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Flexible stirrup irons?

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  • Flexible stirrup irons?

    When it comes to dressage when you're not experiencing the same kind of impact as if you're jumping, have you found that the brand of flexible stirrup iron matters much? I am an eBay queen and have been looking at all sorts of brands. I'm tempted to get some Herm Sprengers, but I hesitate at the expense. A girlfriend of mine that does both dressage and jumping said she uses HS stirrups for jumping, but that she felt it didn't really matter for dressage. What do you guys think? There are some different irons that look like they could definitely do a sufficient job and they're anywhere from $20-$80 in my watch list.
    When life throws you lemons, put on your best Asian accent and scream "Faaack yuuuu Rehmooohns!" (says yours truly, the half-Japanese kid )

    My Pony Blog Dressage & My Horsey Life
  • Original Poster

    #2
    Like here are some various examples:

    1. http://cgi.ebay.com/Pair-Stainless-S...item588ed8ad5f

    2. http://cgi.ebay.com/FLEX-IBLE-JOINTE...item5633f257c7

    3. http://cgi.ebay.com/NEW-JOINTED-FLEX...item5ae1a06fc6

    4. http://cgi.ebay.com/New-Metlab-Flex-...item1c17cc4257

    5. http://cgi.ebay.com/4-3-4-Flexible-J...item5886b156ed

    6. http://cgi.ebay.com/INTEC-UMS-ULTIMA...item359ee4b6e9

    7. http://cgi.ebay.com/Herm-SPrenger-4-...item231264c294
    When life throws you lemons, put on your best Asian accent and scream "Faaack yuuuu Rehmooohns!" (says yours truly, the half-Japanese kid )

    My Pony Blog Dressage & My Horsey Life

    Comment


    • #3
      Love mine for both! I have a bad knee and it does make a small difference. Not huge.

      The one thing I adore are the MDCs that click at the top to align with your stirrup leathers as they hang straight. This way you get less twisting and the leathers don't have to be trained around your leg. Love those! Best invention ever. Well, actually it would be even better if it had smaller degrees of movement. More like going in 10 degree changes, rather than 45 and 90 degrees only.

      I think as far as flexion goes, it is not something I recommend beginners use right away. I think when you're leg and seat are established, you might want to use them if you have any joint issues. Other than that, I really don't see that they are a GREAT benefit.

      Even jumping, I sometimes think that going back to fixed stirrups is a bit better for getting truly deep through your heel and stretching the calf muscles. I think the flexible ones actually cheat the balance a bit that you get when you drop through your heel.
      "And I'm thinking you weren't burdened with an overabundance of schooling." - Capt Reynolds "Firefly"

      Comment


      • #4
        I LOVE my flexible stirrup irons. I've had all kinds of issues from rotated pelvis to knee joint rubbing. I actually got a $25 'clearance' set online and they are amazing. No brand name but I don't care.

        Comment


        • #5
          MDCs. Best stirrups EVAH!!!

          I bought my first pair by calling the company and getting a set of "imperfects" for something like 40% off. I later "upgraded" to the all black model for shows. Like Velvet, I like the tops that turn to allow the stirrup to hang straight (I had ankle surgery as a kid and it is hard to pick up a lost stirrup on that side by twisting around). I am not sure how much the "flexibility" helps me anymore, since it's been forever since riding in non-flexible stirrups, but having joint issues I suspect the help is real vs. imagined. I have not tried any of the knock-offs precisely because the tops don't turn...
          Last edited by Pony Fixer; Jul. 19, 2011, 01:56 PM. Reason: More detail/information
          From now on, ponyfixer, i'll include foot note references.

          Comment


          • #6
            I have knee problems and I honestly swear by the HS bow balance stirrups - I find them to be in a class of their own, far superior to other flexible models I've tried. They are very pricey, but you can sometimes find used ones on eBay for a slightly more reasonable cost. If I was only going to do dressage in an arena and nothing else, I might consider something cheaper. However, even for a short time out on trails or cross training in fields the bow balance makes a world of difference. I no longer get aching knees every night or numb feet during long rides. Biggest drawback IMO is the sheer hideousness of their appearance, but I used to swap them out for good ol' stainless steel irons for shows only.
            Proud COTH lurker since 2001.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Lost_at_C View Post
              I have knee problems and I honestly swear by the HS bow balance stirrups - I find them to be in a class of their own, far superior to other flexible models I've tried. They are very pricey, but you can sometimes find used ones on eBay for a slightly more reasonable cost. ...
              I have left hip AND knee problems (actually my whole left leg is a mess) and broke my right ankle a year ago. I LOVE my HS Bow Balance, too! Got a good deal on mine (brand new) on eBay.
              "And I will be an embarrassment to all
              Who have not found the peace in being free
              to have a horse as a best friend."

              Comment


              • #8
                I think I may be the buzz kill on these... I have had a broken ankle and probably 6+ serious sprains/pulls. I cannot ride in anything by a plain metal stirrups. I have tried all types of the bendy ones and the pain they cause is terrible. I do have some tendon issues still, but have a quite leg in the plain ones. I the jointed I cannot keep my ankles from bowing and over-extending. I don't know if it's just me or something I can't get used to...Everyone else I know likes them a lot though!

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Pony Fixer View Post
                  MDCs. Best stirrups EVAH!!!

                  I bought my first pair by calling the company and getting a set of "imperfects" for something like 40% off. I later "upgraded" to the all black model for shows. Like Velvet, I like the tops that turn to allow the stirrup to hang straight (I had ankle surgery as a kid and it is hard to pick up a lost stirrup on that side by twisting around). I am not sure how much the "flexibility" helps me anymore, since it's been forever since riding in non-flexible stirrups, but having joint issues I suspect the help is real vs. imagined. I have not tried any of the knock-offs precisely because the tops don't turn...
                  Same here
                  I wasn't always a Smurf
                  Penmerryl Sophie RIDSH
                  "I ain't as good as I once was but I'm as good once as I ever was"
                  The ignore list is my friend. It takes 2 to argue.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by englishcowgirl View Post
                    I think I may be the buzz kill on these... I have had a broken ankle and probably 6+ serious sprains/pulls. I cannot ride in anything by a plain metal stirrups. I have tried all types of the bendy ones and the pain they cause is terrible. I do have some tendon issues still, but have a quite leg in the plain ones. I the jointed I cannot keep my ankles from bowing and over-extending. I don't know if it's just me or something I can't get used to...Everyone else I know likes them a lot though!
                    I'm in the same boat. I have sprained my right ankle 6 times and my left twice..a.nd the jointed stirrups make them ache
                    In my opinion, a horse is the animal to have. 1300 pounds of raw muscle, power, grace, and sweat between your legs - it's something you just can't get from a pet hamster.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I have achy hips and neuromas in my feet. I used jointed stirrups for many years, and they eliminated the numbness in the balls of my feet, but then I borrowed my friend's slose contact saddle and got converted. She had those Royal Rider composite stirrups, with the wide track and the cheese grater bottoms. I tried to buy the knock offs, but found none that came in the 5" width that I am comfortable with. I LOVE them. They are really comfortable on my feet, they don't bang the crap out of your saddle while lungeing, and if you drop your stirrups, they don't bang around, so you don't have to cross them.

                      There was a thread in the eventing forum on them, and quite a few of that crowd uses them on their dressage saddles.

                      As a bonus, lugging your saddle around is so much easier.

                      I found some used for about half price on eBay.
                      2012 goal: learn to ride like a Barn Rat

                      A helmet saved my life.

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