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princessfluffybritches
Sep. 27, 2010, 04:06 PM
I've always learned that correct dressage is like an open phone conversation with both parties listening and having a calm informative conversation.
Then, why the crank, flash, etc-doesn't that sound more like you're leaving a demanding one sided voicemail message?

BetterOffRed
Sep. 27, 2010, 04:08 PM
Depending on the horse, the crank, flash, etc. reduced the static on the line. 'Can you hear me know?'

Calamber
Sep. 27, 2010, 04:17 PM
Must be a preponderance of static on the line these days. I don't see many riding without double bridles, cranks, flashes, draw reins, spurs, etc. and no I do not subscribe to the bitless bridle stupidity but I do wonder. If the end result is complete obedience, or more intellectually stated, 'relaxed, yet active contact, forward and freely moving'; are all of the horses suddenly in a revolt where they do not want to work? Maybe someone should become the mediator for the contract negotiations with the EISTDRU (Equines In Service To Dressage Riders Union).

shawneeAcres
Sep. 27, 2010, 04:59 PM
I rarely ever use any type of a flash, dropped or figure eight noseband. Most horses absolutely do not need it and resent it. I also do not overly tighten the caveson. I think a flash is a crutch for a hrose that has not been trained to properly relax the jaw

spirithorse
Sep. 27, 2010, 05:16 PM
Must be a preponderance of static on the line these days....and no I do not subscribe to the bitless bridle stupidity but I do wonder. .

Calamer:
Well, hopefully by next year, bitless dressage will have been recognized.
The problem currently is that the old school simply refuses to admit that continuing to think inside the box of human preceptions, may in fact be detrimental to our horses.

Recently schooled a Canadian Horse first in bit and then bitless, and filmed it....what a difference.

That being said, one can ride with a bit if they do not take hold and do not let the horse take hold. In the old days we were taught the vibration technique of the reins, wherein, there is never consistent pull being applied.
It resulted in horses that are basically free and unconstrained, because we had to ask the horse and allow the horse to make the appropriate decision....and of course that can be repetitive...................LOL

Bogey2
Sep. 27, 2010, 06:58 PM
oh for crying out loud...I have a flash and a noseband but my horse and I still "hear" each other. I don't crank anything up so tight that it's uncomfortable but I have yet to kill a horse or have it kill me because I used a flash.
As for this bitless stuff, get over it. I love to ride my horses in a halter and lead rope when just hanging around. I don't mistake any of it for dressage and yes, even my schoolmaster who works well off the seat. No contact, no dressage.

CHT
Sep. 27, 2010, 07:03 PM
Flash, figure-8 and dropped nosebands can help support the lower jaw of the horse allowing the horse to carry its lower jaw more relaxed. They can increase a green horse's comfort level in the bit and in bit pressure. They are not meant to be super tight, and should allow some movement of the jaw.

I find it odd how many people do not understand the use of these devices.

I find it equally odd how some people jump on the bitless bandwagon without considering the mechanics of the bitless bridles...particularly the ones with the cross under straps...have you ever put diagonal pressure under your own jaw? Not as pleasant as the sales people would have you believe.

spirithorse
Sep. 27, 2010, 07:19 PM
I find it equally odd how some people jump on the bitless bandwagon without considering the mechanics of the bitless bridles...particularly the ones with the cross under straps...have you ever put diagonal pressure under your own jaw? Not as pleasant as the sales people would have you believe.

CHT/Bogey2:

A bitted rider should be able to accomplish GP dressage in a simple snaffle with no other devices.....
A horse does not work with its mouth open, it is the rider that makes this happen.....
A horse cannot be comfortable with a bit in its mouth for the mouth cavity is not designed for the use of a bit.....it either or both compresses the tongue or compresses up against the palate....

Not trying to cause a rift here, just passing on information predicated upon me being the inventor of the cross under the jaw rein technology in 1988 and having over twenty years of schooling with it.

Neither one of you truly understand the mechanics of the operating technology of the cross under the jaw reins.

First and foremost, the design mandates that the rider use lightconsistent contact...no pulling.....the design requires the vibrate, hold, release principle I learned with a bit 40 years ago.

FYI, the cross under the jaw rein operating technology has been designed for instant release. The problem is that the numerous copycat bridles do not release and thus I will agree about there being jaw pressure on those units. As for pressures, the jaw pressures do not cause resistance in the neck muscles like bits do.

Bogey2
Sep. 27, 2010, 07:28 PM
A bitted rider should be able to accomplish GP dressage in a simple snaffle with no other devices.....

A lot of horses can do the movements in a snaffle...but what you suggest about bitless is disturbing. I have seen some of the video of what you call dressage. I will tell you that bouncing around on the back of a hollow horse who is built to work over his back is much more uncomfortable than anything I do in a bridle.

spirithorse
Sep. 27, 2010, 07:33 PM
Bogey....

I would love to place under the saddle sensors on Olympic dressage riders so they could see how much impact they are making on the back of the horse.

As for bitless videos on Youtube, I have yet to see one riding any differently than with a bit............CH of course schools in halter and bit so she does not fall into that catagory.

shawneeAcres
Sep. 27, 2010, 07:52 PM
No I do not subscribe to "bitless dressage" sorry. As stated I rarely use any sort of flash, never use a crank (altho one of my bridles has one, I don't "crank" it), but I feel dressage is supposed to be done in a proper bridle with a proper bit. The western people have "bitless" (hackamore) classes but ONLY for the young horse, they are then expected to show in a curb bit. I have ridden in such devices, and really you have no "feel" without a bit in my opinion

princessfluffybritches
Sep. 27, 2010, 08:10 PM
Calamer:
Well, hopefully by next year, bitless dressage will have been recognized.
The problem currently is that the old school simply refuses to admit that continuing to think inside the box of human preceptions, may in fact be detrimental to our horses.

Recently schooled a Canadian Horse first in bit and then bitless, and filmed it....what a difference.

That being said, one can ride with a bit if they do not take hold and do not let the horse take hold. In the old days we were taught the vibration technique of the reins, wherein, there is never consistent pull being applied.
It resulted in horses that are basically free and unconstrained, because we had to ask the horse and allow the horse to make the appropriate decision....and of course that can be repetitive...................LOL

I agree, that's how I ride. I consider the bit to be for both of us knowing where the other is; a meeting place.

Bogey2
Sep. 27, 2010, 08:10 PM
spirithorse, if you were an athlete you would better understand. Biomechanics is a good thing if used correctly. My QH does not want to be ridden over his back and uphill...he is not built for the work..so guess what? I don't ask him to do anything collected.
My Hanoverian is built to work over his back and stepping under with his lovely hocks. He is 24 and SOUND because he is ridden correctly. He has NEVER had anything injected...so why is he so sound? Because I do not allow him to be ridden on his forehand or hollow. The only time he shows discomfort is when I make the mistake of putting someone on him who throws the reins away and bobbles all over his back...:eek: I then remove them from the saddle.
I can't touch my toes or do a cartwheel...so I do not do gymnastics. I do yoga but I modify for MY conformation.

Are you getting my drift here?

Bogey2
Sep. 27, 2010, 08:14 PM
fluffy, since you are so Kumbayah show me the way...post some video of the dressage you are doing.

princessfluffybritches
Sep. 27, 2010, 08:22 PM
Must be a preponderance of static on the line these days. I don't see many riding without double bridles, cranks, flashes, draw reins, spurs, etc. and no I do not subscribe to the bitless bridle stupidity but I do wonder. If the end result is complete obedience, or more intellectually stated, 'relaxed, yet active contact, forward and freely moving'; are all of the horses suddenly in a revolt where they do not want to work? Maybe someone should become the mediator for the contract negotiations with the EISTDRU (Equines In Service To Dressage Riders Union).

I like your comparison. I don't want to force complete obedience, I want the horse to give obedience because he is happy to.
You can tell alot by watching dressage and focusing on the expression on the horse's face. I , personally, like happy.

princessfluffybritches
Sep. 27, 2010, 08:32 PM
This article is IMO very good reading.

http://www.sustainabledressage.net/tack/bridle.php

Bogey2
Sep. 27, 2010, 08:41 PM
yeah, great reading:lol: IYO

BetterOffRed
Sep. 27, 2010, 09:12 PM
oh for crying out loud...I have a flash and a noseband but my horse and I still "hear" each other. I don't crank anything up so tight that it's uncomfortable but I have yet to kill a horse or have it kill me because I used a flash.
:yes:

WORD.

princessfluffybritches
Sep. 27, 2010, 09:13 PM
Maybe someone should open a new thread,
"Snarky People Who Love Cranks and Flashes (and duct-tape)"

Ibex
Sep. 27, 2010, 10:54 PM
Maybe someone should open a new thread,
"Snarky People Who Love Cranks and Flashes (and duct-tape)"

I'm in. :D

dwblover
Sep. 28, 2010, 08:57 AM
Am I living in another universe or something? Dressage is constantly being hounded, there is talk of whips flailing, spurs bashing, flashes squeezing, and cranks cutting off circulation. Where are you guys seeing this happen? I go to a lot of clinics, I've gone to watch two big rated shows within the past year, and my trainer (when she comes up this way) is the head trainer at a huge and very competetive breeding farm.

And guess what? All the riders at the clinics have been delightful. The riders at the rated shows were also very good and patient. In fact I only saw 1 person at that big show who I thought was being ugly toward her horse. Another trainer reported it to the TD and the TD jumped on it immediately!

My trainer never suggests for anyone to be abusive with their whips, never asks us to tighten the flash up a hole, and she prefers us to wear the plastic spurs with the roller balls. Am I in the only place in the country where people are kind to their horses? I just don't get where all the "horrors of dressage" are going on. And I'll tell you right now that everyone who rides at trainer's farm follows the same principles, they are kind and patient, and gasp.........winning!

Reddfox
Sep. 28, 2010, 09:09 AM
I think the operative words whether you ride with a bit or bitless is releasing pressure. I think that it's a stretch to say that EVERY horse with a bit in it's mouth MUST be uncomfortable and that EVERY horse that goes bitless must be more comfortable simply because of the absence of a bit.

I have seen very many sympathetic riders with forgiving hands having open communication and I have seen many riders riding backwards with restrictive hands bitted AND bitless.

I am of the firm mindset that when used properly, a bit is the tool best suited for subtle communication - the metal picks up vibrations in a way that crossed leathers or big plastic bits can't. Think tuning fork. But, I'm not naive enough to think that everyone has the knowledge to use a bit in this way - but I also don't think for a minute that just because a horse is bitless that it means their rider is more subtle with the aids or more forgiving or that the horse is more comfortable. So, why don't we agree to disagree on the bits/bitless debate and concentrate on getting the most out of our horses - bitted or bitless.

BetterOffRed
Sep. 28, 2010, 10:11 AM
I guess I don't understand why the bitless brujas are so focused on dressage. For the most part, dressage is highly monitored with stewards, TDs, drug testing, extensive lists of what is legal/illegal equipment.

I think their energy would be so much better focused on disciplines that use illegal bits, equipment and training. Go hound them and leave us to our 20 meter circles.

dwblover
Sep. 28, 2010, 10:16 AM
Okay, after seeing recent photos of Parzival being warmed-up at WEG, I have to retract my statement. It would seem the bad images of dressage are coming straight from the top of the sport. I just wish that people would not assume ALL dressage riders choose those methods.

Bogey2
Sep. 28, 2010, 10:48 AM
I guess I don't understand why the bitless brujas are so focused on dressage. For the most part, dressage is highly monitored with stewards, TDs, drug testing, extensive lists of what is legal/illegal equipment

yes and in my area it's rare someone needs to be eliminated.

princessfluffybritches
Sep. 28, 2010, 12:49 PM
Does anyone think that these controversial methods coincide with horses that are brought along too fast these days?

Petstorejunkie
Sep. 28, 2010, 02:25 PM
Does anyone think that these controversial methods coincide with horses that are brought along too fast these days?
yes :yes:
I can remember when 18 was middle aged for a show horse... now they are retired.
start them slow to ride them longer

princessfluffybritches
Sep. 29, 2010, 09:32 AM
Am I living in another universe or something? Dressage is constantly being hounded, there is talk of whips flailing, spurs bashing, flashes squeezing, and cranks cutting off circulation. Where are you guys seeing this happen? I go to a lot of clinics, I've gone to watch two big rated shows within the past year, and my trainer (when she comes up this way) is the head trainer at a huge and very competetive breeding farm.

And guess what? All the riders at the clinics have been delightful. The riders at the rated shows were also very good and patient. In fact I only saw 1 person at that big show who I thought was being ugly toward her horse. Another trainer reported it to the TD and the TD jumped on it immediately!

My trainer never suggests for anyone to be abusive with their whips, never asks us to tighten the flash up a hole, and she prefers us to wear the plastic spurs with the roller balls. Am I in the only place in the country where people are kind to their horses? I just don't get where all the "horrors of dressage" are going on. And I'll tell you right now that everyone who rides at trainer's farm follows the same principles, they are kind and patient, and gasp.........winning!

You're very lucky to be in on a good group. My gaited horse is at an exceptional barn where padding etc is frowned upon.

EqTrainer
Sep. 29, 2010, 09:42 AM
I find that it's more productive to focus on my own riding and that of my students, then that of people I don't know and never will, who have no relevance to my life at all.

The mature version of MYOB.

I am this way, at least in part, because I have found that in generals, if someone is yelping about someone elses bad riding, they are probably riding badly on the opposite end of the bad riding spectrum. For example, on one of the recent threads someone is yelping about horses not being poll high, etc. Etc. If you click on their website link, their horses are poll high all right.. And they are strung out with their backs dropped and under necks in full action to achieve this "ideal". No doubt they are proud... Well, good working hunters show a better balance and impulsion as well as acceptance of the bridle than that.

So... If you look around a bit, it becomes clear that paying attention to what you can positively influence (yourself and the people you teach) is more productive than picking a topic and whining about it.

BetterOffRed
Sep. 29, 2010, 10:52 AM
I find that it's more productive to focus on my own riding and that of my students, then that of people I don't know and never will, who have no relevance to my life at all.

The mature version of MYOB.

I am this way, at least in part, because I have found that in generals, if someone is yelping about someone elses bad riding, they are probably riding badly on the opposite end of the bad riding spectrum. For example, on one of the recent threads someone is yelping about horses not being poll high, etc. Etc. If you click on their website link, their horses are poll high all right.. And they are strung out with their backs dropped and under necks in full action to achieve this "ideal". No doubt they are proud... Well, good working hunters show a better balance and impulsion as well as acceptance of the bridle than that.

So... If you look around a bit, it becomes clear that paying attention to what you can positively influence (yourself and the people you teach) is more productive than picking a topic and whining about it.

Where's the like button when I need it!

princessfluffybritches
Sep. 30, 2010, 02:00 AM
This thread was about opinions about appliances that may or may not effect communication (mostly from the horse). It was not supposed to be about bitless and who rides better. For those pro crank/flash, can you offer reasons why these things improve your communication?

BetterOffRed
Sep. 30, 2010, 03:24 PM
okay, I will bite.

It all depends on the horse and what the horse needs. For some horses it it isn't an issue, for others it is. You have to take the horse and their issues into account for what equipment you are going to use. If you have a horse that goes great with a plain cavesson and no flash- then AWESOME. And if you don't, then you have to investigate other tools to help you and the horse.

The fact of the matter is that if you are doing dressage you are scored on the general attributes that are gaits, impulsion, submission (horse coming up in the bridle, lack resistance to the bridle, willingness to take contact) rider (inc. use of the aids).

Here is why I use a flash cavesson with a padded crank with a snaffle bit. He was a show jumper for the 1st 6 years of his life. Had been ridden in a double twisted snaffle to keep him from getting too strong over the jumps. He was very much backed off the bit, had a habit of carrying his mouth just slightly open, and I rode with zero ounces in my hand- not in a good way. All of these things are resistence and a lack of submission to the bridle(which you get knocked for in dressage). I tried riding him with no cavesson, no flash, plain cavesson. No amount expensive bits to encourage the horse to 'play with the bit' and relax in the mouth worked. Cranking my reins shorter or driving him from my seat into the bridle didn't work- he just went faster/bigger with more resistence in the bridle.

By using the crank I have an evenly distributed amount of pressure (and it's padded, and I also add padding). The flash also helps to close his mouth so he's just not 'carrying' the bit or picking it up and dropping it. Sometimes you get a false sense that because you are carrying ounces in your hands that that is relaxation. It isn't. Esp. if they are carrying tension in their head, poll, neck shoulders then back..It is all interrelated. I can't influence him if there is tension. So by having an even steady connection to his mouth to my hands with a cavesson and flash I can apply effective right or left flexion as needed. I can get a reaction/a softening and then I can do a micro give and test his self carriage. I can use a half halt to get him through in his neck and relax. Now the movement in my hands can be smaller, minimal and I can get a reaction and still be effective. It is a steady lightness of contact and willing submission on his part.

I just couldn't go above second level with a horse that was resistent to the bit...trying to do a shoulder in, a lengthening, a half pass, a canter walk or worse a counter canter walk transition or a rein back with a horse that was resisant to the bit/bridle. ugggh! Quel nightmare!

naturalequus
Sep. 30, 2010, 06:54 PM
I've worked with similar horses BOR and in fact my primary jumper is exactly as you described your boy. Mouth gaping open initially, zero contact, hollow, tense beyond belief. He is an OTTB and was ridden in a ring bit and a flash. First thing I did was put him in a low-ported snaffle that allowed him some tongue relief. Mouth closed almost completely. Next, I actually stayed off his back for the next few months and just worked him on the ground developing emotional collection and relaxation (at least getting it started!) so that he was safe u/s. Then, u/s, we just used patterns and exercises to work our way up the Training Scale and voila, a soft, relaxed, submissive dressage horse without tying his mouth shut!

So, in general, why can't the same apply to other tense and hollow horses? Working up the Training Scale, you are supposed to develop rhythm and relaxation initially. Why can't it be done classically, without the cranks and figure-8's? This is just my personal opinion, but all the specialised nosebands seem to simply be a band-aid. In my experiences, where cranks and figure-8's have been used for clearer communication, it's been to shut down the static the horse's create - their communication - making it more one-sided so that they could hear the rider better. But why not instead address why the horse feels the need to communicate thusly and really pound in that Training Scale? Resistance to the bridle and lack of submission are problems easily solved with relaxation (the cornerstone of the Training Scale) and earning the horse's partnership.

On that note, I do not understand the term 'static' riders are using - what static (other than 'static' created by the horse, as mentioned above)? When my horses are mentally and emotionally developed (ie. 'collected' emotionally and thus at least relaxed) and we have a partnership, there is no static. They are tuned in to me and are listening carefully because we are a team. Someone care to explain in further detail what they meant?

princessfluffybritches
Sep. 30, 2010, 07:29 PM
Betteroffred, thanks for taking the time to explain reasons why a crank or flash would be used. I guess I can compare it to hooves,( which is my latest obsession); there's the book ideal, then there's reality. And you sound like you're someone who is using these items as tools. And Naturalequus suggests these items are "bandaids" which they can be, but possibly they can also be a stepping stone? Naturalequus, it's too bad that they are used too frequently as a bandaid.

Maybe it's not so much the equipment, but the person using it? Maybe it has more to do with an individual's goals? Maybe you can't draw conclusions from just seeing a crank and flash on a horse?

Naturalequus, like you, my satisfaction comes from succeeding with the training scale. But I've never worked with a horse that has been so mentally and physically damaged that they have just hung up the phone and are not taking calls. Do you think that there are horses out there who cannot be taken up the training scale in the ideal way?

Maybe there should be a level you reach in competition where you are no longer allowed to use a crank?

naturalequus
Sep. 30, 2010, 08:17 PM
It is certainly possible for them to be used as a stepping stone I suppose, and I definitely agree it is more about the individual than the tool being used (as with anything), but isn't there a better way? And if the crank or figure-8 is being used as a training tool, should it not be possible to remove said training tool once the goals warranting its use are accomplished??

I have worked with horses who are so mentally and emotionally damaged that they initially completely tuned their riders out and had no concept of the term 'relaxation' - and the Training Scale still worked with them. Just took longer. My jumper OTTB is a prime example. Personally, I don't believe that there are horses who cannot be taken up the training scale the ideal way if they are given time. However I have to concede I am not 'all knowledgeable' (no one is, haha!) and I have not worked with every single horse out there on this planet (lol). The more you learn about horses, the more you realise how little you actually know. That said, I do not see how one cannot possibly develop relaxation in a horse without the use of such training aids, irregardless of the horse's past baggage or the situation, given time. I am interested to hear input from others here though!

Percheron X
Sep. 30, 2010, 08:28 PM
I've always learned that correct dressage is like an open phone conversation with both parties listening and having a calm informative conversation.
Then, why the crank, flash, etc-doesn't that sound more like you're leaving a demanding one sided voicemail message?

A flash/dropped noseband keeps the bit in the proper location so it won't move around as the horse chews, swallows etc...

The intent of the flash is to stabilize the position of the bit in the horses mouth so the horse can better perceive the clarity of the riders rein aids.

naturalequus
Sep. 30, 2010, 08:53 PM
So, what about the horses who can still listen while they chew and swallow? Why can some horses listen through the chewing and swallowing, and some "can't"?

I can understand the intention for refinement and subtler communication however does the drop noseband (and what about cranks and such??) really create a substantial difference in the stability of the bit (research?) and is that level of subtlety really required when it is not required elsewhere in other scenarios?

I am questioning honestly here :p

netg
Sep. 30, 2010, 09:10 PM
So, what about the horses who can still listen while they chew and swallow? Why can some horses listen through the chewing and swallowing, and some "can't"?

I love when my horse chews and swallows. Isn't it called the "stretchy chewy circle" for a reason?


In all seriousness, I do actually love that from my horse. I've discussed his tendency to get btv and back off contact, and if he's chewing he's thinking about the contact and reaching for it instead of tensing and bracing himself behind it. His whole body is softer, more forward, back lifted, more responsive, while he's chewing.

quietann
Sep. 30, 2010, 09:28 PM
I do wonder why (some) people are so determined to go after dressage. Not that it's perfect, but... look at some of the bits used in other disciplines, while dressage snaffles are generally not harsh at all; if one shows, they are not allowed to be (e.g. no ported snaffles allowed!) Look at the corkscrews, twisted wires, super long-shanked curbs, curbs with sharp extensions that dig into a horse's tongue, bits made of bicycle chains etc.! (I wandered into a tack store trailer at a Morgan show recently, and there was not ONE legal dressage snaffle in the place. Most were twists, and most were wicked thin. To be fair, a lot of Morgans have big tongues and low palates -- ask me how I know -- so some of those big thick "gentle" snaffles drive them nuts because there's no room in the mouth for them.)

Sometimes I think the flash, crank, figure-8 etc. get used in dressage because the allowed bits are quite mild. And please remember, cranks don't have to be cranked, flashes don't have to be tight, etc. But I do think it's ridiculous how many people seem to assume that if it's a dressage horse, it needs a flash. (My mare needs a flash with a loose ring, just because the rotation of the loose ring bothers her. As she comes back into work, I'll be trying some other variations to see if she's happier without the "noise" of the loose ring.)

naturalequus
Sep. 30, 2010, 09:48 PM
I love when my horse chews and swallows. Isn't it called the "stretchy chewy circle" for a reason?


In all seriousness, I do actually love that from my horse. I've discussed his tendency to get btv and back off contact, and if he's chewing he's thinking about the contact and reaching for it instead of tensing and bracing himself behind it. His whole body is softer, more forward, back lifted, more responsive, while he's chewing.

Exactly, I love seeing that foaming mouth and having a horse happily snacking away on the bit. When they are relaxed it is not a disturbance and I haven't found it to interrupt communication. Am I missing something or misunderstanding??

naturalequus
Sep. 30, 2010, 09:53 PM
I do wonder why (some) people are so determined to go after dressage. Not that it's perfect, but... look at some of the bits used in other disciplines, while dressage snaffles are generally not harsh at all; if one shows, they are not allowed to be (e.g. no ported snaffles allowed!) Look at the corkscrews, twisted wires, super long-shanked curbs, curbs with sharp extensions that dig into a horse's tongue, bits made of bicycle chains etc.! (I wandered into a tack store trailer at a Morgan show recently, and there was not ONE legal dressage snaffle in the place. Most were twists, and most were wicked thin. To be fair, a lot of Morgans have big tongues and low palates -- ask me how I know -- so some of those big thick "gentle" snaffles drive them nuts because there's no room in the mouth for them.)

Sometimes I think the flash, crank, figure-8 etc. get used in dressage because the allowed bits are quite mild. And please remember, cranks don't have to be cranked, flashes don't have to be tight, etc. But I do think it's ridiculous how many people seem to assume that if it's a dressage horse, it needs a flash. (My mare needs a flash with a loose ring, just because the rotation of the loose ring bothers her. As she comes back into work, I'll be trying some other variations to see if she's happier without the "noise" of the loose ring.)

Ported snaffles should be allowed - they apply slightly more bar pressure however offer tongue relief, which is particularly important to the horse who is working in a collected frame, where swallowing and lifting the tongue might be otherwise more difficult in the absence of a port. Ask the Mylers and professionals who have studied bits. If it is under 2'' it does not affect the palate whatsoever (though of course this may vary with some horses, I am simply describing the typical situation - every horse's mouth conformation need be evaluated individually). Many horses greatly appreciate that tongue relief. Please do not confuse port with increased severity, because that just is not the case.

Honestly I pick on bad riding and poor techniques (etc) no matter the discipline, not simply dressage. I think that likely goes for most individuals in discussion here.

Percheron X
Sep. 30, 2010, 10:34 PM
So, what about the horses who can still listen while they chew and swallow? Why can some horses listen through the chewing and swallowing, and some "can't"?

I can understand the intention for refinement and subtler communication however does the drop noseband (and what about cranks and such??) really create a substantial difference in the stability of the bit (research?) and is that level of subtlety really required when it is not required elsewhere in other scenarios?

I am questioning honestly here :p

The flash is not meant to prevent chewing and swallowing.

It is meant to provide a limitation on excessive motion of the horse's jaw and the bit, and thus encourage expectance of the bit.

If you've ever seen a horse go with it's mouth agape, tongue sticking out, or honestly evading the bit in any manor (not a comfort or physical issue), a flash can help that horse by creating an exceptable range of motion for the the jaw, tongue, and bit.

Think of it this way....

A horse that does not need a flash tends to move it's jaw, tongue and bit within the exact same parameters as the flash allows for.

That is why some horses go better in a flash.... :p:winkgrin::winkgrin:

ToN Farm
Sep. 30, 2010, 10:50 PM
Ported snaffles should be allowed - they apply slightly more bar pressure however offer tongue relief, which is particularly important to the horse who is working in a collected frame, where swallowing and lifting the tongue might be otherwise more difficult in the absence of a port. But what about when you transition to the double bridle. Then you can't have a ported bradoon with a ported curb. How does the horse lift the tongue then? To be honest, I had not thought about it being more difficult for the horse to swallow while in a collected frame.

princessfluffybritches
Sep. 30, 2010, 11:02 PM
Ported snaffles should be allowed - they apply slightly more bar pressure however offer tongue relief, which is particularly important to the horse who is working in a collected frame, where swallowing and lifting the tongue might be otherwise more difficult in the absence of a port. Ask the Mylers and professionals who have studied bits. If it is under 2'' it does not affect the palate whatsoever (though of course this may vary with some horses, I am simply describing the typical situation - every horse's mouth conformation need be evaluated individually). Many horses greatly appreciate that tongue relief. Please do not confuse port with increased severity, because that just is not the case.

Honestly I pick on bad riding and poor techniques (etc) no matter the discipline, not simply dressage. I think that likely goes for most individuals in discussion here.

I, for one, think that jointed snaffle bits are not the least severe most horse friendly bits. In fact, one of my horsey friends' dad calls them tongue pinchers. One of my horses cannot stand anything jointed, including a snaffle. She gets spooky, flighty, behind the bit, or running thru aids. And, no it's not my hands. The movement worries her and makes her anxious.. So right now we use a mullen mouth curb with a looser chin strap. She maintains a nice friendly steady contact and soft chewing. Her ears flop as she goes. And I like the curb too. I don't have to do any work. I have my pinkies brushing the pommel, and can do all directions with my seat and pelvis. and legs. I feel the bit I'm using just communicates with parts of her mouth that she trusts. I guess if you listen to a horse, they can tell you what bit they like, LOL

quietann
Sep. 30, 2010, 11:07 PM
Why not a mullen mouth snaffle? (That would be legal if you were showing, and no, I don't think more of people who show...) And the double-jointed snaffles pinch less than single-jointed.

My mare would *love* a bit with some leverage, based on a few experiences riding her in a short-shanked hackamore and a short-shanked pelham. Many horses would, but for showing, anyway, I play by the rules.

princessfluffybritches
Sep. 30, 2010, 11:38 PM
I did have a double jointed snaffle on her, and it was better, but I just got so addicted to her being relaxed, happy, and responsive with this mullen mouth curb. If it was a matter of her not listening or being too strong, I would surely go back to a solid or double jointed snaffle, I do believe in the training scale, etc. But it's a matter of her mental comfort. She's an ultra sensitive horse and highly responsive. I wish I could get her more collected in a canter, but it's slow going because I don't want to rely on a curb bit for that- I don't want her to do it front to back. So I just keep plugging away at creating impulsion into a soft frame............

dressurpferd01
Oct. 1, 2010, 12:03 AM
Oh nevermind...

naturalequus
Oct. 1, 2010, 12:08 AM
The flash is not meant to prevent chewing and swallowing.

It is meant to provide a limitation on excessive motion of the horse's jaw and the bit, and thus encourage expectance of the bit.

If you've ever seen a horse go with it's mouth agape, tongue sticking out, or honestly evading the bit in any manor (not a comfort or physical issue), a flash can help that horse by creating an exceptable range of motion for the the jaw, tongue, and bit.

Think of it this way....

A horse that does not need a flash tends to move it's jaw, tongue and bit within the exact same parameters as the flash allows for.

That is why some horses go better in a flash.... :p:winkgrin::winkgrin:

Okay yes I do understand that, sorry - brain gap out on my part and I did not word it how I had intended :winkgrin: I definitely realise no noseband should be restricting chewing and licking and that you had not meant otherwise. I just meant that why is stabilization of the bit so important for some horses and not for others when you consider that they all should be licking and chewing?? I do not think that differences in sensitivity can account for the need of stabilization versus none, either, though I concede that perhaps some horses prefer the stabilization for their own reasons (but not as many as are regularly wearing flashes, drops, and figure-8's).

But I still do not understand how that cannot be accomplished without a flash. And if that be the case, then why use the flash? Is it not better to rely less on such aids? A prime example: a figure-8 was used on my boy on the track for the very same reasons you listed - he raced in a tongue-tie. It is not something I used at home however via making a few changes (developing him into a calmer individual, introducing him to relaxation, changing the bit, maintaining soft hands, working our way up the training scale, etc etc), he progressively stopped running around with his mouth agape as he evaded the bit. I suppose I could see how the flash or figure-8 or drop could be used to teach a horse what I taught my boy sans specialized noseband, however I suppose personally I just feel it better off to address the root issue (lack of relaxation) than to slap a noseband on it. The same result might ultimately occur however I like the sans noseband approach better.

And what about cranks??

naturalequus
Oct. 1, 2010, 12:09 AM
But what about when you transition to the double bridle. Then you can't have a ported bradoon with a ported curb. How does the horse lift the tongue then? To be honest, I had not thought about it being more difficult for the horse to swallow while in a collected frame.

At that point you could use something different that accomodates the double (I am not at all familiar with doubles to be honest). I am just saying I feel a port should be permitted for the rest of us not in doubles.

questomatic
Oct. 1, 2010, 12:16 AM
For what its worth, I was taught that the flash attachment was developed by jumpers to give the effect of a dropped noseband but still allowing for the use of a standing martingale. I also thought the use of figure-8s was to reduce pressure on the nostrils and to allow for more expansion, thus the reason they are used so frequently by eventers and some race trainers.

naturalequus
Oct. 1, 2010, 12:18 AM
I, for one, think that jointed snaffle bits are not the least severe most horse friendly bits. In fact, one of my horsey friends' dad calls them tongue pinchers. One of my horses cannot stand anything jointed, including a snaffle. She gets spooky, flighty, behind the bit, or running thru aids. And, no it's not my hands. The movement worries her and makes her anxious.. So right now we use a mullen mouth curb with a looser chin strap. She maintains a nice friendly steady contact and soft chewing. Her ears flop as she goes. And I like the curb too. I don't have to do any work. I have my pinkies brushing the pommel, and can do all directions with my seat and pelvis. and legs. I feel the bit I'm using just communicates with parts of her mouth that she trusts. I guess if you listen to a horse, they can tell you what bit they like, LOL

A single-jointed bit is going to apply both palate pressure and allow nutcracker action, so I agree with you completely. I typically either use double-jointeds or low-ported mouthpieces and love them.

Bogey2
Oct. 1, 2010, 06:22 AM
Oct. 1, 2010, 12:03 AM
dressurpferd01


Oh nevermind...

thanks, you give me trhe strength to do the same thing:lol:

princessfluffybritches
Oct. 1, 2010, 12:02 PM
thanks, you give me trhe strength to do the same thing:lol:

Oh, don't do that. I look forward to reading all your informative posts :D

Percheron X
Oct. 1, 2010, 07:22 PM
Okay yes I do understand that, sorry - brain gap out on my part and I did not word it how I had intended :winkgrin: I definitely realise no noseband should be restricting chewing and licking and that you had not meant otherwise. I just meant that why is stabilization of the bit so important for some horses and not for others when you consider that they all should be licking and chewing?? I do not think that differences in sensitivity can account for the need of stabilization versus none, either, though I concede that perhaps some horses prefer the stabilization for their own reasons (but not as many as are regularly wearing flashes, drops, and figure-8's).

But I still do not understand how that cannot be accomplished without a flash. And if that be the case, then why use the flash? Is it not better to rely less on such aids? A prime example: a figure-8 was used on my boy on the track for the very same reasons you listed - he raced in a tongue-tie. It is not something I used at home however via making a few changes (developing him into a calmer individual, introducing him to relaxation, changing the bit, maintaining soft hands, working our way up the training scale, etc etc), he progressively stopped running around with his mouth agape as he evaded the bit. I suppose I could see how the flash or figure-8 or drop could be used to teach a horse what I taught my boy sans specialized noseband, however I suppose personally I just feel it better off to address the root issue (lack of relaxation) than to slap a noseband on it. The same result might ultimately occur however I like the sans noseband approach better.

And what about cranks??

Your question is one that encompasses fundamental ideologies of ethics.

To understand any concepts involving "correctness", you must first have a reference point to weigh other options against.

When does a thing or an action become right or wrong? Was it right for ice age humans to remove horses from their natural way of life and begin to use them to perform work?

When a farmer uses herbicides and insecticides on a field to increase crop yield so as to feed the population, is it wrong that weeds and the insects may be harmed so that others may thrive?

Could it be that the beholder is biased to consider all that benefits him or her as good, and all that does not as bad?

In a world created of a finite quantity of mater, how can every single person and every single living thing have all that they may ever think they may ever need?

Between absolute indulgence and absolute altruism there exists a broad continuum of posable states of existence.

Therefore.... Some horses go in flash nose bands, and some do not.....

spirithorse
Oct. 1, 2010, 08:03 PM
"Therefore.... Some horses go in flash nose bands, and some do not....."

I would be willing to prove to you that no horse needs flash nose bands, etc....it is the rider that causes the such.
I have actually ridden several horses throughout the past years that their owners said the horses needed such equipment. I was able to school and ride the horses in such a manner they without it and the owner/riders learned something from an uneducated and uncredentialed plain old horseman.

Bogey2
Oct. 1, 2010, 08:14 PM
with or without the chains? Over the back or hollow?

naturalequus
Oct. 1, 2010, 08:15 PM
Same here, spirithorse, and I would be willing to bet the same. I honestly think it is more human than horse-necessary. That is not to say that a figure-8 (etc) cannot be used as a humane and effective training tool (though I find oftentimes it is not used as such), I just do not think a specific horse has to have it, that the same cannot be accomplished otherwise (ie. via the training scale). As I have stated, actually at least two of my own horses are prime examples (both OTTB's - I had forgotten a second one galloped in a figure-8, likely even a third...they don't with me). And they work over the back, btw. Not sure what is meant by chains, Bogey (maybe I am just having a brain fart?).

whitewolfe001
Oct. 1, 2010, 08:20 PM
I am definitely not into the tight nosebands, cranking, etc. I have never felt a horse going better when his mouth was strapped shut tightly. I want the horse to be comfortable, be able to chew the bit, and open his mouth wide enough to accept the occasional well-earned treat while bitted.

One time when riding a trainer's horse when she was away, I couldn't believe how tight her flash was. (It was clear what hole she used from the buckle mark.) I really had to use some MUSCLE to crank up the flash that tight (and I was in very good shape back then!) I did manage to buckle it at her normal hole, but couldn't in good conscience ride like that and lowered it two holes.

On the other hand, I do sometimes use a flash. Not super tight, though. I find that certain horses seem to respond to it well. I think sometimes it creates an additional level of stability that some horses seem to like when working. Other horses clearly don't like it at all, so it gets removed.

I let the horse decide. Just like finding a bit they work happily in. A bit that one horse loves, another will hate. They are individuals and have personal preferences. My last horse was small, I had no bits that fit him, and I consequently spent hundreds on various expensive Sprenger bits trying to find something he liked, only to find in the end he clearly preferred a $25 Happy Mouth.

Percheron X
Oct. 1, 2010, 08:32 PM
"Therefore.... Some horses go in flash nose bands, and some do not....."

I would be willing to prove to you that no horse needs flash nose bands, etc....it is the rider that causes the such.
I have actually ridden several horses throughout the past years that their owners said the horses needed such equipment. I was able to school and ride the horses in such a manner they without it and the owner/riders learned something from an uneducated and uncredentialed plain old horseman.

Perhaps no horse does "need" to go in a flash nose band.

Perhaps the rider may "need" the horse to go in a flash nose band.

"Needs" are dependent upon a set of beliefs that arise out of a set of experiences that may tend to reinforce the belief of what is needed.

The act of believing tends to create the need.

To examine what "is" rather than what is needed, will lead to a set of facts that may also become beliefs.

It is believed that Some horses go in flash nosebands, and some do not...

I have seen horses go in flash nosebands, so therefore I believe it is a fact that some horses do...

Percheron X
Oct. 1, 2010, 08:42 PM
Same here, spirithorse, and I would be willing to bet the same. I honestly think it is more human than horse-necessary. That is not to say that a figure-8 (etc) cannot be used as a humane and effective training tool (though I find oftentimes it is not used as such), I just do not think a specific horse has to have it, that the same cannot be accomplished otherwise (ie. via the training scale). As I have stated, actually at least two of my own horses are prime examples (both OTTB's - I had forgotten a second one galloped in a figure-8, likely even a third...they don't with me). And they work over the back, btw. Not sure what is meant by chains, Bogey (maybe I am just having a brain fart?).

If you have never believed that a horse may go better in a flash noseband, it is doubtful that it will ever be your experience that they do....

Percheron X
Oct. 1, 2010, 08:45 PM
I am definitely not into the tight nosebands, cranking, etc. I have never felt a horse going better when his mouth was strapped shut tightly. I want the horse to be comfortable, be able to chew the bit, and open his mouth wide enough to accept the occasional well-earned treat while bitted.

One time when riding a trainer's horse when she was away, I couldn't believe how tight her flash was. (It was clear what hole she used from the buckle mark.) I really had to use some MUSCLE to crank up the flash that tight (and I was in very good shape back then!) I did manage to buckle it at her normal hole, but couldn't in good conscience ride like that and lowered it two holes.

On the other hand, I do sometimes use a flash. Not super tight, though. I find that certain horses seem to respond to it well. I think sometimes it creates an additional level of stability that some horses seem to like when working. Other horses clearly don't like it at all, so it gets removed.

I let the horse decide. Just like finding a bit they work happily in. A bit that one horse loves, another will hate. They are individuals and have personal preferences. My last horse was small, I had no bits that fit him, and I consequently spent hundreds on various expensive Sprenger bits trying to find something he liked, only to find in the end he clearly preferred a $25 Happy Mouth.

This! :yes:

princessfluffybritches
Oct. 1, 2010, 08:50 PM
Your question is one that encompasses fundamental ideologies of ethics.

To understand any concepts involving "correctness", you must first have a reference point to weigh other options against.

When does a thing or an action become right or wrong? Was it right for ice age humans to remove horses from their natural way of life and begin to use them to perform work?

When a farmer uses herbicides and insecticides on a field to increase crop yield so as to feed the population, is it wrong that weeds and the insects may be harmed so that others may thrive?

Could it be that the beholder is biased to consider all that benefits him or her as good, and all that does not as bad?

In a world created of a finite quantity of mater, how can every single person and every single living thing have all that they may ever think they may ever need?

Between absolute indulgence and absolute altruism there exists a broad continuum of posable states of existence.

Therefore.... Some horses go in flash nose bands, and some do not.....


.......And I thought I was an armchair philosopher! It really makes you think.........

naturalequus
Oct. 1, 2010, 09:01 PM
Nope, not true Percheron x. I maintain an open mind. I do not doubt that a horse may go better in a flash, I just feel there are other (ETA: better) ways of achieving the same end goal.

Percheron X
Oct. 1, 2010, 09:07 PM
Nope, not true Percheron x. I maintain an open mind. I do not doubt that a horse may go better in a flash, I just feel there are other ways of achieving the same end goal.

Yes...

You have learnt much grasshopper... :lol::D

naturalequus
Oct. 1, 2010, 09:57 PM
No, that has always been my stance. That there are better ways of achieving the same goal (perhaps even resulting in a better result of said goal).

Percheron X
Oct. 1, 2010, 10:22 PM
No, that has always been my stance. That there are better ways of achieving the same goal (perhaps even resulting in a better result of said goal).

In all cases?

naturalequus
Oct. 1, 2010, 10:48 PM
I believe so. Particularly since I have dealt with extreme cases. However as I said, I always maintain an open mind. That is just MY position, you are entitled to yours.

Percheron X
Oct. 1, 2010, 11:02 PM
I believe so. Particularly since I have dealt with extreme cases. However as I said, I always maintain an open mind. That is just MY position, you are entitled to yours.

If on a two dimensional surface the goal were to travel from "point a" to "point b" traveling by the shortest possible distance....

Would the shortest distance be a straight line, or would there be a better way?

naturalequus
Oct. 1, 2010, 11:08 PM
The shortest distance would be a straight line. Clearly. However that does not mean it is the best way of travelling from Point A and Point B, that it is most beneficial for all involved, or that Point B will be the exact same Point B if it were travelled to differently.

Percheron X
Oct. 1, 2010, 11:48 PM
The shortest distance would be a straight line. Clearly. However that does not mean it is the best way of travelling from Point A and Point B, that it is most beneficial for all involved, or that Point B will be the exact same Point B if it were travelled to differently.

How can one ever know what is truly best for anyone but oneself?

naturalequus
Oct. 2, 2010, 12:50 AM
How can one ever know what is truly best for anyone but oneself?

Horses talk too.

Percheron X
Oct. 2, 2010, 02:17 PM
Horses talk too.

In your philosophy of horsemanship, is the primary objective the performance of the horses, or the "happiness" of the horses.

What if a horse that was an exceptionally talented performer, decided performing was not what made him happy?

Would you force him to perform anyway? Or would you find him another job that brought him more happiness?

Additionally... What are you thoughts on the increased risk of injury that some horses may be subjected to because they are asked to perform to the upper levels of their abilities?

naturalequus
Oct. 2, 2010, 04:11 PM
In your philosophy of horsemanship, is the primary objective the performance of the horses, or the "happiness" of the horses.

What if a horse that was an exceptionally talented performer, decided performing was not what made him happy?

Would you force him to perform anyway? Or would you find him another job that brought him more happiness?

Additionally... What are you thoughts on the increased risk of injury that some horses may be subjected to because they are asked to perform to the upper levels of their abilities?

I have yet to find a horse who didn't enjoy working in partnership regardless of 'performance'and when they do, they strive to please and excel. Said horse might not enjoy a particular discipline as much as another though (ie. say working cattle versus jumping, or dressage versus jumping or such). It is not usually about performing versus not performing...though of course the horses who are competitive and thrive on such are naturally going to excel at their sport. Those are the horses I pick for competition versus the ones who are content being second or who do not care about excelling as much (those are my pleasure horses, haha, or I put them in a job that they really have a passion for).

The horse has to enjoy the job they do, else it will affect their performance. So yes, I choose horses suitable to their jobs. However that said, they can still enjoy simply working in partnership with their rider, regardless of the discipline or performance. I don't think a horse should be forced to do what it does not enjoy however if you have a really good relationship with your horse they will enjoy spending time with you regardless. To be honest, having a horse enjoy its job is always one of my biggest worries. Luckily I seem to pick the right horses who do enjoy their jobs though - the Thoroughbred I am taking up as my jumper loves competition, speed, and anything athletic (which jumping all includes) so thus far he seems to love the job he is delving into. My new warmblood is bold and confident and I anticipate she will love what she was bred for too - jumping. That leaves my other horses no longer having to humour me jumping (etc) and instead doing what they enjoy most, whether it be just lounging along on a loose rein or working cattle.

Horses can be injured under any circumstances. I just lost a horse less than a month ago due to a severe pasture injury. Nothing being asked of him at the time and he was in the safest setting possible. However if we are asking more of them over and above just being horses, then it is our job to do our best to decrease the risk to the point where it is not much more risk to compete and be ridden than if they were just sitting in pasture or out wild in the hills.

This is all pretty different though than the topic at hand - shutting down communication. There are ways to work in partnership with a horse without shutting down communication, and to consider the horse's needs, regardless of what is being asked of the horse. Sometimes it just takes more time :winkgrin:

My philosphy is that it is a privilege to ride my horses, a privilege that they allow me on their backs, especially considering horses were not technically made to hold the weight of a rider. I fully respect them as individuals. So I consider my horses' wants and desires and take their best interests into account at all times. Force has NO place in my training, the horses are developed to be better (both emotionally and physically), I do everything possible to reduce any additional risks (which usually has more to do with conditioning and turnout), and I strive hard to develop a working partnership with them where they enjoy working with me as much as I enjoy working with them. I expect when I take everything off one of my horses that they still stick around and do as I ask, not because I told them to, but because they have the choice whether to or not to but want to.

I don't subscribe to the belief that if we are already riding the horse and asking of it things it would not normally do that we had might as well go all the way then and force it to perform (etc) and never consider its needs as an individual. However I don't think either that horses don't enjoy being and working with people, even when that involves being ridden (if done in a harmonious fashion).

naturalequus
Oct. 2, 2010, 04:30 PM
In short, the happiness of the horse is the primary goal regardless - I do not think it has to be either/or in regards to performance or happiness, or one versus the other. I also think it is more about the horse/rider partnership than about performance itself. A forced horse is never going to be a happy horse and is never going to be as successful a performer as if he were not forced.

Upper level horses compete for years and retire sound when the right precautions are taken so it is up to us to abide by those precautions and ensure the horse's best interests. There need be no major significant increased risk to compete if the horse is in appropriate condition, is trained in such a way that ensures career and health longevity, and one takes into account the horse's best interests in the current circumstances at all times.

Keeping the lines of communication open is possible irregardless and is one way to ensure the horse is happy and healthy and that its best interests are being served.

Percheron X
Oct. 2, 2010, 09:50 PM
In short, the happiness of the horse is the primary goal regardless - I do not think it has to be either/or in regards to performance or happiness, or one versus the other. I also think it is more about the horse/rider partnership than about performance itself. A forced horse is never going to be a happy horse and is never going to be as successful a performer as if he were not forced.

Upper level horses compete for years and retire sound when the right precautions are taken so it is up to us to abide by those precautions and ensure the horse's best interests. There need be no major significant increased risk to compete if the horse is in appropriate condition, is trained in such a way that ensures career and health longevity, and one takes into account the horse's best interests in the current circumstances at all times.

Keeping the lines of communication open is possible irregardless and is one way to ensure the horse is happy and healthy and that its best interests are being served.

I believe you have created a relationship with your horses that may be mutually beneficial.

In essence both you and your horses have created an environment to exist within, and you both adapted to that environment within the limits of your respective perceptions of what choices were available.

Your relationship is a reflection of your own nature and the nature of your horses.

You provide a set of choices for your horse, and your horse then reciprocates with a set of choices in return.

A relationship is a reciprocal sequence of an exchange of continuously modifying choices.

Communication is in essence, the transfer of what those available choices are.

Environments are realms of choices under the continuous influence of everything that exist within them.

Competition is the battle for the best choices.

naturalequus
Oct. 2, 2010, 10:15 PM
Precisely. Sometimes I have to work a little extra hard to earn a horse's respect and/or trust to the point where they want to have a partnership with me and exchange communication (any horses with 'baggage' and two of my warmbloods are such examples)...but like I said, that is why I treat it like a privilege. I earn the right to be up there and guide them. This is not to say I do not set boundaries within the partnership (ie. respect my space, etc), however I act accordingly to deserve such boundaries and respect any boundaries my horses establish as our partnership evolves.

Sometimes it can be difficult to balance competition and a horse's best interests - it is a constant struggle, particularly I assume at the upper levels, where everything is never black and white but grey.

There are at least two other riders at my barn who treat their horses the same way and have very similar partnerships with their horses (non-NH-based btw). One has even dropped reining, though she loves it, and has currently picked up hunters, since that is what her mare was bred for and seems to love. Her current conundrum is whether to sell her complex mare to a good home (the trouble is finding one) where she is a hunter while she (the rider) may pursue reining (part of the problem is her mare being so complex and sensitive and her, the rider, being unable to perform in reining correctly due to mental and physical obstacles, which impact her mare and cause her mare to not revel in reining as much as her rider does - she may need a less sensitive and more reining-schooled horse). The other is currently pursuing barrel racing with her gelding - an activity he seems to love, in partnership with her (and they actually do it the right way - no tiedowns and training that results in a horse with a screw loose). Her other horse is currently retired, though only 15, due to physical issues.

Communication and riding should always, in my opinion, be a two way street with a horse. You can still accomplish anything you want were you to force the horse (in my opinion, better than if you had forced the horse), just sometimes it takes a little longer to earn it.

princessfluffybritches
Oct. 2, 2010, 11:03 PM
My, you two have gotten sooo deep. But it is deep isn't it? People look for God all their lives. I don't look anymore. I've found my God. It's under my fingernails, dirty from enjoying some hard work outside. It's in my hands working the ground, getting dirty, playing in nature's mud puddle. It's sitting outside with my chickens in the morning with that first cup of coffee enjoying their discussion on how to spend the day.

It's walking on a loose rein outside watching the sun go down, hearing the birds saying goodnight. It's feeling my horse breathe underneath me. It's picking up the reins and asking her if she's there. It's in her response. It's there when I ask her "will you dance with me?" It's there when she says "yes, I will dance with you."

If you can immerse yourself into nature, dirty hands from grooming, wet boots from spraying the sweat off, smelling like fly spray, having helmet hair, cleaning out hooves and feeling comfortable with the smell.....if you can enjoy moments where you and your horse are so well balanced and the communication is as low as a whisper, your minds are one, then, you too have found God.

Percheron X
Oct. 3, 2010, 12:16 AM
My, you two have gotten sooo deep. But it is deep isn't it? People look for God all their lives. I don't look anymore. I've found my God. It's under my fingernails, dirty from enjoying some hard work outside. It's in my hands working the ground, getting dirty, playing in nature's mud puddle. It's sitting outside with my chickens in the morning with that first cup of coffee enjoying their discussion on how to spend the day.

It's walking on a loose rein outside watching the sun go down, hearing the birds saying goodnight. It's feeling my horse breathe underneath me. It's picking up the reins and asking her if she's there. It's in her response. It's there when I ask her "will you dance with me?" It's there when she says "yes, I will dance with you."

If you can immerse yourself into nature, dirty hands from grooming, wet boots from spraying the sweat off, smelling like fly spray, having helmet hair, cleaning out hooves and feeling comfortable with the smell.....if you can enjoy moments where you and your horse are so well balanced and the communication is as low as a whisper, your minds are one, then, you too have found God.

That was beautiful.

That brings up for me the notion to just live in the moment and just be, or to try and understand why moments exist at all.

I also enjoy all my every day horse moments. Nickers at feeding time and the sound of munching hay are to of my favorite things. :yes::)

spirithorse
Oct. 3, 2010, 12:16 AM
Wanna use modern horsemanship or "Sympathetic Horsemanship"(C)

Percheron X
Oct. 3, 2010, 12:53 AM
Precisely. Sometimes I have to work a little extra hard to earn a horse's respect and/or trust to the point where they want to have a partnership with me and exchange communication (any horses with 'baggage' and two of my warmbloods are such examples)...but like I said, that is why I treat it like a privilege. I earn the right to be up there and guide them. This is not to say I do not set boundaries within the partnership (ie. respect my space, etc), however I act accordingly to deserve such boundaries and respect any boundaries my horses establish as our partnership evolves.

Sometimes it can be difficult to balance competition and a horse's best interests - it is a constant struggle, particularly I assume at the upper levels, where everything is never black and white but grey.

There are at least two other riders at my barn who treat their horses the same way and have very similar partnerships with their horses (non-NH-based btw). One has even dropped reining, though she loves it, and has currently picked up hunters, since that is what her mare was bred for and seems to love. Her current conundrum is whether to sell her complex mare to a good home (the trouble is finding one) where she is a hunter while she (the rider) may pursue reining (part of the problem is her mare being so complex and sensitive and her, the rider, being unable to perform in reining correctly due to mental and physical obstacles, which impact her mare and cause her mare to not revel in reining as much as her rider does - she may need a less sensitive and more reining-schooled horse). The other is currently pursuing barrel racing with her gelding - an activity he seems to love, in partnership with her (and they actually do it the right way - no tiedowns and training that results in a horse with a screw loose). Her other horse is currently retired, though only 15, due to physical issues.

Communication and riding should always, in my opinion, be a two way street with a horse. You can still accomplish anything you want were you to force the horse (in my opinion, better than if you had forced the horse), just sometimes it takes a little longer to earn it.

I think all any of us can do is to try our best to accept who we are and try to make the world a better place in our own way.

There are many who think they need to be someone else before they can be loved. They sometimes try to involve others in their efforts to become who they think they need to be, and in the process they try to change others to be what they feel is perfect too.

There are some horses (and people) that get caught up in a persons attempt to become the "ideal self", but the problem is that the self they want to become is not who they are now, and to just "play the part", is not the same as being it.

Sometimes horses gets forced to become the vehicle of a persons ambitions.

The reality is that the person is treating the horse the exact same way that they are treating themselves.

Percheron X
Oct. 3, 2010, 12:55 AM
Wanna use modern horsemanship or "Sympathetic Horsemanship"(C)

I agree... The concepts go back to Xenophon.