PDA

View Full Version : Spinoff: Neck strap question...



subk
Dec. 16, 2009, 09:13 AM
How many of you ride with a neck strap? I think they are great and I've got my daughter riding with one. Me? Not so much and I probably should be! How do you re-wire your brain to reach for one when you're having a "moment." I can't ever remember it's there when I ought to grab it...I'd be sunk if someone ever roached my horses' manes.

Hilary
Dec. 16, 2009, 09:23 AM
I started riding Star with a breastplate (hunt style) and it did take me a bit to figure out how/when to grab it but it totally works when she has her bucking/leaping moments.

Bucking straps didn't do anything because they are too loose - by the time it tightened up I was too far out of the tack to be saved! A neck strap for jumping I don't need. The breastplate (or yoke) sits within finger's grasp so I can grab it really fast and because it's near her withers when I grab it I get sucked into the saddle but my upper body can stay back. It actully seems to calm her down when I grab it- but probably because I'm sitting deeper. Racing folks use yokes to slow horses too, so it may have that effect as well.

A good cycle - I'm more secure, so I stay calm, so that calms her, so she leaps less.

AppJumpr08
Dec. 16, 2009, 09:29 AM
I actually prefer a neckstrap to grabbing my breastplate...
The neckstrap is higher up, so I can keep my hand out in front of me instead of right in front of my saddle :)

Jleegriffith
Dec. 16, 2009, 09:38 AM
I think sometimes I need two straps- one further up to be used as a jumping neck strap and the other far enough back that I can grab during the all hell is breaking loose moments. I have really short arms so the neck strap I use for jumping doesn't work when I need to lock myself into the saddle as it is to far forward for me to reach.

I use a stirrup leather for my jumping strap and normally just the hunt style breastplate works well enough to get my hand under during moments of hold on or else:lol: I find I use my breastplate a ton when out foxhunting especially when going up and down hills or sometimes when I think I am going to have a bad spot to a fence.

I should use them way more than I do since almost all the horses I ride are super green and either learning to jump or still so green when jumping you wish you had that strap on when it is already to late! Now that we are talking about it I am going to sit them on the hook near all the bridles so I make myself use them more often.

I was listening to Bruce's speak on young horse and LMAO when he talked about going up the hill and grabbing some mane to balance himself when his young horse took offense to it's mane being pulled and ducked it's head and shoulder and ran off leaving Bruce stranded. A neck strap would have come in handy:lol:

Saskatoonian
Dec. 16, 2009, 09:44 AM
I use a loose yoke. It's in the right location for me - not as far back as a breastplate, and not as far forward as most neck straps I see - and thin enough that I can hold it with my reins without trouble. My 5 year old can be fussy about his mouth, but responds really well to a tug on the yoke by rebalancing himself. I started by using it every time I rode - even for D - to train both of us to it, and got used to it pretty fast. Of course, it probably helps that I have a sufficiently regular incentive to grab it!

spacehorse
Dec. 16, 2009, 10:49 AM
I use a yoke also. I make it somewhat tight, it will move some but the whole point of the thing is to stabilize me, so I don't need it to move a whole lot when I grab it or it defeats (my) purpose!

I do not like breastplates for this purpose. The strap is too low to really help you.

I can't seem to make myself jump even a little tiny x without it in my right hand, just snag it with my pinky finger. It is absolutely ingrained habit.

Saved my *ss more than once!

Meredith Clark
Dec. 16, 2009, 10:53 AM
I never liked using one until I started having issues with my young OTTB refusing (because I was in his face too much).

To train myself I would grab the strap 4 or 5 strides before the fence, almost a preemptive grab!

Now I don't have to hold it the whole course, I am comfortable grabbing it if I need it but I did have to do a few schoolings where I held it for every jump just to get used to it.

edited to add: When I said I was holding it I don't mean letting to of the reins, just holding it with one hand and letting the reins have contact but not tight.

subk
Dec. 16, 2009, 11:09 AM
What's a "yoke." Pictures?

Hilary
Dec. 16, 2009, 11:26 AM
It's a loop around neck that attaches to girth

so, a martingale without the part that goes to the head.

or a breastplate that doesn't attach to the top of the saddle.

IFG
Dec. 16, 2009, 11:26 AM
Not only have I started using a strap when I jump on my own to make me keep my hands forward enough, but I have been using a neck strap on the flat to train myself to keep my hands forward too.

purplnurpl
Dec. 16, 2009, 12:24 PM
I'll use a stirrup leather when I get on a horse that I know rushes fences. Keeps me from snatching rein. I actually hold on to it with one hand always so that if I go to pull back I cannot.

I have had students use one as well, [even for just flat work] and I fix it so that it allows them to carry thier hand in the corrent area. (i.e. not in private areas!!)
Again, I have them always hold it with one hand.

mellsmom
Dec. 16, 2009, 12:31 PM
I thought that's what the running martingale was for :-)
Did my horse need one? No. Did I need a grab strap? yes! Ans less likely to get loose, fall down, etc.

Blugal
Dec. 16, 2009, 01:32 PM
As stated above, neck strap for:

-over-jumping young horses (keeps you on and is easier to grab with both hands; reduces interference with mouth)

-horses that rush - keeps the rider honest and reduces interfering

-prefer it to a bucking strap when the horse's antics are buck-leap forward - buck-leap. I like my hands in front of me and feet on the dashboard.

Breastplate is good for horses that like to spin.

Mane is always good - I like to do the one-hand-grab when I still need some steering/control; but since mane's my mainstay (:lol:), it takes me an adjustment period to rely on a neckstrap when I add that.

To anybody who whines when I make them use a neck-strap in a lesson, I bring out my picture of William Fox-Pitt on a winning Burghley XC round with his. That usually shuts them up :lol:

Gry2Yng
Dec. 16, 2009, 04:24 PM
I usually grab it a few strides out with one hand. Habit developed really quickly, when it is there I use it. Once they stop being so green I have to take it off for a while because I just love the damn thing.

Thomas_1
Dec. 16, 2009, 04:29 PM
Yes always.... it's habitual

TimelyImpulse
Dec. 16, 2009, 04:31 PM
I use a neckstrap (spare stirrup leather) on both my OTTBs. If we get on a good run hunting, and need to slow down quick, they respond much better to me dropping the reins to the buckle and pulling up on the strap-- or hunting breastplate, I use both. It was really hard to do at first, but apparently, race horses are trained to run harder the tighter you hold them in. I looove my neckstrap!

Festivity
Dec. 16, 2009, 04:32 PM
See, this is why I like not pulling the mane. That way I have something to grab when things go wrong without having to remember to put anything on. I am bad about hopping up bareback to just goof off and then ending up going over a few fences. Then again with a neck strap you wouldn't have to untangle yourself after the fun stops.

Merry Fox
Dec. 16, 2009, 04:39 PM
I would love to see pictures of a yoke and a yoke in action if anyone has any.

Do you pick it up with one hand or two? Or are you just hooking your index fingers over the top?

My vice is to let my upper body creep ahead on the way to a jump and I'm wondering if I had something besides the reins to hold if I wouldn't feel more secure and stay more upright. I don't think a traditional stirrup leather around the neck will work for me....it might be too high and encourage my 'creeping' up the neck.

Allagash's mom
Dec. 16, 2009, 04:57 PM
to help my student grab the neck strap (a stirrup leather), I wrapped 1/3 of it in BRIGHT YELLOW vet wrap. Sure made it ugly, but at least a brown strap on a brown horse wouldn't get lost in the pre-jump overload of things-to-do.

:)

Foxhall
Dec. 16, 2009, 07:13 PM
slightly off topic but my old instructor's husband rides at like BN and she would give him lessons. To help teach him to release, she braided a few looser training braid type things in the horses mane and covered them with lime green duct tape (his xc colors) to help him remember where to put his hands!:D:D:D

spacehorse
Dec. 16, 2009, 09:49 PM
http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?pid=30467895&l=2962f612ad&id=1117957561

Of course, I have attached a running attachment in this pic. I also use this for dressage without the attachment. I think a horse looks naked without some sort of neckwear. :lol:

K.
Dec. 16, 2009, 10:53 PM
I used one all last winter riding green ottb's and my friends super hot Holsteiner mare. I actually never ended up using it on the tb's but when I did gallops on the mare I would pull on the neck strap to slow down instead of the reins.. I also used one this summer (dif horse) going xc and to be honest I don't think I remembered to reach for it once.. I do my best to grab mane when I get into trouble, but wish I remembered I had a neck strap too! sometimes those are easier to hang onto when you are wet from going through water!

eventingismylife
Dec. 17, 2009, 01:35 AM
I dont use anything when jumping or on the flat....If my horse takes off from a bad spot and then launches I sometimes grab a little bit of mane or bridge my reins. In the past I have had people loop my horses reins around its neck once and then when you go to jump you just hook your pinkie fingers in it.
I usually suggest putting one braid in a kid's or green rider's mount if they need something to grab when jumping to keep from pulling on mouths, and landing on backs. Or if their mount already has braids you just put a different colored band or ribbon on a braid so they know which one to grab.

Sorelle Farms
Dec. 17, 2009, 05:45 AM
When using a stirrup leather as a neck strap, how tight do you guys make it, and where on the neck are you placing it?
Just trying to get the visual here...
Thanks.

Merry Fox
Dec. 17, 2009, 10:16 AM
Spacehorse, thanks for the picture!

Where did you get your yoke? How tight/loose is it adjusted?

BBowen
Dec. 17, 2009, 10:28 AM
If you look at pictures of Hawley Bennett, she uses a neck strap on her mare, Gin and Juice (I think that is the horse). She said in an article that this horse can jump her out of the tack. Also, Leslie Law told me that they use a neck strap when riding their youngsters; keeps from interfering with the mouth. After that, I sure didn't mind having a neck strap on my youngster. :-)

Jleegriffith
Dec. 17, 2009, 10:32 AM
My jumping stirrup leather.
http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3442/3702104779_f9c3a9cded.jpg

My trainer riding one of the CANTER horses with a neck strap.
http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2599/4140731303_940f4a673c.jpg
Good to have when they jump so high over x-rails!
http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2604/4140733303_98844f1a7d.jpg

Allagash's mom
Dec. 17, 2009, 11:57 AM
Another example of the lurid colored strap I used w/ a student (with a fuzzy on the other side cause she's a sensitive mare+ some:

http://tinyurl.com/ykuk56w

Ja Da Dee
Dec. 17, 2009, 11:58 AM
Oh, I love my neckstrap!! I apparently have a learning disability when it comes to grabbing mane, but have no problem with the neckstrap. I always use it xc, and use it often when doing stadium.


http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?pid=343660&l=535cf23dad&id=1185572083

K.
Dec. 17, 2009, 03:30 PM
When using a stirrup leather as a neck strap, how tight do you guys make it, and where on the neck are you placing it?
Just trying to get the visual here...
Thanks.

it needs to be tight enough so that it stays where you want it. I put it where I want my hands to be when I release.. hope that helps!

Blugal
Dec. 17, 2009, 04:21 PM
I don't make it very tight. I just put it where I want my hands to be, then use mane from either side to braid a quick braid around it, which holds it in place. (Very useful especially for ponies who try to graze, otherwise the neckstrap ends up on the ground!)

Gry2Yng
Dec. 17, 2009, 05:02 PM
My jumping stirrup leather.
http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3442/3702104779_f9c3a9cded.jpg

My trainer riding one of the CANTER horses with a neck strap.
http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2599/4140731303_940f4a673c.jpg
Good to have when they jump so high over x-rails!
http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2604/4140733303_98844f1a7d.jpg

That is a YUMMY chestnut. I like the bay too.

dogdays
Dec. 17, 2009, 11:20 PM
I always use a neck strap when mounting any horse. Lesson learned when horse spooked and jumped forward as I was swinging up and I landed behind the saddle resulting in a bucking, scared to death horse and ultimately a shattered hip for me. Now, with the strap in hand, if the horse jumps forward, I'm going with him. Once mounted safely, I don't touch it until I dismount. The strap has given me a sense of security.

RegentLion
Dec. 18, 2009, 09:10 AM
So what are you guys using for neck straps? Just old stirrup leathers/yokes? Or is there a product marketed as "neck strap" that isn't as long as a stirrup leather with keepers?

The neck straps in the photos you posted all look very nice and tidy... NOT the 'neck strap' that I saw around some lesson barns when I was just starting out.

IFG
Dec. 18, 2009, 09:12 AM
So what are you guys using for neck straps? Just old stirrup leathers/yokes? Or is there a product marketed as "neck strap" that isn't as long as a stirrup leather with keepers?

The neck straps in the photos you posted all look very nice and tidy... NOT the 'neck strap' that I saw around some lesson barns when I was just starting out.

Old stirrup leather.Paying money for one would, IMHO, be absurd. If you are stuck and pay the shipping, I am sure that I could find something old and musty around the barn that would be great once you clean it up.

Jleegriffith
Dec. 18, 2009, 09:22 AM
Stirrups leathers but bartville does make an actual neck strap which is $8 and I have one of those.

Ja Da Dee
Dec. 18, 2009, 10:24 AM
Mine is also a stirrup leather, with electrical tape holding the end to the strap.

Allagash's mom
Dec. 18, 2009, 05:17 PM
So what are you guys using for neck straps? Just old stirrup leathers/yokes? Or is there a product marketed as "neck strap" that isn't as long as a stirrup leather with keepers?

The neck straps in the photos you posted all look very nice and tidy... NOT the 'neck strap' that I saw around some lesson barns when I was just starting out.

Old stirrup leather! nothing better :) picked up a pair for $15 in the used section of the tack store.

ThirdCharm
Dec. 18, 2009, 10:21 PM
I use an old rein, the buckle half, cut to the right length with holes punched in it. Actually right now I'm using an old laced rein with the laces pulled out, so I didn't even have to punch holes. An old stirrup leather would be too bulky for me, I have short fingers!

Jennifer

ncsuequine
Dec. 18, 2009, 10:29 PM
I am so excited to hear that so many people use neck straps and/or something similiar. I have a student that really needs a neck strap. I have insisted, but she is a teenager and really hates the thought of having to use one (right now none of the other teenagers are using one).

I will have to tell her how many people on this board are using one. That will make her feel great.

I use one when i am jumping my gelding, who likes to rush jumps. If I snatch him in the mouth all hell breaks loose, so the neck strap prevents that.

I have ALL my beginners use them and anyone that gets popped out of the saddle!

Congratulations to all that are not too proud to use one!

subk
Dec. 18, 2009, 10:32 PM
I am so excited to hear that so many people use neck straps and/or something similiar. I have a student that really needs a neck strap. I have insisted, but she is a teenager and really hates the thought of having to use one (right now none of the other teenagers are using one).
Google up a picture of William Fox-Pitt on XC winning Burghley or some other huge event and show it to her. Neck strap will be right there in every XC picture...

KBG Eventer
Dec. 18, 2009, 11:07 PM
I'm going to have to try a neck strap again some time! I used one a long time ago. Usually I use mane, but even with that I don't really have the habit of grabbing the mane when I'm in trouble for some reason. I definitely use the mane (in between fences, grids, riding bareback, etc), but if I have an awkward jump or something happens my reaction isn't to grab mane. I have to be holding a chunk in advanced.

I have always had very quiet horses though so that probably has a lot to do with it. I don't think Sonny has literally ever bucked under saddle with anyone. A 12 year old backed him bareback as a 2 year old and took him over his first jumps. :lol:

Well anyway, I'm going to try it out. Foxhunting would probably be a great time to work on it. :)