Good spurs for dressage?
After several months of gaining my leg, balance and seat back, I've finally allowed myself to start wearing a pair of spurs with my gelding for refining cues (with a trainer!). I hunted around google images and found a picture that most closely resembles my pair; see below.
My goal in using a pair of spurs is to have a pair that provides more localized/specific contact, but isn't so much that my horse will become dull without spurs (especially considering the fact that I am new to dressage & spur use). My question is: is there a better pair I could be using? My trainer has a neat pair of short-neck rollers that seem gentle but effective. What spurs do you use for dressage? Do you have a recommended pair?
I know that the Dressage people here will tell you what is legal in the show ring, but I'd like to put in my 2 cents worth re: spurs.
First, spurs are a great training tool.
Second, you should use the mildest spur to get the job done. I have US Cavalry brass spurs with sharp rowels, a more mild set of stainless steel roweled spurs, a set of 1/2 long Prince of Wales Spurs and a set of blunt 3/8" long SS spurs.
My favorite spurs are the Prince of Wales. My horses can feel them with just a turn of my heel, and I use them to train better attention to my leg. Calve cue first, then, if unresponsive, spur next. If unresponsive to the spur I dismount and do some ground training.
You want your horse to understand that a spur is coming, so he needs to listen to your leg.
I wore the Cav. spurs pretty much for show bc after training my horses to the hobby they knew their job and it took only a forward, looser rein and my calves to gallop off from a halt.
If your leg is longer than your horse's belly, you want to point the spur upwards. (Mostly long legged men.)
If your leg is "Swallowed Up" by horse (mostly big horses and smaller women), you will want the spur to point downwards.
Always adjust your spur to be around your ankle bone. English field boots and other English boots have a "spur rest" on the boot and that should guide you to the correct position.
Hope this helps. =D
Ah! After looking it up, it seems I'm already using a prince of wales spur. :) Mine do curve downwards, as I am 5'1" with an embarrassingly short inseam. Thanks for the input!
Almost forgot. Adjust your spur strap to buckle with the leftover strap outwards. Out to the right for your right boot, and buckle out to the left for your left boot. After awhile you'll be able to tell which is which by the direction of the buckle. Also, I hook one spur to the other by buckling one spur to the other, and hang them that way. I can always find them and I find a pair, not just one.
I must be tired. ONE more thing about your spurs, the metal is plliable. You can pull them outwards, bending the metal, if they pinch, and push the metal in if they are too loose.
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