Using Spurs - Page 2

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Using Spurs

This is a discussion on Using Spurs within the Horse Riding forums, part of the Riding Horses category

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    06-14-2012, 03:19 PM
Originally Posted by Kayty    
Don't blame the tools, blame the operator ;)

I ride nearly always in spurs, and never apply them unless I have to. I've given a couple of horses a few good thumps with the leg when they have barged into it - and have never caused spur wounds.
This is why you don't wear spurs unless you have a perfectly quiet, controlled lower leg in all paces, and if the horse is giving you some trouble. Until the leg can be 100% controlled, don't add a spur to it.
When the leg CAN be controlled, adding a spur is a brilliant way to improve the sensitivity to an aid - particularly in the lateral and collected work.

However, I don't understand why your instructor says that spurs will replace the use of the bit?
The spur is a driving (forward) aid, while the bit is a restraining aid. If you are over using the bit, you shouldn't be adding spurs, but working on your seat so that you do not rely on the reins.
He says it should not replace the bit, but make you use the bit a lot less. We should be doing a lot of steering with our legs and just directing the horse with the reins. I don't think I over use the bit, I'm actually pretty soft handed if I do say so myself ;), he just wants us to use the spurs so we know how to, plus they help sharpen aids for more difficult maneuvers like reiner spins and stuff like that.
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    06-15-2012, 09:08 AM
I'd rather have them and not need them, then need them and not have them.

My little black gelding has never needed them. He's soft and responsive, listens well to voice commands as well as light leg cues. I still wear spurs when I ride him, but (again) only as a "just in case."

I've known other horses that are fine 99% of the time without spurs - but it's good to have them during that 1%.

There are people who over-use spurs, just as there are people who over-use crops/bats and bits.

opinions, reining, spurs

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