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How to Use Spurs Effectively

Learn how to use spurs properly to refine your leg aids.

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By: Lindsay Grice |

“I don’t use spurs, because I don’t want to make my horse dull!” If you share this opinion, you’re in good company; many of the riders I meet feel the same way. But what if I suggested that the opposite might also be true? As a woodworker might choose smaller chisels to refine the details of his project, so spurs give a rider precision in delivering her cues, sharpening the response. It’s one tool in the tool box of artificial aids, designed to reinforce our natural aids. As a megaphone amplifies the voice, so spurs increase the intensity of the aid. Remember, any tool can be abused in the hands of a novice or careless operator, but once a rider has good control over her lower leg and heel, so as to avoid accidental kicks, spurs can help her to reach just the right spot in just the right amount.…

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