Show season is here for all ages, meaning there’s a lot of big decisions ahead. These choices can be overwhelming as a young rider, so here are some essential things to consider when choosing which spurs you want to compete in.
1: Should You Even Wear Spurs?
First things first, do you really need to wear spurs? Or, do you just want to because everyone else is? As a young rider, it’s easy to fall prey to the pressures of this sport and want to use equipment that more experienced riders use, but sometimes you just aren’t ready, and that’s OKAY. Using spurs before you know how, or are fully comfortable with your natural cues, can be really damaging to the communication between you and your horse. So before competing, just consider what’s best for you at your level.
2: What Spurs Are Best for Your Event?
The perfect spurs for barrel racing may fall short in roping and vice versa, so be aware of your event and how certain types of spurs could further or hinder your success. Additionally, each event has a specific set of regulations, so making sure your rowels aren’t too sharp and your shanks aren’t too long is critical before arriving.
3: Know Your Size
Your spurs won’t be as effective if they don’t fit you, so understanding how the equipment works based on your measurements is incredibly important. For example, the shank piece of a spur has to reach a certain point on a horse for them to recognize the spurring, and this has everything to do with how tall the rider is and where their legs fall while in the saddle. If you are on the shorter side, as most youth riders are, you’ll want longer shanks to ensure that you are spurring the horse where they can better feel and understand it.
4: Understand the Rowels
Oh, the rowels; they can be quite tricky to navigate as a young rider. The overall consensus for young riders is to use softer, more mild rowels until they have a better handle on using them all together. When participating in shows, this is especially true; if a rider is caught misusing equipment, they could be disqualified. It’s also important to make sure your rowels aren’t extra abrasive or sharp, as most shows forbid any use of unnecessarily aggressive equipment. While each event and show always has its specifications, it’s best to play it safe and opt for a duller spur.
Stay tuned as we continue our Show Season Series, we’ll be giving you tips and tricks to succeed in your events all summer long! To see our own show-safe equipment, visit our website! We have tons of stylish spurs that are sure to pass regulation.