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Spur Stop/ Spur breaking

This is a discussion on Spur Stop/ Spur breaking within the Horse Training forums, part of the Training Horses category
  • Spurs for breaking horses
  • Why use swan spurs

 
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    01-26-2008, 02:08 PM
  #31
Foal
Didnt take time to read every post, but from what I have read, Lane and Tim are the only pro-spurstop people. I too spur stop. For those who say that it confuses the horse, then that horse hasnt been properly trained. Horses may have instincts, but everything can be trained into a habbit for a horse (good or bad.) As far as spurstopping, if you show pleasure, theres no other option.
     
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    01-26-2008, 02:32 PM
  #32
tim
Weanling
Nice!

I've read some serious arguments on other forums that got really nasty. I think it's become less of an issue though, since it's been around for a few years now.
     
    02-04-2008, 12:51 AM
  #33
Weanling
I tend to agree with that, it seems hard to have a conversation these days about a contraversial subject without it turning into an arguement. I am glade that the people on this forum in general have enough respect for one another to be polite and discuss things like adults.

Oh, WELCOME derbyhillsranch......
     
    02-04-2008, 01:15 AM
  #34
Yearling
I'm not against spur stopping or for it or anything like that. I just want to say to anyone that says a horse doesn't know any different is wrong, IMO.

From what I know and believe to be true, horses are born with a natural drive line and have it the rest of their lives. If you went up to a wild horse, given you could get close enough, and smacked it in the rump or anywhere behind their withers it will run forward, if you hit it on the chest, it will step backwards, even just slightly before running off. It is in their nature. Like if someone pokes you in the chest you step back, or some one kicks you in the butt you step forward, its a natural thing.

I'm not saying training a horse to spur stop is any more difficult than to train a horse to stop with the rein because horses are trained to do all sorts of things out of their nature.
     
    02-04-2008, 01:58 AM
  #35
Foal
Quote:
Originally Posted by Abby
I'm not against spur stopping or for it or anything like that. I just want to say to anyone that says a horse doesn't know any different is wrong, IMO.

From what I know and believe to be true, horses are born with a natural drive line and have it the rest of their lives. If you went up to a wild horse, given you could get close enough, and smacked it in the rump or anywhere behind their withers it will run forward, if you hit it on the chest, it will step backwards, even just slightly before running off. It is in their nature. Like if someone pokes you in the chest you step back, or some one kicks you in the butt you step forward, its a natural thing.

I'm not saying training a horse to spur stop is any more difficult than to train a horse to stop with the rein because horses are trained to do all sorts of things out of their nature.
Horses may always have instincts, but you are always to teach them a habbit.
     
    02-04-2008, 02:01 AM
  #36
Yearling
Quote:
Originally Posted by derbyhillsranch
Horses may always have instincts, but you are always to teach them a habbit.
That is very true. Just because it is in a horses nature to see grass and graze doesn't mean it is okay while riding, thus why we teach them to keep their head up or bring their head up on command. It is also their instincts to run away but we teach them it is okay to let a predator on their back. (The predator being us of course. )
     
    02-04-2008, 04:51 AM
  #37
Foal
This is basically what I think about spurs: I quoted it from another horse forum, and I think this was a great post:

Quote:
Before I begin to bore the heck out of you with my rant o' th' spurs. Let me say a few things first before you can start to lose attention.

Spurs are not supposed to make your horse go faster!
No, I'm not perfect either.
Spurs are NOT supposed to make your horse go faster.
Yes, I ride with spurs on most horses.
Spurs are NOT supposed to make your horse go faster.
Yes, I'm aggainst use of artificial aids.
Spurs are NOT supposed to make your horse go faster.
No, spurs are not evil IF used correctly.
Spurs are STILL NOT supposed to make your horse go faster.

Now that that's cleared up. Let the talk begin *puts out cookies and milk to keep audience from wandering off*

It's a common misconception that spurs should be used on slow and lazy horses that are not responsive to the leg.
This is entirely wrong. You can forget all about that because a spur will not improve a lazy horse. It'll only make it worse. Yes, worse.
If you were to get poked in the shoulder for an hour a day each day by a pointy object. Eventually you wold lose sensation there due to the constant nagging. Instead of kicking your horse forward with a pointy object attached to your heel, try riding transitions to get him to be more responsive to your leg. This should not be done with a spur.

So what are spurs made for then?

Lateral movements.(big fancypants word squish taught me. To the common folk often reffered to as; "the sideway thingy")

A spur is supposed to give the horse the more accurate and subtle leg aids that are needed to perform good lateral movements and the mroe advanced tricks like tempi-changes and pirouettes. Because some leg aids used in the more advanced dressage exercises (but also western) are very simular to the leg aids a horse recieves in the easier exercises.

I like to use a travers (lateral movement in which every leg of the horse is on a differen't trail, the ultimate bend of a horse) and a simple canter as an example.
The leg aids for both movements are almsot identical and can be confusing for the horse. Also a travers demands a lot of muscle power from the legs of the rider and a lot of impuls from the horse. To do this without having to kick your horse visibly, we like to use a spur. The leg aid is then: short, subtle and clear, and when done correctly doesn't show at all to the people watching.

A spur is used to convey subtler aids to the horse and thereby creating a more quiet leg for the rider. No one likes to see lots of movement in a rider. In every branch of the sport it's preffered if the aid given to the horse is minimal and hardly noticable. That's the art of horseback riding, to have your horse so well trained and listening so well to your aids that a slight twitch of a muscle is enough to let it do what you want. If not for the spur, this wouldn't be possible.

Your horse' speed and the activity and beat of his gait should not (NEVER EVER) be affected by the use of your spurs. When riding the correct use of aids is as follows.
Seat -> leg -> spur
NOT seat -> spur -> leg.

The spur should not touch your horse unless you itnend to use it, if out's pricking your horse everytime you put your leg against it's belly, it's not right. Your leg position is worng and/or your spur is positioned too high up your calf. When your toes are pointing in and your heel is down the inside of your calf should be in contact with your horse. Considering the spur is on the back of it, it shouldn't touch the horse until you want it to.
This is the reason why you should not use 'swan-neck spurs' as they curve in such a way that they touch your horse before your leg does. Which is wrong.

You with me so far? Good! Now we're going to get cracking on some logics rather than facts. You'll actually have to do some thinking now.
For those of you who rather not think and just take facts from me without knowing why that's the case. Here's the dumbed down version.

Pay close attention now...

EVIL!


GOOD!

Now for everyone interested in the theory behind this...
Time for physics lessons!

Let's go to the beach. Wear your stilleto heels please ^^
You're sinking down a lot in the sand aren't you? Yes!
That's because you're exerting a certain amount of pressure all onto one very small area. (the stilleto heel)
Now take of your stilleto heels please and put on your snowboots.
Not sinking so deep now?
That's because you're exerting the same amount of pressure but now have it spread out over a larger area ( the whole sole)

Now take this idea and project it onto spurs. If you get a small rounded spur. How big is the area you use the pressure on?
And with a bigger spurs?

A wheeled spur is also not necessarily evil. The times in which spurs actually had nasty spikes are long over. In most shows they're not allowed. The wheels are either smooth (no serrations) or flattened (serrations but minimal and not pointy) making them about as blunt as a spoon. Thick or fine serrations make a difference but it's all dependant on the surface area that will be touching your horse (the more the kinder)
The thicker the wheel of the spur is (is it as thick as a pizza knife? Or as thick as three silver dollars pushed together?) the gentler the spur is on your horse' belly.

In fact I can say in all honesty that a wheel is much kinder for your horse.
It rolls off of the horse' belly on impact (if the wheel is well oiled) reducing the force a lot and turning that energy into the movement of the wheel. (physics again)
If you do the same with a normal rounded spur there's nothing to absorb the impact and you will just give your horse a bruise.

Just for fun's sake, you should go down to your nearest tack store and ask to see the spurs, all the spurs. Just take each and every spurs and use it on your own leg (shin, calf, wherever) and feel the different between the differnet sizes, between wheels and no-wheels etc. You'd be amazed that al lyou always thought to be true isn't exactly true.
(same goes for bits by the way, just place the bit over your calf and make a few halts with it and fele the differences betwene different bits sometime. You'll find that that nice thin snaffle isn't so nice after all)

Also: SPURS ARE NOT SUPPOSED TO MAKE YOUR HORSE GO FASTER!!

Thank you for taking interest in this subject and I hope it's been education and informational. May you go forth and spread the word of the justice of the spurs!
from here: http://z10.invisionfree.com/horselan...howtopic=22104

Sorry the pictures don't work.
     
    02-04-2008, 10:38 AM
  #38
tim
Weanling
Good article Grendel.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Abby
if you went up to a wild horse, hit it on the chest, it will step backwards.
Or rear up and kick you in the face.

Good point though. Well said.
     
    02-04-2008, 11:59 AM
  #39
Trained
There's a woman where I board, and I believe she shows WP. I asked her one day how she got her horse to have a certain head carriage and along with other stuff, she said her horse was spur broke. Is that the same as spur stopping, or something totally different?
     
    02-04-2008, 05:53 PM
  #40
Weanling
Quote:
Originally Posted by appylover31803
There's a woman where I board, and I believe she shows WP. I asked her one day how she got her horse to have a certain head carriage and along with other stuff, she said her horse was spur broke. Is that the same as spur stopping, or something totally different?
you would have to ask her - I have horses that are spur broke that do not spur stop and some that do. It depends on who did the training/breaking...........
     

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