The difference between jodhpurs and breeches is actually more about what boots you wear them with. Breeches are tight fitting all the way down, and designed to tuck into tall boots or be worn with half-chaps. Jodhpurs, on the other hand, have cuffs at the ankle, and are intended to be worn with shorter boots, either paddock boots or jodhpur boots.  They also sometimes have an elastic strap that goes under the boot to hold them in place.  

Originally, jodhpurs were flared through the hip and thigh, and snug through the lower leg to allow for more freedom of movement while riding, commonly seen on British gents strolling around the early 1900’s in those puffy pants. You know the ones, that make it look like they must need space for an absolute stash of pony treats in their pockets.  

The word Jodhpur originates from the Indian subcontinent. The word, and the pants, were brought to Britain by the polo team of Jodhpur State. The pants we know as jodhpurs today are based on an ancient riding trouser called the Churidar. These pants were gradually adapted into flared-hip breeches, and then into the type of slim fitting jods we have now.  

When ladies began riding astride instead of sidesaddle, they also switched to wearing jodhpurs. One of the first ladies to start using this style of pant was Coco Chanel.