7 Best Stirrups for Knee Pain (Reviews & Guide)

Looking for the best horse riding gear to get rid of knee pain? These gears are responsible for safer and comfortable horse riding. I’m a self-taught horse rider who has tried almost every saddle and stirrups out there. 

There are tons of options available in the market that cost several dollars but not all good for the job. So, here I am with another guide that will help you in finding the stirrups of dreams.

For all those who come to visit this website solely to expand their knowledge, stirrups are lightweight stainless steel frames that hold the feet of the horse rider. It is attached to the saddle with the help of a strap.

Finding the right stirrups (that is neither too short nor too large, but fits perfectly) is necessary as the wrong size will either harm the horse or the rider. For example, if the stirrups are short the rider would have to sit further back than the defined place so it will be an uncomfortable journey that can cause knee pain.

Since you are here for a few options to choose from, so I will try to keep my recommendations as few in numbers as possible. Let’s have a look at our top picks before we move into details;

Best stirrups for knee pain

Compositi Reflex 3D Swivel Action Wide Track Stirrups

Compositi Reflex 3D swivel action wide track stirrups are in Amazon’s choice because of their user-friendly design and durability, and a lot of positive reviews. It is not just made to give the horse rider better control but also to relieve tension on the knees and ankle.

The extra-wide tread gives a comfortable and sure foundation that helps in making the horse riding more joyful. The thoughtfully engineered footbed boosts the rider’s confidence by giving a supporting shoulder to rely on.

The light-weight design does not put any extra burden on the horses and aids in healing down the knees and ankle effectively. Made to last up to your expectations. 

Pros

  • Reliable pair can be bought even with eyes closed
  • Extra-wide tread
  • Lightweight
  • Aids in healing
  • Stay-put design
  • Sold in pairs
  • Helps to achieve the right heel position

Cons

  • A little harder to adjust the foot

HS HERM. Sprenger Germany Safety Stirrups Bow Balance 

The professional-grade HS HERM. Sprenger’s stirrups are made for serious horse riders. The wide footbed keeps the foot balanced in place even on tougher uneven roads. These stirrups are engineered to improve the joint conditions rather than putting them in a questionable situation.

The stirrups can pivot in four directions that aids in boosting confidence and performance by giving the rider the comfort they deserve. The innovative right and left foot marking make it easy for the rider to figure out which stirrups should be placed for the right foot and what’s made for the left foot.

The bow balance makes it ideal for those who want to train hard. Engineered under strict standards.

Pros

  • Makes it easy for the rider to mount on
  • Comfortable, easy-to-adjust
  • Heels down the knees and ankles
  • Prevents further soreness
  • Doesn’t put an extra burden on the knees and ankle
  • Comes with right and left foot marking

Cons

  • No noticeable defect found yet

Flex-On GC Stirrups IUG

The Flex-On stirrups are admired for the unparalleled comfort and support they provide during the intense horse riding. The Flex-on stirrups come in a variety of colors to match the needs and expectations of the buyers.

The ultra-grip footbed does not just aid in keeping the foot in place but also reduces the muscle work required for horse riding. The organically sourced polyamide material makes it highly suitable for the long haul.

Attractive colors and easy to clean handy design makes it a reliable horse-riding companion. Made to give the ultimate support and comfort to the knees and ankle.

Pros

  • Easy to clean
  • Durable
  • Comes in a variety of colors
  • Reduces muscle work

Cons

  • Got no reviews

MDC Stainless Ultimate Intelligent Stirrups

The MDC stainless stirrups hold a position on my recommendation list because it can be customized to suit the needs. The thoughtfully manufactured stirrups do not put any burden on the hips, knees, and ankles.

The three preset positions improve leg, calf, and foot movement. The MDC stirrups help in keeping the rider well mounted on the saddle even on tougher not-so-horse-friendly trails.

Available in three different sizes; 4 ¼”, 4 ½”, and 4 ¾”. 45 or 90 position choice aids in comfortable riding.

Pros

  • Available in sizes
  • Gives an improved leg, calf, and foot position
  • Relieves pressure on hips, knees, and ankle
  • Customizable 
  • Superior stainless steel rubber protected hinged bottom

Cons

  • The sizes make the selection hard

American Equus Horse Saddle Stirrups

The American Equus horse saddle stirrups are made with love to meet the needs of the owner’s daughter riding requirements. These stirrups put less pressure on the most engaging parts of the rider’s body by keeping the hips, and shoulders in line.

The American Equus Horse Saddle Stirrups has got the hall of fame jockey Mike Smith’s approval this way, ” Jockeys are in a unique position where they are doing something incredibly physical with minimal gear.

Everything has to be as light as possible so I was really impressed by how light the American Equus irons were and how large the footbed was”

Hand polished, show chrome-plated finish makes it comfortable and ultra-durable. Specifically made to keep the foot in place. Comes in wonderful packing.

Pros

  • Keeps the hips and shoulders inline
  • Comfortable footbed
  • Durable and light-weighted
  • Hand polished

Cons

  • No noticeable defect found

Freejump Air’s Stirrups

The ultimate shock-absorbing free jump air’s stirrups are wide enough to keep the foot locked in place. The foot-placing area serves as a cushion to support the rider in horse riding.

The polyamide headband is manufactured keeping unforeseen events in mind. It facilitates the release of the foot in the case of high pressure. 

To put the rest of the stirrups to shame, it can be customized according to the user’s preferences. Superior quality stainless steel makes it nearly indestructible.

Pros

  • Can be adjusted straight or oriented eye
  • Customizable
  • Super grip studs
  • Recyclable

Cons

  • Comes with a warning does not guarantee absolute safety

Intrepid International Irons Stirrups

Intrepid International has been constantly manufacturing and upgrading the horse riding equipment for 45 years. The intrepid International now appears in the list of top horse riding equipment manufacturing companies.

Intrepid iron stirrups are created to give the ultimate support and protection the horse rider needs for horse riding. The black anodized aluminum iron makes it more durable than most of the expensive options.

The low spiky grips give better control even when the horse is running at it’s fullest. The wider footbed boosts the confidence and performance to a noticeable extent.

Pros

  • Manufactured by experts
  • Provides better heel position
  • Inexpensive
  • Durable
  • Lightweight 

Cons

  • The aluminum handles should have been a little thicker

These were the few tried and tested options that have worked for me in these past few years. There are a few more that I have been suggested either by friends or acquaintances but it’s impossible to write every possible option down so here are the names;

  • Showman Aluminum Western Stirrups New Horse Tack
  • Perri’s Ss Fillis Stirrups Iron
  • Showman Lightweight Twisted Angled Aluminum Stirrups
  • Abetta Western Stirrups
  • Intrepid International Aluminum Western Curved Stirrups

All these options are known and admired for their handy design that aids in better horse riding. Half knowledge is dangerous, so let’s discuss what features should your stirrups have;

Everything you need to know about stirrups- Buyer’s guide

Choosing the best stirrup is crucial as only the right one helps you heal the knee pain. A lot of horse riders are against the idea of wearing stirrups because they think this riding aid equipment  “actually” restricts the movement. 

The actual reason behind this hate is that they have had bad experiences with the stirrups or they had been buying without following the guide or consulting the professional. There are a few things you need to consider before making the final move.

Size

The size of the stirrup plays an important role in keeping the grip intact. The stirrup is usually measured by the width, they should never be too big or too small as the bigger ones will require more adjustments and small ones make mounting on and coming down quite hard.

To find out how exactly wide your stirrups should be, you need to check how wide your riding boots are. Now add 2 inches to the measurement you have received, that’s how wide your stirrups should at least be. The extra 2 inches are added to give the rider a comfortable fitting.

Weight

Weight is another important factor that you should never overlook while buying riding aids. The stirrups should never be too heavy or lightweight as both are not good for the job. Look for balanced weight stirrups for both competitions and training.

Tread

Tread holds the foot down so overlooking this important feature would definitely bring disappointment. Most riders are comfortable with the rubber tread because the rider doesn’t want to lose the grip when the horse is in action.

As the world is moving towards advancement, there are some other materials as well that helps in keeping the foot in place. If rubbers suits you more, go for it, otherwise find the options that look more promising.

Safety

Last but not least thing you should be concerned about is “safety.” The stirrups should make the mounting on and coming down safer. It should hold you well when you are riding and releases you easily when you are done with this recreational activity.

If you keep a sharp eye on these above-mentioned features the stirrups are never going to cause knee pain. So, Be aware do not get carried away by attractive images or catchy advertisements. Make the right choice!

Bonus Tips

People often complain about having knee pain after horse riding and they are often keen to know the reason. Stirrups can cause or heal knee pain so buying the right one is important. Let’s find out how stirrups can cause or heal the pain.

Why does knee pain occur in horse riding?

Knees suffer when the horse riders are not paying attention to the length of their stirrups. Stirrups should never be longer or shorter than the requirement. So, the knee pain mostly occurs due to the incorrect length measurement.

Stirrups can cause knee pain if they are shorter than the desired length. If the stirrup is too short the rider is most likely to experience knee pain because it puts them under an extra burden that eventually becomes the reason for constant knee pain. Stirrups can also aid in healing if they are being used in the right way. 

Fortunately, the stirrups can be adjusted, if you want your knee pain to heal, adjust it according to requirements or get it adjusted by a professional. Even if it doesn’t heal the pain properly it will surely help in healing.

Whether you should ride with or without stirrups?

Horses can be ridden with or without stirrups. Most advanced riders and professionals suggest riding without stirrups or they, when the students are capable enough, instruct them to ride without stirrups. 

The most annoying thing about riding with stirrups is that they make the rider dependent otherwise the stirrups offer unmatched support and protection while horse riding.

The experts find horse riding without stirrups more beneficial and rewarding and they usually support the idea by describing the benefits of riding the horse without any such aid. The benefits of riding without stirrups are;

  • It helps you in finding the true balance without any aid.
  • It improves horse riding skills, posture, and abdominal muscles.
  • It aids in strengthening your legs.
  • It assists in gaining 6 pack abs.
  • It boosts your performance and confidence.

Riding with stirrups has its advantages as well. The major ones are;

  • It protects and supports you.
  • It helps you in building leg strength.
  • It makes the mounting and coming down easy.
  • It helps in healing the joints.

It’s totally up to you, the most accurate answer to this question would be, riding with or without stirrups both are fine. The riders should check how comfortable they are; with or without stirrups. If they are more comfortable with stirrups than doing horse riding without stirrups would be a waste of time.

Looking for more gear

My suggestion 

I would like to confess that my views are not professional and I’m a self-taught horse rider who has been riding since the age of 10. I would suggest discussing the matter with the professional and value their comment. Look for comfortability, lightweight design, and protection. Do not just solely rely on my suggestions, research a little more, compare the options, take home the option that suits your needs more. 

Lastly, I have tried my best to help you. I hope you find it helpful. It would be an honour. Happy shopping!

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