Bandage Liners Review

Well this is an old photo, this was the first time I put her dressage boots on
I love doing review posts but haven’t really bought much that’s new and interesting recently since I’m working to stick to my budget. However, I have been using a new set up to protect Katai’s legs for a while now and wanted to share some info and do a review on how it’s working for us. First though, some background.


Still using the boots but Katai wasn’t happy about it

I know that leg protection is a contentious topic and with that being said there are so many variables for each person and each horse that I would never seek to encourage anyone to do something different if they have something that’s working for them. I believe that everyone should seek out information, including the latest research, on the various options and make a decision for each horse about what’s best for them. With that being said, I’ve had multiple friends need to retire their horse or nurse it through a long recovery related to interference injuries so this is something that I may be a bit more picky about than others. I know that most horses shouldn’t NEED protection, however, as we’re building strength, learning the lateral work, figuring out our balance, and occasionally having tantrums I’m way more comfortable knowing that Katai has that extra protection.

Also still wearing the boots.
Side note: I can't believe how far we've come from this!
She was engaged here but not that up in front and now we're getting that much more.
In my area, Minneapolis, MN, the weather only reaches 90* and above for a month or two each year and even then we have very few days that are actually above the 80s. In addition, I don’t ride for that long, or do extensive conditioning work, especially when it’s that hot out since I do not handle the heat well and typically end up with heat stroke if I do any athletic activity when the temp is above the low 90s. Because of those factors I don’t worry much about heat retention and to reduce the risk further I typically skip the bandages if I do ride on those very hot days.

Here we were finally starting to use polos (without bandage liners) full time
Side note again: I love this picture so much! Now we just need to get back to this level of work :)
 
Finally, I think boots are great. They can be way cooler than wraps, are quicker and easier to put on, can stay cleaner, and limit the risk of wrapping injury for those who don’t have instruction on proper wrapping technique. However, Katai hates them with a passion. She will literally pin her ears and threaten to kick me if I put her gorgeous, fluffy, dressage boots on and I don’t even put them on that tight. I’ve tried various boots and she hates all of them. When I realized that it was the boots and not that she was anticipating work, or ulcery, I switched to using polo wrap but never felt comfortable about the lack of protection they offered. Then it seemed like bandage liners were becoming more popular so I did some research and decided to try them out. Over Black Friday I bought two sets of Lemieux bandage liners and then for Christmas I got a set of Eskadron liners.


See how poofy?

Lemieux Bandage Liners
Size: small

I got one black set and one white set of these from Riding Warehouse. They were way cheaper than the Eskadron’s and got really great reviews. Here’s where having a smallish equine might affect my choice a bit so YMMV. They’re rather thick and made out of memory foam that varies in stiffness. Two of the white liners are very soft and give well, the other two are way stiffer and all of the black set are stiffer, thicker foam. With that, because Katai has small legs, they’re really poofy and even with good wrapping pressure they made her look like she’s wearing casts on her legs or 80s style leg warmers. I’m not a fan of how poofy they are and how thick and the varying thickness of the foam makes me wonder about quality control.

I was also using these during the winter in an unheated barn and in that environment the memory foam was especially stiff. In order to get them snug I needed to pull the wraps pretty tight and then when they warmed up they became more pliable and were looser than would be ideal.

My Opinion?: Overall, I wouldn’t buy again for my purpose. On a larger horse or a warmer environment they would likely work well.

Much better

Eskadron Bandage Liners:
Size: small horse
I got a set of these in white from my mom for Christmas. Unfortunately she got me the small horse size vs. the small pony size but luckily this just makes Katai look very European and adds extra protection so I’m pretty ok with it.

I adore these bandage liners in every way and have been using them for almost every ride since I got them. These are very consistent and much more pliable than the Lemieux liners and seem to be cooler underneath than the Lemieux liners after a ride. They’re easy to wrap over and because they’re evenly pliable I’m confident that I’m able to keep the pressure even.

My Opinion?: I love that Katai has extra protection from interference during rides I will absolutely be buying more of these. I’ve got a black set in small horse size and a white set in small pony size on my list so that I can rotate and wash them more easily and have a smaller pair for when I want to be less obnoxiously DQesque.


And the polo wraps come in cute colors that complement our saddle pads!
Side note again: forgive the slightly messier wrapping job here.
I was still figuring out how to wrap the back ones so they don't go up as far as they should.
Polo Wraps:
With my bandage liners I’ve been using polo wraps rather than exercise bandages because they’re what I’m comfortable wrapping, and are more widely available. I did have to get some new polo wraps though because my very cut down polos that were the right length for a pony without liners were way too short for use with liners. I got two sets of Eskadron pony polos (one of the few brands who actually carries pony polos) and a set of PS of Sweden polos.

The Eskadron pony polos are narrower width rather than shorter length and are AMAZING to wrap. The narrower width means that the coverage when wrapping is easier to get consistent and it’s easier to maneuver them around smaller legs. They’re also nicely stretchy and the Velcro is set up to not have a bunch of extra velcro tab sticking out based on the smaller leg circumference (of course the liners also help with this).

The PS of Sweden polos work well also but are much wider so while I can still wrap them very safely they don’t look as neat and are tougher to get a good wrap around the fetlock with small pony legs. I do like the material they’re made out of though and they have an appropriate amount of stretch.

Katai’s Opinion?: I was curious if wrapping with the liners would make Katai mad since the only thing she’s liked so far were plain polos. However, as of today after using these consistently for almost 5 months she still doesn’t seem to care when I’m wrapping her legs. With that I’m giving them the pony mare stamp of approval.

I purchased all of these items with my own money or received them from family members as gifts. I am not being compensated for this review.

Comments

  1. Good to know about the lemieux ones. I have some lemieux boots and wraps I like and might have been tempted by the bandage liners. The eskadron ones sound great!

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    1. They may or may not work for you but the Eskadron ones are much better IMHO

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