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katie.c
Nov. 21, 2011, 06:58 PM
I recently had a discussion with someone who has a few horses in gag bits with only one rein (on the gag ring). I used to ride my old jumper in a gag, and I was taught that the bit should nearly always be used with a snaffle rein as well. Am I correct or was my trainer at the time just adamant about something that is semi-debatable?

Links to any legitimate information would be great, as I would like to explain my case without sounding like a know-it-all. :)

Thanks!

Herbie19
Nov. 21, 2011, 07:02 PM
One of my now retired horses jump schooled in a loose ring gag with one set of reins only and lived to tell about it. He showed in a rubber pelham. To each his own I guess.

GingerJumper
Nov. 21, 2011, 07:03 PM
First, I'm not really sure why you need to explain anything to this person at all... it is, after all, their decision and their business as far as what goes in their horses' mouths. Unless you're their trainer, then it really isn't your business. JMHO, take it how you will.

As far as the actual question goes, I've seen both. I prefer to use two reins on any bit that offers a snaffle option and a leverage option so I have more options, but not everyone feels that way. I don't think there are any rules regarding it except in PC for C1's and up. I think it comes down to the horse, the rider, and the trainer.

who22
Nov. 21, 2011, 07:03 PM
Yep, they should be ridden with 2 sets of reins. The theory is that should your bottom rein (your "gag" rein) snap, then you will still have control of your horse via the snaffle rein. not sure if that makes much sense or not.

WNT
Nov. 21, 2011, 07:07 PM
I find that my horse steers much better when I also use a snaffle rein on a gag. Plus, if he is being good, I can back off the gag rein and use the snaffle rein until he needs a reminder from the gag rein.

CBoylen
Nov. 21, 2011, 07:16 PM
Depends on the horse, the rider, and also on the actual mouthpiece of the gag in question. Many use one rein; many use two, and many have done both under different circumstances. No need to debate it.

katie.c
Nov. 21, 2011, 07:22 PM
Easy Ginger! That's why I was asking opinions. It's not like I'm going to go change her tack while she's not looking. We are friends and were having a collegial discussion and I'm just wondering if other people out there were taught the same thing, I wasn't trying to sound like everyone should agree or do the same thing. Sorry if it came out that way!

GingerJumper
Nov. 21, 2011, 07:25 PM
Easy Ginger! That's why I was asking opinions. It's not like I'm going to go change her tack while she's not looking. We are friends and were having a collegial discussion and I'm just wondering if other people out there were taught the same thing, I wasn't trying to sound like everyone should agree or do the same thing. Sorry if it came out that way!

That sounds much more reasonable. The way I read your post made it sound, to me, as though you were convinced this person was quite wrong and you wanted proof that you were right. I must not be reading right today, apologies :)

katie.c
Nov. 21, 2011, 07:36 PM
That sounds much more reasonable. The way I read your post made it sound, to me, as though you were convinced this person was quite wrong and you wanted proof that you were right. I must not be reading right today, apologies :)

Ah, no worries! I can see how it came off that way. I was trying to say that IF what I was taught is in a fact a widely held opinion, then I would love some concrete information as to why, rather than just relying on "but my old trainer said..." Sorry for the confusion.

CHT
Nov. 21, 2011, 07:36 PM
if I was riding a horse that liked to have some contact on the mouth, and just needed the gag for reinforcement as needed, then I would want two reins, as I would not want to keep a hold on the gag rein.

On the other hand, I have one horse in the barn right now who wears a gag at times; he rides mostly off leg to turn, and doesn't really like to he held but gets a little rushy/heavy at times, so to keep it simple for his rider, we just use the gag rein, and it works fine for him.