I've been pondering a change in spurs - I have very short (maybe 1/2") basic ones. Looking to go to a longer spur, so that I can keep my leg more quiet; also, my mare is, lets say nicely padded in her barrel and doesn't seem to really feel them. She is a generally quiet, not sensitive horse. I borrowed a pair from another rider w/ blunt rowels, and once she figured out they were there, she was moving off my calf, staying forward, quick response and I really didn't have to use them. AND she did not run thru the bridle either. But somehow not sure I should just run out and buy a pair.
What do others here use? brand, style, length, etc? The catalogs have too many choices for me to absorb...
We don't get less brave; we get a bigger sense of self-preservation........
Trial and error is the only way to really figure out which spurs work best for you and your horse. There are so many variations of each style you have to try different ends and lengths...I have the HS balkenhol spurs w/no rowel which are pretty long, then I have 1/2" knob end spurs, and just ordered 1/4" POW baby spurs and a set of the roller ball spurs...hopefully that should be enough haha
He's uber sensitive, but because of his barrel conformation, my heel doesn't sit terribly close to his side. These help me move my leg less.
My spurs are very similar and for the same reason. I started with shorter spurs and got longer ones when my trainer recommended them because it took a lot of effort and bringing my heel up to get them to touch my horse. Since my back injury I have not worn spurs because it affected my ability to control my left leg, and I told my trainer she gets to call the shots on when I put spurs back on my boots. My left leg has a tendency to go unresponsive on me and curl up with my heel against my horse. Not good news if I were wearing long spurs....
I almost never wear long spurs anyway, and currently my back won't allow me to ride in collected gaits much. I mostly use my spurs at the collected canter to control his inside hind leg activity, and sometimes to increase hind leg activity in lateral work. Those are times when I really don't want to have to totally change my leg position to get them to touch my horse.
My horse is a dressage diva so I don't have to be.
Originally Posted by katarine
If you have a fat gay horse that likes Parelli, you're really screwed
I used a smooth rowel (I think its called a dime rowel?) spur with about a 1 inch neck on my guy, an older, been-there-done-that WB. POW spurs made me move my legs too much, and the smooth rowels allowed me to whisper-and shout when I needed to
When someone shows you who they are, BELIEVE THEM.
If I can piggyback here...I will sell my soul for a pair of swan-neck spurs with an eventing-legal shank (which I had thought was 3.5cm/1 and 3/8" but is apparently going up to 4cm/1 and 9/16" as of November). I can find plenty with a 2" shank but that is no bueno in the ring for me, so...help? Does such a critter exist? (Thanks!)
The swan necks can be great for flat work because they give you a little extra reach and allow you to make minor corrections without turning your leg too much. I had a mare who really responded well to them. They take a little getting used to because you use them a little differently from regular spurs (and they're easy to catch on things on the ground ) but they can be very effective.
My gelding I ride with a pair of smooth rowels. They're great because he gets huffy with a jab but think the rowel tickles him so he moves away from it well if I just sort of "wiggle" my ankle.
I just changed from blunt short spurs to the smooth rowell HS 1".
He noticeably backed off when I used the blunt ones. With these, he does not back off at all, just does his job.... usually off my calf now!
well to be the debbie downer here - if you need spurs to get your guy/gal going then you need to revisit the driving aid until horse responds as you wish without spurs.
so i wouldn't personally worry about finding the right spur instead i would work on forward from a light aid until you have a horse that responds as you wish.
(i think i own a pair but have no idea where they are ....)
I appreciate this comment. . . . due to the fact that I never wore spurs until a year ago when my instructor wanted me to begin getting used to them, but I've had a really hard time with them. I have two pair: both have about 1 inch posts, the one pair just has rounded knobs, the other, the metal roller balls.
I can't seem to get the hang of them. Without spurs my leg is quiet and I don't seem to have any trouble. When I put them on I think I get worried and I don't seem able to use them at the correct time or something. I took them off a few weeks ago - I'd been using the roller ball spurs . . . seems they were one more thing for me to worry about or something. Do I need them? My horse is fairly good off my leg. I have always just tapped him with my dressage whip if I needed to remind him to pay attention. How do you get used to these things? I think they have made me a little paranoid with my legs or something.
I have two favorite spurs: the Spursuaders and the HS comfort roller spur.
Not everyone knows about the Spursuaders (you can read more about them at http://www.spursuader.com and on my blog). They're wonderful for the sensitive horse who, for whatever reason, requires a very precise but soft aid. Because they're slightly angled inward they're still not FEI legal as far as I know, but their design helps stabilize the leg during their application.
The size and shape makes them ideal for some rider/horse pairs because, as we know, fitting a spur isn't simply fitting a spur to a boot, it's fitting a spur to a rider's leg and a horse's barrel.
The aids are the legs, the hands, the weight of the rider, the whip, the caress, the voice and the use of extraneous circumstances. ~ General Decarpentry www.reflectionsonriding.com