Polo Wraps vs Splint Boots
What is better polo wraps or splint boots?
Polo’s can offer a little more support than splint boots when properly applied. However, in uneducated hands, polo’s can be very dangerous. If wrapped too tight or in the wrong direction, they can damage or bow tendons. If wrapped too loose you run the risk of coming undone while riding, or bunching up too low or high. I like polo wraps because I feel like you can get support where you need it. I have also noticed when using polo’s that I wont have any dirt and sand inside of the wrap.
Although both offer protection from interference and debris, splint boots are easier to apply. Splint boots tend to be stiffer than polo’s and wont fit every horse as they usually come in small, medium, or large sizes. A cheap brand of splint boots isn’t worth the money to me and without legs, I have no barrel horse. It’s important to protect your investment. Splint boots are also quicker to take on and off, normally easier to clean, and run less risk of misapplication.
I like to run Classic Equine Support Boots on the front, and Polo Wraps on the hind. I like that I can wrap the polo wraps higher all the way up to the hock on the hind legs and double wrap them on the bottom of the fetlock. If I have a horse that stops and turns hard and starts backing off, I wrap their hind legs because when they really get in the ground hard it can burn them without any protection. To properly apply a polo wrap, always remember “tendons in,” which mean always wrap around the back of the tendon towards the inside of the leg.
I personally don’t tape the polo wraps but many people do. Knock on wood! I’ve never had one come unraveled and used them daily not only in Barrel Racing but when I worked on Race Horses, competed in Jumping and Eventing and rode Reiners as well. I always make sure to wrap down to the ankle to keep the weight of the wrap from being solely on the tendon. Some people will say that polo wraps may wear out faster but they are cheaper to purchase. If your not sure how to apply them, make sure to have someone show you.
If you’d like to see how to properly apply a polo wrap, you can watch the video listed below on YouTube. This is an old video with Miss Hottie made for my friend Jessica Thompson. It goes over the front and hind wraps. If you have any questions please feel free to let me know ☺.
Bandit shown here running in Polo Wraps
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