How to Put Spurs on Boots

How to Put Spurs on Boots? People who are fond of horses would never miss a chance to ride a horse in their leisure time. If you are one such enthusiast, you might know that spurs are important while riding a horse.

For newbies, let me elaborate- spur is a device having small spiked wheels that are to be worn by a rider on their boot heels. This device urges your lazy horse to move forward faster or simply to guide the horse in that direction.

How to Put Spurs on Boots

Now you might wonder how this spur will guide the horse to go in the right direction. When worn, the spurs touch the horse's skin, giving them a sense of movement ahead. Thus, wearing spurs on boots is important. Putting spurs on the boots is no rocket science.

All it needs is a little practice and the right skill. Once you know it, the process will done in no time. In this article, I will mainly focus on the method that describes how to put spurs on boots quickly and how you can find the right spur for your boot. To learn more, be with me till the end of this article.

What Are Boot Spurs?

As I already said in the introduction, boot spurs are spiked metal devices that are worn on the boots to aid in better command communication between the rider and the horse.

These spurs go better with cowboy boots and really suit the cowboy attire too. So, if you buy cowboy boots and ride a horse, then make sure you also buy spurs. A little touch of the spurs urges horses to speed up, move to the side, stop or turn. It helps them concentrate on the task and not slow down while doing it.

Many people who aren’t horse riders think using spurs for horses is inhuman. They see it as a harmful tool for horses, but it turns out that if you use it correctly, it will not cause any harm to the horses. Instead, it can be a useful tool.

What is the Purpose of Boot Spurs? 

How to Put Spurs on Boots 1

The purpose of using spurs for boots is simple, i.e., to aid movement commands to the horses; however, some people love to wear spurs on their riding boots to make a fashion statement without having absolutely no practical function.

Spurs are metallic tools that are supposed to wear around the heel of the boot. It consists of 3 significant parts: yoke, neck, and rowel, which are intact by a crescent-shaped strap.

Using Spur straps on boots, riders can command their horses to move, stop, run or rest by making voice gestures. Spurs are not only for the horses but for the trainers as well. If you use spurs incorrectly, there is a high chance that the horse might get hurt or there’s another possibility that the horse takes you as an enemy and makes you fall.

If you accidentally touch the spur to the horse, it might also give him mixed signals and get confused about understanding the gestures. Thus you need to be skilled in where to boot spurs and how to use them to ease communication between the rider and the horse.

Where Do You Put Spurs On Your Boots?  

If you are wondering how to put spur straps on, then this is an important question that needs to be addressed if you are a beginner. There are many places on the boots where you can place the spurs. See in detail; 

  • The best place to wear spurs and straps is right below the knee. Usually, spurs that have huge rowel fit here perfectly and this is the place where you'll get optimum balance as compared to other spots on the boot. Make this the first attempt; if you don't feel comfortable wearing it below the knee, try the next spot.
  • Another best place to wear a spur is right on the heels of your riding boot. Wearing a spur on this spot is highly recommended as it helps better guide the horse's direction and gestures because it puts some pressure on the back of the horse that makes him sense the command better. This spot is quite difficult to familiarize yourself with as you constantly have to pivot your feet to use it properly, but once you are skilled, you will enjoy riding.
  • This is the final spot where you can put spurs on a boot. You can wear the spurs on the side of the boot. This is a perfect spot if you ride a horse that goes off the trail easily. Wearing the spurs on the side of the boot will help keep the horse straight while walking. In this way, you wouldn't have to use your hands much.

How to Put Spurs on Boots - The Basics 

Step 1: Attach Spur Straps

Attaching spur straps is the first thing you have to do. These straps keep the spurs on the boots. Unbuckle the strap and insert one slot on the boot next to the rowel arm. Insert another end of the strap where you want it to be attached. Buckle both ends tightly around the leg. Do this same procedure for the second boot if you wear two spurs. You can buy these spur straps online or in a shop where all cowboy accessories are available, and you will easily find them anywhere in the countryside or even in the cities.

Step 2: Attaching Spurs & Priming Rowels

Once the straps are nicely wrapped around the leg, you must attach the spurs. Open the spur arm, make sure to open sufficient enough to fit your nail inside, then using the pliers, bend the spur arm to fit perfectly with the strap. After that, put some primer and paint over the arms, as it may help to hold the boots better while guiding the horse.

Step 3: Securing The Spurs

Once the priming is done, the next step is to secure it in its place. Use the screw that came in the box with your spurs and screw them into the holes present on the rowel arm. Make sure to tighten the screw, so it does not get loose while riding faster.

Step 4: Cutting Spurs Off At The Correct Length

Always remember this while wearing spurs on the boot, cut them with the correct length; if you leave too much strap hanging in the air, there’s a chance it might get caught in between the spurs themselves and not get you right with ease. In addition, if you don’t cut the spurs at the correct length, then the rowels will touch the ground while riding. Thus, cutting the spurs in the right size is suggested using good scissors or shears. Try to cut it off as close as possible to the rowel.

Step 5: Testing Them Out

The last thing to do is test the spurs before going for an actual ride. Mount on the horse and take a quick round in the fields to know whether the straps are attached perfectly to the spurs or if any adjustment is needed in the fitting. Once everything is adjusted, you should be good to ride!

How To Find The Right Spurs For You? 

These artificial aids are available in sample designs and how do you know which one is the best for you? There are many factors to consider before you settle for anyone spur type. So, take a look at the parameters that are of the greatest importance. 

The Style of Spurs

There are different types of cowboy riding namely Dressage and Western. If you are going to use a spur only as an accessory for your cowboy dress code, then the spur style is really important because here, you only have to impress the crowd with your fashion sense; you don’t have to make any practical use of the spurs. However, if you are going with Western, the spurs used in Western are quite big so that they fit perfectly around a Western Boot. Here the spurs are not only bigger but also longer to allow movement while riding the horse. The end of the rowel in Western spurs is also softer, unlike other spurs on the market. The rowels simply roll around the horse's skin instead of jabbing it.

The Material  

Horse riding in the mud gets messy. If you are arranging to ride your horse outdoors, you will have to find a durable spur set made of reliable and sturdy material. The material should be of such a quality that no matter how frequently use the spurs it should function as new. In addition, make sure the material used in making the spurs is easy to clean so that you don’t look miserable if you ride with your horse outdoors.


The size of the spur matters if you want the communication between you and the horse to be seamless. Imagine if you are riding in Dressage and the spur shank is smaller; the horse wouldn’t be able to feel the spur commands. If the shank size is larger, the spur will glide better on the horse's skin and will help me understand your commands.


Various spur prices depend on the brand you are buying. The price of spurs varies from $10 to $100 depending on the quality of material used in their construction. If you are a newbie, you can start with a cheaper one, and as you advance in your skill, you can go for high-end spurs.


1. Are boot Spurs illegal?

No, Spurs are not illegal. There are some misconceptions about spurs as people think it hurts the horse with their sharp rowels. It is not hurting the horse if you use it correctly. Thus, only professional riders should use spurs who know how to use them correctly.

2. Do Spurs Point up or Down?

When attached to the boots, the spurs point down. This prevents the leg from getting hurt. However, there are some situations where you might want to point the spurs up to add an extra flair to the riding experience. You can attach the spurs so that the rowel faces upward.

3. Do Spurs hurt the horse?

Spurs are used to direct the horse's motion in a straight line. Designed to be used on the horse's side, they guide the horse without causing injury or pain. If the horse gets hurt with the spurs, then it's your fault for not using it correctly. Thus, you should ensure the spurs boots are used only by experienced riders and not beginners.


Spurs are a great tool that helps guide the horses in the most effective way possible without causing pain. As you know, the metallic gears that make up these spurs could be deadly if utilized incorrectly. This article shows you how you can easily wear the spurs on the boots and what are the parameters that often select the best spurs for your cowboy boots.

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