From Endurance to Dressage
I've had my eye on the LeMieux Engage Breeches for a few months. When I first tried to order them in late winter, they were out of stock. They're now back, and I was finally able to grab a pair.
As it turned out, I ended up ordering them twice. Since losing so much weight, I just can't seem to figure out what size to order in anything. And we all know the sizing for breeches runs wildly erratic as it is. I already found that in the Ovation Aquas when I had to order a size 30. Just for the record, I am 5'3" and weigh 124 pounds. I would think that would put me in a smaller size, but nope.
When I ordered the LeMieux Breeches, I closely watched the video that Katie did, she works at Riding Warehouse. Katie looks a bit heavier than me (does the camera still add 10 pounds?), but she still ordered a 26. At 124 pounds, I thought that finally a pair of breeches were going to run true to size. When they arrived, I eagerly tugged them on but was disappointed in how snugly they fit. I like some room in my breeches, especially in the summer. I promptly boxed them back up and ordered the 28s.
While the 28s are a bit roomy, I've decided that I prefer some space in my breeches. It's so dang hot here in the summer that I need a place for some air to circulate. Even in the winter I like my breeches roomy as it's never actually COLD. So while they don't hug my hips and butt, I don't really want them to. Yes, I'd like to wear a 26, but I like air flow more.
Like every pair of breeches I own, I gave these a hard wear right out of the gate. I am not gentle on my breeches which means they have to be durable to get my approval. With that said, I don't want to walk around in chain mail either. I want my breeches sturdy, but lightweight, stretchy, but not baggy, stylish, but not expensive. I can be a bit of a hard sell.
I wore these breeches several days in a row, including one bareback ride. I have to say, they took a beating and came back looking relatively crisp and sharp for another day. Yeah, they have dirt smudges, but I cleaned water troughs, climbed in and out of the fence, and rode several different afternoons. I would expect them to look worn.
The fabric on the Lemieux breeches reminds me of a softshell jacket. Dirt, hay, and feed just brush off which I love as nothing annoys me more than having bits of hay and hair sticking to me. I also like the silicone full seat slightly better than the silicone on the Ovation Aquas as it's less sticky. I don't need to be stuck to my saddle. Just give me a little texture to keep me from sliding around, and that's all I really want.
The breeches are also quite stretchy, especially since the fabric is somewhat heavy. I am not sure how much I'll love them in the midst of our brutally hot summer though. The Ovation Aquas are MUCH lighter, so I may rely on them and the Horze tights I bought last year for our hottest months.
I also like the small details that give these breeches a bit of style. The contrasting color is fun but not so in your face that you have to wear a shirt that matches. While I try, some days I am just in too much of a hurry to coordinate what I am wearing. On those days you're likely to see me in green breeches with a purple shirt. Sue me.
The pleats on the front pockets add a bit of of interest, and the wide belt loops look good while being useful. The lycra panel on the leg bottoms keeps the breeches from riding up. Can you even buy breeches with velcro bottoms? And if so, why would you?
Overall, I'd buy the LeMieux Engage Full Seats again. They come in white and a blue that they call midnight/indigo but look more like azure/sky blue. Not sure I am digging that color, but maybe it's darker than it looks. While I might not be able to wear them in the dead of summer, there really aren't any breeches that are comfortable in our heat. I have my fingers crossed that the Ovation Aquas will be cool enough for our triple-digit days.
At $112.95, I think the LeMieux breeches are a great buy. They're sturdy, stretchy, impervious to hay and hair, and pretty fashionable to boot. And as a bonus, if you order them from the Riding Warehouse by June 1, you can get them 20% off with code RWEJ, and of course the shipping would be free.
That's a hard deal to pass up. Where's my credit card?
About the Writer and Rider
I am a lifelong rider.
I began endurance riding in 1996 where I ultimately completed five, one-day 100 mile races, the 200-mile Death Valley Encounter, and numerous other 50, 65, and 75 mile races. I began showing dressage in 2010.
Welcome to my dressage journey.
About Speedy G
Speedy went from endurance horse to dressage horse. After helping me earn a USDF Bronze medal in the summer of 2020, he is now semi-retired. Speedy is a 2004, 15'1 hand, purebred Arabian gelding. His Arabian Horse Registry name is G Ima Starr FA.
Izzy was started as a four-year old and then spent the next 18 months in pasture growing up. I bought him as a six-year old, and together, we are showing at Second Level. He is a 2008, 16'3 hand warmblood gelding. His Rheinland Pfalz-saar International (RPSI) name is Imperioso.
National Rider Awards
State Rider Awards
State Horse Awards
CDS Sapphire Rider Award
Third Level: 63.514%
Third Level: 62.105%
2021 Show Season
(r) Ride-a-Test Clinic
(Q) Must Qualify
2021 Pending …
2021 Completed …
10/24-25 SCEC (***)
11/7-11/8 SB (***)
2021 Qualifying Scores
Regional Adult Amateur Competition (RAAC)
2nd Level Qualifying
3 Scores/2 Judges/60%:
Score 1: 60.610% Bhathal
2nd Level Qualifying
5 Scores/4 Judges/61%:
Stuff I Read