Last updated: October 14, 2021

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Thank you for reading! Do you practice equestrian sports? If the answer is yes, then you should have all the necessary equipment at hand to optimise your performance. In this edition we will share with you some useful information about spurs.

Those metal pieces that you need to stimulate your horse when competing.

They are particularly eye-catching, although there are rules for their design and use, in order to avoid abuse of the animals. Therefore, it is suggested that practitioners of these disciplines be aware of their handling. The truth is that nowadays you will find as much variety as you want. Go ahead and get the best ones.

Do you want to buy spurs online? You have come to the right place. At we take care to provide you with quality content, selected under high standards of professionalism, about those topics that cause you concern. Read on below and learn how to get the right ones.


  • Spurs are objects made of metal or plastic, whose arched shape ending in a circular toothed piece, are fitted to the boots of the wearer in order to motivate the horse during sporting competitions or exhibitions.
  • Identify which type you like best: English, cowboy or Chilean. Each has a particular origin known to bring life to its design. Learn what to look out for and pick up a pair or pairs for experienced riders.
  • Here are the factors you should consider before purchasing your spurs: uses, material, fitting system and arch. Fortunately, we have selected the best content to help you understand each of them. Find it in the last part of this text.

The best Spurs: Our Picks

Buying Guide

Want to buy spurs online? Perhaps you have considerable concerns about how to go about it. Don't worry, we have created a guide to this product used for sporting activities and national exhibitions. Get all the information you need below.

Use the spurs while riding. (Photo: Skeeze/

What is a spur and what are its advantages?

It is a rotating spike-shaped item, made of steel or plastic, which is placed on the heel of the boots worn by the rider. Its purpose is to hit or jab the horse, in order to direct its movements.

To reduce damage to the animal's skin, they must comply with certain rules and forms of use.
In addition to its practical applications, this accessory is related to a cowboy's clothing.

Why is this? Well, because of western films, which are linked to the adventures of the so-called American Wild West. It is therefore an indispensable element in any outfit that embodies this theme.

The market offers different alternatives. Although they have evolved in terms of materials and design, in general they have the same purpose. Buy ones with added value, that adapt to the desired use and last over time. More importantly, you should be proud to wear them on your boots.

  • They help to steer the animal
  • They are made of resistant materials
  • Elegant designs
  • They facilitate the rider's work
  • They are decorative elements
  • They hurt the equine's skin
  • Some are only decorative
  • Rejected by protectionist organisations
  • Low quality models
  • They leave scars for life

English, cowboy or Chilean spurs - What should you pay attention to?

They are essential in any equestrian discipline. However, you should be aware that there are variables adapted to the needs of buyers, in terms of format. If you will use them as a decorative accessory, you may just choose the one you like best.

English. They have a simple shape, with a length of between 2 and 3 cm. They usually use a straight, rounded tip, with smooth edges. Their conservative design and short neck is due to the short distance between the legs and the shorter saddle with respect to the horse.

In sports such as classical dressage they are used with delicacy because their aim is not to accelerate the equine, but to give precise commands to perform simple lateral movements or more complex pirouettes.

Cowgirls. They are known as westerns, and are the most famous style thanks to the film genre of the same man. They are a part of cowboy culture. They are characterised by their spinning wheels with spikes and customised designs according to the rider's tastes.

Their weight is considerable, regardless of size, so they have a strong impact on the skin. The neck of their spurs is longer, as western saddles use stirrups further away from the horse.

Chilenas. They are notable for the large size of the spurs on their slices. They range between 11 and 12 cm although some models can reach 17 cm. They are also known as "nazarenas", as their shape is reminiscent of the thorns of Christ's crown.

In fact, this type of spur generally has a great deal of craftsmanship with inlaid precious metals and Christian motifs, as it was the Jesuits who introduced this art to the region during the 18th century.

English Cowgirl Chilean
Use Training Leading Leading
Impact Moderate High High
Design Straight and rounded Spiked swivel Spiked swivel
Location Heel, Heel Heel
Neck Short Long Long

Purchasing criteria: factors that allow you to buy and qualify the different models of spurs

In order for you to choose the best ones, we will share with you four essential factors that you must take into account before making your final selection. Remember that this accessory must fit your requirements and the environment where you will use it. Pay attention to each one of them and make a good investment

  • Uses
  • Material
  • Fitting system
  • Arc


You will need pieces according to the activities you carry out on the horse. This is because the format changes depending on the environment and the orders you want to transmit to the horse. Analyse their characteristics carefully and choose the right model. This way you will get the best performance.

Exhibition. Are you a fan of riding competitions such as dressage or show jumping? Opt for slim, close-contact models, such as English spurs with straight or rounded shapes.

They are used for the purpose of communicating precise instructions and do not hurt the horse's skin as much.

Competition.Do you like the style and activities of cowboys? This presentation of spurs is ideal for you, because they fit the size of the boots and allow a better contact, even though the stirrups are further away from the horse. Its purpose is to indicate, by means of a slight pinch, that you should increase your speed.


You will find specimens made of different materials on the market. To choose one over the other, take into account your budget and how often you will use them. Depending on the construction components, the cost and life span of the product will vary.

Steel. A classic element used to create spurs, thanks to its strength and durability, do you need one for everyday use or sports practice? Purchase presentations of this metal, as they will last over time and will not deteriorate easily. It is worth mentioning that they also look good on footwear.

Plastic. A low price point. Want to dress up as a cowboy for a Wild West themed event or a children's party? Your outfit will be complete with a pair of plastic spurs. Their purpose is decorative, and they will make your boots look like those of your favourite western rider.

Fitting system

The spurs are not naturally integrated into the boots. For this, they need straps with which they can be fastened to the shoe. On the internet you will find them made for different purposes. Choose the right one for the activity you are doing, if you can afford it.

Single straps. They are inexpensive and are recommended for occasional practices of low competitive level. They stand out for their resistance to weather conditions. They also require little maintenance and you can store them in your equipment box without worrying about them deteriorating easily.

Professional leashes. Do you compete in high-level riding competitions? Opt for leather straps. They are classic in style, perfect for matching the colour of your boots. Once you buy them, consider that they may crack if not properly maintained.

Have you got your competition spurs yet? (Photo: clarencealford /


Also known as the body, this is the part that surrounds and clamps the heel. Its shape will vary depending on the saddle used by the rider. That said, it is important to carefully analyse the characteristics of your saddle in order to select the type of arch that best suits your needs.

Curved. Do you have a Texan saddle? This is the recommended design for your boots. This is because this saddle pushes your legs forward and out, away from the horse's sides.

This is why you need the arch of your spurs to have a certain degree of curvature, so that you can jab the equine without too much effort.

Straight. The right choice for the English saddles used in equestrian shows. Why? The legs remain practically straight at the horse's sides. Therefore, there is no need for a bend to press the spurs against the horse. A slight movement of the legs is sufficient.

(Featured image photo: Briscoewesternartmuseu/