SMBs vs polos for leg protection... - The Horse Forum
  • 1 Post By SorrelHorse
  • 1 Post By Kayty
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post #1 of 3 Old 08-13-2012, 02:42 AM Thread Starter
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SMBs vs polos for leg protection...

So, as a lot of you are probably aware, my old lady mare is heading down the downhill road towards blindness due to ERU.

That has led me to get her some leg protection because, at this point in her sight loss, she has a hard time judging distances, trips rather often, etc, (mostly blind in one eye with a bit more vision in the other eye) and therefore she's pretty at risk for doing some damage to herself before she even knew what happened.
I watch out for her and alert her when I see something that could pose a danger (we have words describing pretty much every scenario we might come across) but there are times when unassuming things pose more of a threat than I realize+she has to scramble a bit to get herself in order.

I'm still riding her quite often (we average about 20 miles on the trail/week) so, while she wears bell boots on all 4 when she's on her own time in the pasture, she needs more for the trail since that's a bit more high risk than just her pasture.

I have been just sticking SMBs on all her legs for our rides but I am a little concerned about how warm they allow her legs to get - her legs will be sweating profusely under them in just 15-20 minutes (even before any saddle sweat shows up!) and we usually are riding for upwards of 45 minutes.

So, I'm wondering if polos would offer a similar level of protection that I'm getting with the SMBs (I assume polos would keep her legs cooler...)....?
I don't really use the SMBs for support purposes, just for all around leg protection (if I wasn't needing to protect her entire leg, I'd just use splint boots or something similar).

Fabio - 13 year old Arabian/Lipizzan gelding

Rest peacefully, Lacey.
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post #2 of 3 Old 08-13-2012, 02:53 AM
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Location: Ashland, OR
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I wouldn't use polos. Polos keep the legs just as hot, don't have a lot of impact absorption, and are extremely time consuming and easy to mess up --- And this is coming from me, who's been a polo nazi and supporter on the forum for ages. Plus, if you're on the trails, SMBs and Polos are gonna get stuff (Foxtails, burrs, prickly plants, leaves, stuff like that) stuck on them

Here's what I would do. I would get some ProTech Splints/Skids, for front and hind.

They have the hard plastic on the side and back, and are super fast, easy, and they wont make her as hot as the SMBs (Most everything is going to have her sweating at least a little, but these are better)

Also, what bell boots are you using? I really dislike rubber bells....I mean, rubber would be good for hte pasture, but for rides I like something harder. I use Classic Equine No-Turn DLs. Best things ever.


Classic Equine Pro-Tech Boots - The Tack Stop

DL Bells:

No Turn DL Bell Boot - The Tack Stop

And, because she's cute, here's a picture of Selena wearing her ProTechs and DL's. :)

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Pssh.I didn't pick up the wrong lead
It's called a counter canter...
...A very advanced maneuver.

Last edited by SorrelHorse; 08-13-2012 at 02:56 AM.
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post #3 of 3 Old 08-15-2012, 01:28 AM
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Australia
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Definitely go for something with a hard casing. Even open front jump boots with fetlock boots behind will be better than SMBs or polos in this case.
Try to find a boot with a fleece lining rather than that god awful neoprene rubbish, fleece will help to maintain airflow and absorption where as neoprene tends to trap heat and sweat. Put on a wetsuit then go for a run on a warm day if you don't believe me :P
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