5 Best Spurs for Beginners – Control Without Hurt

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Last updatedLast updated: March 03, 2021
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Are you looking for the best spurs for beginners? Then you have come to the right place. Spurs are an excellent tool that helps to direct your horse with minimal fuss. These tools have been used for centuries by horsemen down the ages and come in various forms. Since there are so many of them on the market, it can be a challenge choosing the right one. Choosing the right spurs is important because the wrong spurs can irritate or injure your horse. In this post, we will consider some of the best models for horses available right now.

In creating our list, we took several factors into consideration. Some of these factors include material, band, rowel, shank, and sizes. We will consider why these features are important and how to choose the best fit in the buying guide. We will also highlight the anatomy of horse spurs and the effect and importance of each part.

Top 5 Spurs for Beginners Review 2021

  • Shank: 1 inch
  • Band: 3/8 inch wide
  • Rowel: ball
  • Material: stainless steel
  • Size: ladies only
  • Pair: yes

If you have a sensitive horse, then this model is just the right option for you. It is a humane spur that doesn’t cause discomfort to your horse. These spurs are designed for English riding, and as the name implies, come with soft roller spurs.
They are great if your horse has once suffered abuse due to poor horsemanship. The design is unique and will suit most sensitive horses. There is a revolving stainless steel sphere that has a super smooth surface. There are several advantages to this design. First, there is no rattling pinching.
Additionally, the roller ball can be rolled on the horse without discomfort. Made from high grade stainless steel, this ball is durable and will be comfortable for the horse.
Sold as a pair, these spurs are very economical and offer excellent value for money. If you are a skilled rider with still legs, you will likely find this an excellent means of communicating with your equine companion.

What we liked:

  • Gentle on horses
  • Rounded design reduces chances of irritation to your horse.
  • Clear, subtle signal to the horse
  • Compatible with ladies’ and men boots

What could be better:

  • Can be hard choosing the right and left spur
  • Shank: 1.75 inch
  • Band: 0.5 inch wide
  • Rowel: 10-point
  • Material: chrome plated
  • Size: ladies only
  • Pair: yes

Up next is this model from Weaver. If you are looking for a classic spur that looks great and fashionable but is still highly practical and functional, then you’d love this model. It comes with a nice design and offers a gentle means of communication with your horse.

It comes as a pair and features two-toned accent to contribute to a thoroughly elegant appearance. This is an elegant and highly functional spur that is great for barrel racing or roping. It is excellent for horses that require mild direction. It offers the best value on our list.

The chrome plated spurs have a 10 edged rowel and slanted swivel buttons for control. Length-wise, you get a shank that is just 1 ¾” and 0.5” band. These specifications result in a spur good for all types of riders, whether beginners or experts.

In terms of cost, this is one of the most affordable options that still offer excellent performance. It looks more expensive than its price. If you have a stubborn horse, we recommend getting these elegant, effective and humane spurs.

What we liked:

  • Elegant design
  • Affordable
  • Excellent for stubborn horses
  • Great for barrel racing

What could be better:

  • Not ideal for sensitive horses

Tough-1 BS Jingle Bob SpursBudget Pick

  • Shank: 2 inch
  • Band: 0.5 inch wide
  • Rowel: 16-point
  • Material: black steel band with chrome
  • Size: unisex
  • Pair: yes

The Tough-1 BS Jingle Bob Spurs is an excellent spur selection for anyone that wants a highly effective spur at a low price. It comes with plenty of functionality and is very efficient. At first glance, it is pretty clear that these are budget spurs. It has a dull appearance that doesn’t look expensive at all. However, if you aren’t big on aesthetics, you wouldn’t mind wearing these spurs.
With its dull finish, the 18 point rowel on these spurs are rated mild; thus, they are great for different types of horses and are excellent for beginners.
With its 2” shank and 16 point rowel, this unisex spurs will make a statement wherever you wear them to.
The steel band with chrome helps the spurs to hang correctly on your boots. When wearing them, you wouldn’t suffer from any discomfort since they do not tend to ride up your ankles.
Overall, most users rate these budget spurs highly and feel that they are decent, considering the budget price. They are made to last and are very durable.

What we liked:

  • High quality 16 point rowel
  • Hangs correctly on your boot
  • Affordable

What could be better:

  • Dull appearance
  • Cheap appearance
  • Shank:
  • Band: 0.75 inch wide
  • Rowel:
  • Material: stainless steel
  • Size: men, youth
  • Pair: yes

This is a straightforward bumper model that gives the rider plenty of control as they move with their horse. With the design, riders do not need to move their foot before the spurs act to direct the horse. While the design is somewhat basic, these are highly efficient models that are humane to boot.
An interesting feature of this model is the lack of rowel and shank.
Despite lacking the shank and rowel, the impressive construction of these spurs make them very effective at controlling the horse. They also look good on boots. Hence, if you have a horse that is sensitive or stubborn, these are just the spurs to help.
The bumper makes them easy to wear, and the stainless steel design adds some lustre to the overall design. The buttons are mainly responsible for controlling the horse’s movement. It comes in different sizes and is excellent for all beginners.
Due to their unique design, these spurs are slightly more expensive than your average spurs. However, the cost is worth it as they are effective and humane.

What we liked:

  • Excellent for sensitive horses
  • No need to turn ankles for direction
  • Comfortable for horses
  • Easy to walk in

What could be better:

  • Somewhat small
  • Expensive

Weaver AT Jingle Bob SpurBest Design

  • Shank: 2.25 inch
  • Band: 1.5 inch wide
  • Rowel: 16-point
  • Material: steel, German silver trim
  • Size: men’s only
  • Pair: yes

Last but not least are these spurs from Weaver. They are bob spurs that come with a heavy and sturdy build. They are very effective in controlling horses while still comfortable for walking. As you walk in these spurs, you will emanate the classic Western jingle due to the design of these spurs.
They are made from high quality stainless steel and certainly make a statement wherever they appear. Despite all these advantages, they are quite affordable.
The bobs lie on the 0.5” band and have a 16 point rowel design. They are excellent for smaller heels and will definitely catch the attention of people.
The overall build is of high quality which ensures that these spurs are useful for a long time. If you find the jingle annoying, the good thing is that you can remove them.

What we liked:

  • Durable
  • Removable jingle bobs
  • Nice design

What could be better:

  • Lacks straps

Things to Consider

In the roundup above, we reviewed five of the best spurs for starters. Before making a buying choice, you might want to consider other options. What factors or features should you look out for? What information is important to guide you in choosing the correct option? The answers to these questions are contained in this buying guide.

Choosing the best spurs for beginners

5 Best Spurs for Beginners - Control Without Hurt
Not everyone likes spurs. Many view them as torture instruments on horses. However, you can find spurs that are humane. They do not dig into the horse but simply give a little nudge to control the horse. If you want a bit more response from your horse, then you should look into the best spurs for beginners. There are several, like those we have reviewed so far, that fit properly and will not damage your horse but give him a wakeup call. For example, the Coronet Soft Touch Roller Ball Humane Spurs.

What are spurs and why are they used?

Spurs are often made of metal. They are often attached to the heel of riding boots to direct the horse. These tools are not used all the time but only when needed to back up the rider. They are used with the seat, voice, hands, legs, to control the horse. With these tools, they give the horse signals that are almost invisible to an observer. Spurs are used not only for riding but also for dressage. In this instance, they do not make the horse faster but give subtle directions on movement. Spurs also feature in show classes.

Parts of a Spur

There are three different parts of a spur. These include the Yoke, Shank, and Rowel.
The Yoke is the part of the spur that wraps around the heel of a boot.
The shank is an extension from the back of the yoke. It is the main part that touches the horse’s body.
The rowel is optional. It is sometimes set with the shank and comes in a wheel or disc shape.
Spurs come with straps, although some models lack a strap. These straps, usually called a spur strap help to wear the spur tightly. There are tight spurs that stay on without any strap.
Spurs are worn in different ways, but most people wear it with the shank pointing downwards. This makes it easy to send subtle signals to the horse.

How to use Spurs

Before applying spurs to any horse, it is vital that the horse rider seats properly on the horse.

If the rider doesn’t sit correctly, the spurs can jar the horse and result in adverse consequences. An unstable leg would leave the horse annoyed or irritated. It can even be dangerous when used wrongly. If wrongly worn, it can injure the horse
Thus, sit properly and push the rowel against the horse’s side.

Types of Spurs

There are different types of spurs available on the market right now. They are separated into different categories based on different factors. One factor is the size of the shank, while another is the shape of the spurs.


There are nine main types of spurs based on the shape. These include Round End spurs, Prince of Wales spurs, Rowelled spurs, and Knob End spurs among others.

The Round End spurs comes with a small ball at the end of the spur shank.
A Knob End spur has a shank with square shape. It doesn’t dig into the horse but has blunt edges.
Prince of Wales spurs are some of the most popular options on the market right now. They come with a sharp and flat end.
Rowelled spurs come with a shank with spinning wheel. The lower the number of teeth on the wheel, the sharper it is. This type of spurs is sub-divided into disc and roller variations. The disc variation lacks teeth and is commonly used in dressage. Roller, on the other hand, comes with a plastic roller at the end of the shank. It is excellent for sensitive horses.
Swan Neck spurs have a shank that inclines upwards before it levels off.
Water Ford spurs come with a large round ball that is good for sensitive horses.
Le Spur has tiny teeth in the heel band. With this type of spur, the rider does not need to turn the heel.


Spurs are also differentiated based on their size. There are spurs for all sizes and can fit different boots. A long shank ranges from 2 – 3 inches while the smaller shank is around ¼”.

Purpose of the Spurs

When choosing spurs, you have to decide what you want to use the spurs for. In this section, we will consider some of the disciplines that affect your choice.


When choosing the spur for dressage, you would likely opt for spurs with a short shank length. Why? Because they offer the rider close leg contact. Dressage riders often use a spur with round edges or options with no teeth like the Disc spurs.
British dressage allows riders to wear spurs at every stage and are compulsory for Advanced riders. As long as the shank can move, there isn’t a limit on what can be worn. However, dressage allows riders to wear blunt spurs in Young Horse classes.

Show Horses

Impulsion is vital in shows, and that is why many prefer a flatter spur to encourage movement. A preferred style here is the Prince of Wales spur.


For this style, it is preferred to have rowels that rotate and have decorations. It comes with a longer and wider shank because of the rider’s sitting position. The main reason for this is that the saddle and stirrup let the rider sit further from the sides of the horse.

Features to consider when choosing spurs for beginners

5 Best Spurs for Beginners - Control Without Hurt


The material of construction has an effect on how effective the spurs would be. Choose a material that is sturdy and would last long. That way, you wouldn’t have to change spurs ever so often. The Tough-1 BS Jingle Bob Spurs is a durable option made from steel.


The shank is an essential part of the spurs, and you must determine the shank length to use. To determine the correct length of shank, sit in the saddle and see how far your heel is from the horse’s side. If you ride with longer stirrups, the shank length is usually longer.


The rowel you choose is dependent on the discipline and your horse’s sensitivity. We have considered the different types of spurs and the rowels that they have. If the situation is one that you need a fast response, then rowels with fewer teeth are a good option. They are also good if you have a willful horse.
A gentler rowel has more teeth designed closely. Some options lack a rowel, and example is the AJ Tack Wholesale Humane Sidewinder Horse Barrel Racing Bumper Spurs.


Choosing the right size of spurs involves, among other things, determining the purpose of the spurs. Check out the shank length by sitting on the horse and measuring the distance between the horse’s barrel and your legs.

When used correctly, humane spurs are safe for horses.

The original source is unknown, but spurs have been used since ancient times by armies.

Our Verdict

Choosing the best spurs for beginners can be hard, but the five picks above are the best options. The Coronet Soft Touch Roller Ball Humane Spurs comes as a subtle, painless spur for your sensitive horse. It is a humane spur that will give you the results you desire in controlling your horse. The Weaver Leather Women’s Roping Spur with Plain Band is an elegant and highly functional spur that is great for barrel racing or roping. It is excellent for horses that require mild direction. Lastly, Tough-1 BS Jingle Bob Spurs comes with a sharp design and hangs correctly on the boot to avoid irritating your horse. It also comes with a 16 point rowel design. We hope this review helps you in choosing the best spurs for beginners.

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