focus and concentration if nothing else. 

When you choose the right safety stirrups, they can aid you in performing at your best. 

How can safety stirrups help me at shows?

Now you're probably wondering how safety stirrups can even help you at shows. 

When you choose the right kind of safety stirrups, there are many things you may (or may not) notice in your riding.

Security and safety

When you know your stirrups are safe and designed to minimize the risk of a serious injury, you will feel safer and more confident. Also, if your stirrups have a good treading, you can expect to feel more secure with your foot in the stirrups: when the risk of slipping is lower, you will be able to focus better.

Focus and concentration

Knowing you can rely on your stirrups can allow you to focus better. When you can trust that your foot doesn't slip and that it stays in the correct spot, you will be able to focus on the task at hand instead of worrying about your stirrups.

Improved posture and balance

Good safety stirrups that help you to keep your foot in the right place can also improve your balance and posture. This is because there is a direct correlation between your leg position and your hips and shoulders. When you find the correct position, your balance will automatically improve.

What to look for in good safety stirrups?

What you need to look for in your safety stirrups ultimately depends on your discipline and what kind of features you need. 

Whereas for some riders good treading is the most important element, for some it may be the best safety release mechanism, and so on. 

Below, we have listed some essential features to look for in your stirrups:

  • Safety release mechanism: this is obviously the most important feature in safety stirrups. After all, you want to ensure that you're as safe as possible during your ride.
  • Treading: treading is essential especially for showjumpers, hunters, and eventers.
  • Material: safety stirrups can be made of plastic, aluminum, stainless steel, or even titanium. 
  • Weight: this relates to material, and you need to figure out if you prefer lighter weight stirrups or heavier ones. 
  • Price: typically, you get what you pay for, so don't be afraid to invest in a good pair of safety stirrups.
  • Any other features: such as a magnetic connection or integrated dampening.

Ophena stirrups for better riding experience

Not many can say that their stirrup brand has received over 1,500 five-star reviews, but we can! Our Ophena S, Ophena S Pro, and Ophena A safety stirrups have received excellent reviews from amateurs and professionals all over the world. 

This is because our stirrups can make your whole riding experience better in many ways. In fact, you might not want to use any other stirrups after trying ours.

Ophena S and Ophena S Pro magnetic safety stirrups

Ophena S and Ophena S Pro are our magnetic safety stirrup models that have taken the world by storm. 

This is what you can expect to see in our magnetic safety stirrups:

  • Open design for easier release of the foot
  • Magnetic connection to keep your foot in place
  • Smart Attach™ -system for easier attachment and detachment of your stirrup leathers
  • Excellent treading
  • Beautiful design

Our magnetic safety stirrups have been approved for FEI showjumping, allowing also showing at bigger events.

Many of our customers have reported to have experienced the following when using our stirrups:

  • Improved balance and posture
  • Better focus and concentration
  • Decreased knee, hip, and joint pain
  • Increased feeling of security

In the video below, you can see how Ophena S and Ophena S Pro work:

How can our magnetic safety stirrups help you at shows?

The one big perk of our magnetic safety stirrups we want to highlight is, of course, the magnetic connection. 

The magnetic connection between your boot and the stirrups pulls your foot in the correct spot and keeps it there throughout the ride. This can help you to correct your lower leg and foot position, allowing you to improve your posture and balance. 

Also, it decreases the risk of losing your stirrup during a ride. This can come in handy especially when jumping. In addition, should you lose your stirrup anyway, the magnetic connection will help you to get your stirrup back quicker. 

This allows you to focus on your course better without worrying about your stirrups.

Ophena A is a choice for any discipline

While our Ophena S and Ophena S Pro magnetic safety stirrups are amazing, they are not allowed at dressage shows (para-dressage excluded). This is why we designed Ophena A, a non-magnetic safety stirrup that's suitable for all disciplines. 

Ophena A features patent-pending technology called The Twister: a silicone piece on the outer side that anchors at two points and releases in all directions when pressure is applied. 

Also, we have to highlight the integrated dampening feature that allows for better shock absorption and can decrease knee and joint pain during a ride. 

How can I get Ophena safety stirrups?

Ophena safety stirrups are exclusively available only at You can order them online on our website with a 60-day moneyback guarantee: that's how firmly we believe you will love these stirrups.

Here's how you can order your own safety stirrups online:

  1. Choose the stirrup model you want (Ophena S, Ophena S Pro, Ophena A)
  2. Choose the color (silver or black)
  3. Choose the size of your magnetic insoles (for magnetic safety stirrups)
  4. Decide if you want your stirrups engraved
  5. Fill in your shipping details

Your new safety stirrups will ship to you in no time and you will be able to try them out for yourself.

 Questions? Contact us via email or social media.