Once I was ready to start riding again, I got serious about getting the safety stirrups. The Acavallo Arena was a top choice for me. I like the look and they are (gasp) reasonably priced at $195. While I love the bright colors of the Free Jump stirrups, when I start foxhunting again, I’ll get the evil eye and I have a really hard time spending $370 for a pair of stirrups. Heck, I have saddles that have cost less.
What I didn’t count on was that the Acavallos are sold out in many stores. I guess there’s a real market for safety stirrups that don’t have rubber bands on one side.
I was able to find the stirrups at http://www.olsontack.com, which included free shipping. The stirrups arrived promptly and were well packaged. They even included a thank you note!
The stirrups were well packaged and emerged with their finish shiny and unscratched. I like the black aluminum and they are a good weight — not too heavy, not too light. I’m not a fan of the really lightweight stirrups as I find it’s harder to pick them up if you lose one.
The stirrup bow is made of aluminum, while the opening arm is made of a special polyamide material. The stirrup pad is made of polyamide, with stainless steel tread.
Of course, the proof is in the riding. So far I’ve found these stirrups to be comfortable. The tread is grippy and they are easy to pick up. So far, I’ve only been walking and trotting. I’ll need to report back once I’m doing more, but I’m optimistic. Of course I hope I don’t have to test the release mechanism but I do feel a bit safer now that I’m using them!