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pippinpony
Mar. 11, 2012, 06:32 PM
Today, it was suggested to me by a reputable trainer(not my trainer), at an A circuit show, that I use a tack nose band.
:(
I was stunned. I really was to shocked to respond. I finally, quietly asked "Umm, aren't those illegal in the ring?" trying to be polite, as I greatly respected this person. I actually looked into training with her. Her barn was just a bit too serious for me, and I love the trainer I have now who doesn't push showing and perfection. This is how she knows me and my horse.

She says, "Oh, ya, but they can't stop you from schooling in them.":eek:
I nodded, and thankfully got called over by a friend to leave. I thanked her for her insite(I would have normally hung onto this trainers every word) and left.

Is this normal? My first thought was abuse:o! I have seen them before, and just could not even phantom putting that on my horse. He does have problems with landing after a line, dropping himself and running which makes lead changes quite difficult. But we're working on it, and with my trainers coaching and her actually riding him it's getting better! And he's FIVE:mad:. This other trainer knew this too.

Is this not as abusive as I thought? Is it just me that finds this practice unacceptable? Perhaps I am just out of it, and this is more commonly used then I relise?:(

FWI, I'm only curious as to what you all think, and if people really agree with this. Regardless, I will NOT be using a tack nose band, and will NOT be as keen to learn from this trainer anymore.:no:

SaturdayNightLive
Mar. 11, 2012, 06:39 PM
I don't think tack nosebands are illegal...unless I've missed something recent (entirely possible).

I don't find tack nosebands to be inherently abusive. I've never had cause to use one myself, but, used correctly, I can certainly see their purpose. Like most things, they can become abusive in the wrong hands.

It's up to you, as the rider and trainer, to decide which tools are used and to what effect.

CBoylen
Mar. 11, 2012, 06:43 PM
Not illegal. And quite effective for the problem you describe. Many "reputable" trainers use them when they might be helpful. It would be very difficult to use one in a way that would make it abusive.

AmmyByNature
Mar. 11, 2012, 06:47 PM
Nope. Not illegal.

FLeventer
Mar. 11, 2012, 06:50 PM
I personally prefer chain nosebands to tacks. Give the message without breaking the skin. I have used them before, but be careful. Throw on a standing and a chain noseband and when the horse throws his head up he gets smacked in the nose a little harder. I've seen a horse flip because of it. Some do not like it at all.

They have a place, but I'm not always a fan. I see them as a tool that can be useful, but are easily abused.

Summit Springs Farm
Mar. 11, 2012, 06:50 PM
Better than yanking on his mouth;)
But many good trainers use tack and or chain nosebands, not illegal.Many ponies go in tack nosebands also.

magnolia73
Mar. 11, 2012, 06:51 PM
How does it work? I don't quite understand how it is effective as a consistent pressure on the nose.

I have seen them before- it's not like there are a bunch of sharp tacks sticking out- they are like nubs... I can't imagine them being particularly abusive/painful/annoying otherwise they'd bother the horse and cause other issues.

ParadoxFarm
Mar. 11, 2012, 06:54 PM
Can someone explain how a tack nose and would help with a horse the lands like the OP posted? I'm not at all familiar with this type of noseband.

gumshoe
Mar. 11, 2012, 06:55 PM
Quite illegal for hunters in Canada.

FLeventer
Mar. 11, 2012, 06:57 PM
How does it work? I don't quite understand how it is effective as a consistent pressure on the nose.

I have seen them before- it's not like there are a bunch of sharp tacks sticking out- they are like nubs... I can't imagine them being particularly abusive/painful/annoying otherwise they'd bother the horse and cause other issues.

I've seen the nubs, but I've also seen some sharp ones. The duller ones are fine, but I knew a trainer that would sharpen them to points.

His advice was not to use them on a horse with a white nose so the blood shows. Made me sick.

pippinpony
Mar. 11, 2012, 06:59 PM
Quite illegal for hunters in Canada.
I'm Canadian, but down in the US for the winter circuits.

NOMIOMI1
Mar. 11, 2012, 06:59 PM
I worked for a BNT that used all kinds of garbage like this. It's what made me decide to move on from that world...

Freaking ride... Stop adding more and more gear. Everytime my friend who has an up and comer sends me pics of her mare she has more gear on her. She looks like a walking tack store I swear! (Dont worry I say this to her face too lol)

I moved on from AQHA because the twisteds were becoming sharp metal spirals and I was running out of people to ride with that didn't hobble horses and then bit up to the hobbles for hours... There were good people too.. But the bad stuff outweighed it too often.

The BNT had hunters with these huge ported mouthpieces that some of the horses were grinding down with their teeth so they would laugh about having to replace them after 6 months?

I didnt know what I didnt know back then oi yoy yoy...

No, its not everyone but it WAS everywhere that I looked.

Melissa.Van Doren
Mar. 11, 2012, 06:59 PM
Just this past Friday, I closely examined a beautifully made Edgewood tack noseband and wondered why anyone would want to use that on any horse. There's no way you could adjust it in a way that could be considered comfortable. The tacks were very sharp and there were plenty of them. Yuck.
:no:

AmmyByNature
Mar. 11, 2012, 07:14 PM
Not used with constant pressure. Adjusted so that the horse feels it when it hits the end of the martingale.

lauriep
Mar. 11, 2012, 07:22 PM
Very useful on certain horses. Not abusive. Horse punishes itself by hitting the end of the martingale. They learn not to do that. You don't use one and buckle it tightly to keep the mouth closed. Not for that.

lucyeq
Mar. 11, 2012, 07:31 PM
I think they are very useful when used properly. Key word: properly. A very good friend of mine (and excellent rider... if I were to say her name most of y'all would recognize it) used to use one on her hunter and it did wonders. I also know another lady who uses one on her green mare and it works very well. Not abusive at all.

MoonLadyIsis
Mar. 11, 2012, 07:34 PM
the noseband is kept adjusted so it is very loose. Anytime the horse engages the martingale the pressure is felt and then immediately released as soon as the horse gives. They are not meant to be used CRANKED on the horse's mouth. I have used one on one of my guys for schooling only. It was VERY loose. It did not make his nose bleed (he has a large white blaze) In fact, it barely rubbed any hairs wrong. I ONLY use it for certain planned schoolings. It CAN be a useful tool as long as it is used properly and not abused. This is the key, many people don't use tools properly and then they get a bad name. They are TOOLS, meant to assist you, not become a crutch you are dependent on.
End of rant..

MariaV
Mar. 11, 2012, 07:39 PM
It really isn't an abusive item, I work with a young horse who wears a chain noseband and a standing at the horse show because she has a tendency to lock her neck at the end of the martingale and drag when she's horseshow fresh. Now I wouldn't recommend cranking the martingale super tight and asking him to hit the end of it. But with the tack noseband on a little loose and the standing at the correct length the nose band just gives the horse a reminder to come back once they've reached the end of the appropriate length of the rein and standing. Now remember that horses don't feel the same way we do, do you lead your horse with a chainshank to get him on the trailer? Or for clipping? It's the same concept and as long as the noseband was made ethically and not super sharpened then it's not going to hurt them and I've never seen a horse wear through the skin on their nose. A lot of people forget how big and how strong they are, though we love them like our children, they are a lot tougher than we give them credit for. Maybe you could try a chain noseband and then make a judgement, it could be really helpful for you if you give it a chance.

pony4me
Mar. 11, 2012, 08:09 PM
Definitely not abusive when used correctly, and can be much better for the horse than a very tight martingale, or a rider that's trying to over-control a horse and ends up hitting him in the mouth time. after. time. until he or she has really created a problem.

The ones I've seen have little roundish nubs, or a piece of light chain, and the noseband is not tight. If the horse switches to auto-pilot before a jump and is not in synch with the rider, the nubs or chain will contact the nose.

We should always try to ride correctly, do lots of flatwork, have a horse that's sensible and listens, and not have a need for extra gadgets, but sometimes a training aid is needed. After the horse is going correctly, you should switch back to a regular noseband.

So your goal is to not need the thing. But in the interim, you may need it.

jetsmom
Mar. 11, 2012, 08:11 PM
How does it work? I don't quite understand how it is effective as a consistent pressure on the nose.

I have seen them before- it's not like there are a bunch of sharp tacks sticking out- they are like nubs... I can't imagine them being particularly abusive/painful/annoying otherwise they'd bother the horse and cause other issues.

It only comes into play if they throw their head up and hit the end of the martingale. The noseband is adjusted normally, so it isn't tightly poking them all the time.

alterhorse
Mar. 11, 2012, 10:16 PM
I'm familiar with them in sale barns where the objective is to sell horses as quickly as possibly. Yes they can be effective, but if used on certain sensitive horses, along with some of the other severe training devices or methods sometime used to train horses quickly, they can send the minds of certain horses over the edge.

I agree with you OP, and I think your instincts are correct. Not everyone uses such training devices because there are other ways of training, they just may take more time, or more talent to know what the horse needs to instill long term abilities that the horse will not resent.

IMO, sometimes such training methods create these show horses we sometimes see who much of the time have awesome ability, but then "explode" occasionally seemingly like some post traumatic stress disorder sufferer having a flashback.

If you've been around, you know exactly what I'm talking about....

axl
Mar. 12, 2012, 12:26 PM
He does have problems with landing after a line, dropping himself and running which makes lead changes quite difficult. But we're working on it, and with my trainers coaching and her actually riding him it's getting better! And he's FIVE

If he's only 5 and having these issues yet you're showing him in Florida, then I think the trainer can be forgiven for thinking you were open to quick-fix solutions.

overthemoon
Mar. 12, 2012, 01:03 PM
Yes they can be effective, but if used on certain sensitive horses, along with some of the other severe training devices or methods sometime used to train horses quickly, they can send the minds of certain horses over the edge.



That would fall under the term "using correctly" to me - if a horse was so sensitive that using a tack noseband would turn it upside down instead of correcting the problem, it ought not be used. Not every training tool is suitable for every horse, and an effective trainer who uses said tools correctly would recognize that.

alterhorse
Mar. 12, 2012, 02:23 PM
That would fall under the term "using correctly" to me - if a horse was so sensitive that using a tack noseband would turn it upside down instead of correcting the problem, it ought not be used. Not every training tool is suitable for every horse, and an effective trainer who uses said tools correctly would recognize that.

It depends entirely on who's assessing the training needs of the horse, and exactly what their qualifications are, what their failures have been, and what their motivations are, for making the choice.

The concept of "an effective trainer who uses said tools correctly" is a forward looking statement that assumes the trainer has the best interests of the horse as their absolute motivation in each and ever choice that they make.

I don't believe in holding any human being up on a pedestal as "perfect".

I also ask you to consider the concept of what state of mind a horse may be in for a trainer to think it requires a tack nose band.

Give a hypothetical or real example of a horse you feel the tack nose band is the proper tool for, and why any other training methods that focus on the use of a talented rider's ability to make corrections as the instrument of teaching, may not be the more appropriate choice for that given horse?

In other words what determines the choice between "rider training ability" and "mechanical training device".

overthemoon
Mar. 12, 2012, 02:50 PM
It depends entirely on who's assessing the training needs of the horse, and exactly what their qualifications are, what their failures have been, and what their motivations are, for making the choice.

The concept of "an effective trainer who uses said tools correctly" is a forward looking statement that assumes the trainer has the best interests of the horse as their absolute motivation in each and ever choice that they make.

I don't believe in holding any human being up on a pedestal as "perfect".

I also ask you to consider the concept of what state of mind a horse may be in for a trainer to think it requires a tack nose band.

Give a hypothetical or real example of a horse you feel the tack nose band is the proper tool for, and why any other training methods that focus on the use of a talented rider's ability to make corrections as the instrument of teaching, may not be the more appropriate choice for that given horse?

In other words what determines the choice between "rider training ability" and "mechanical training device".

I wouldn't hold a person to a perfect pedestal either, but that doesn't mean that there aren't trainers who are capable of making that judgement call. There are good trainers and there are bad trainers... it doesn't take a "perfect" trainer to recognize that some tools are great for some horses, and some aren't.

I also think you are wrong in assuming that anyone who uses a tack noseband things the horse REQUIRES it. As many people have pointed out, it's often a simpler, easier way for the horse to learn something - having a horse struggling against himself instead of struggling against you will almost always result in a shorter, less stressful battle.

I understand and support having different opinions, but I think it's a little close minded to say something is not and can never be useful, and a trainer who uses it is lacking in ability or does not have the horse's best interest in mind. If a horse has a behaviour that would make a tack noseband suitable, is it really better to spend 3 months fighting with him, or a week or two schooling him in a way that enables him to learn himself what the appropriate behaviour is?

alterhorse
Mar. 12, 2012, 03:57 PM
I wouldn't hold a person to a perfect pedestal either, but that doesn't mean that there aren't trainers who are capable of making that judgement call. There are good trainers and there are bad trainers... it doesn't take a "perfect" trainer to recognize that some tools are great for some horses, and some aren't.

I also think you are wrong in assuming that anyone who uses a tack noseband things the horse REQUIRES it. As many people have pointed out, it's often a simpler, easier way for the horse to learn something - having a horse struggling against himself instead of struggling against you will almost always result in a shorter, less stressful battle.

I understand and support having different opinions, but I think it's a little close minded to say something is not and can never be useful, and a trainer who uses it is lacking in ability or does not have the horse's best interest in mind. If a horse has a behaviour that would make a tack noseband suitable, is it really better to spend 3 months fighting with him, or a week or two schooling him in a way that enables him to learn himself what the appropriate behaviour is?

I think in general, "training devices" are over used.

I've worked with device intensive trainers, and with those who emphasize the riders ability as the ultimate training tool.

If anyone even considers fighting with a horse for 3 months, then I say they don't have a grasp of how to allow themselves to "evolve" as a trainer.

It's been a part of my learning journey as an equestrian to begin to realize that there are usually levels of underlying causality that we are unaware of when we work with certain horses who may seem to come up against some barrier during their training.

It takes self discipline to know when to back off from an issue and reproach it by revisiting the horses foundation of learning to look for those areas of equine misunderstandings that later manifest as other types of behavior.

However I do think a tack nose band may have an appropriate use for the purposes for "certain individuals".

My message here is that one should be aware that their own personal philosophy is aligned with the usage of a training device, and that they are not allowing the philosophy of anyone else to overrule their own.

The OP asked the question, and I'm attempting to provide the concept that a horse that is forced to comply without the "horse's advocate" comprehending the reason for the evasion, creates the potential for the cause of the issue to submerge and resurface later with the possibility of being expressed in other ways.

There are many layers to this subject, I recommend that no one take it lightly, and not consider it as a mater of being only black or white.

That's the opposite of closed mindedness, that's making the assumption that all horses are not the same, and may respond individually to training based on the horses own life experience.

Punkie
Mar. 12, 2012, 05:53 PM
I use one on my practice horse for the A/Os. He's a 1600 lb, 17.3 hh, 60" girth wearing beast of an Oldenburg with a monster stride and the propensity to be a freight train. He goes in a custom pelham from Jay and his chain noseband. We put it on two holes looser than his regular noseband with a standing martingale. He hits the bridle first and if he chooses to run through that, he then hits the noseband. For us, it's literally the difference between leaving a stride out of every line (which, mind you, does not actually look like we're leaving a stride out until we get a flowing one in a two stride...) and missing lead changes because my mack truck gets rolling out of a line and can't pick himself up in the corner, and getting the steps and changes. He has a big ole blaze, too...never seen it bloody, either. It's only ever used to show and it comes off for the hack.

alterhorse
Mar. 12, 2012, 08:24 PM
I use one on my practice horse for the A/Os. He's a 1600 lb, 17.3 hh, 60" girth wearing beast of an Oldenberg with a monster stride and the propensity to be a freight train. He goes in a custom pelham from jay and his chain noseband. We put it on two holes looser than his regular noseband with a standing martingale. He hits the bridle first and if he chooses to run through that, he then hits the noseband. For us, it's literally the difference between leaving a stride out of every line (which, mind you, does not actually look like we're leaving a stride out until we get a flowing one in a two stride...) and missing lead changes because my mack truck gets rolling out of a line and can't pick himself up in the corner, and getting the steps and changes. He has a big ole blaze, too...never seen it bloody, either. It's only ever used to show and it comes off for the hack.

But a chain noseband is not identical to the tack noseband. I'd liken the chain noseband to being more like the rawhide nose strap of a combination bit, but without any rider control over it's application.

For that matter have you tried a combination bit? Or a gag?

Such bits when ridden with a snaffle and curb reins give the rider an opportunity to ride/train by operating the severity of the device rather then relying on a self attenuating response by the horse to train itself.

I've ridden certain freight train like horses in severe bits in the past, and in some cases the horses were under veterinary management for pain issues (that seemed to manage the issue). Then I finally became aware that some horses had intermittent jolts of pain while jumping that were unpredictable, and even though it wasn't painful over every jump, the horse would anticipate the pain and want to get the ride over with as quickly as possible.

When horses panic they run, that's their nature. It's the trainers job to read their minds to find out why they're panicking.

Some horses can be born with hot temperaments, and the excitement of jumping can put them into a state of panic over their job. A trainer can attempt to mitigate the horses propensity to panic into a manageable state to create suitability for the trainers desired purpose for the horse.

I think the lesson I've learnt is that not all horses with the athleticism to preform have the disposition to preform the job that their trainer chooses for them.

How far will some trainers go to attempt to pound the proverbial round peg into a square hole. That's my point.

But if a chain noseband creates a "stable" frame of mind in the horse, and there are no attempts by the horse to evade in alternate ways, then perhaps that's a truly appropriate use of the device?

I think that's up to each of us to discover for ourselves.

Big_Grey_hunter
Mar. 12, 2012, 08:26 PM
alterhorse-a chain noseband is pretty much the same thing as a tack noseband, it's a small chain on the inside of the noseband. You can't use a combination bit or gag on a hunter.

PinkBoots
Mar. 12, 2012, 08:33 PM
They are not illegal and when used and ridden with properly, you should take it off and see no harm to the horse's nose.

alterhorse
Mar. 12, 2012, 08:49 PM
alterhorse-a chain noseband is pretty much the same thing as a tack noseband, it's a small chain on the inside of the noseband. You can't use a combination bit or gag on a hunter.

Lay your hand on a flat surface and have a friend alternately press the tack nose band, and then the chain nose band, into the back of your hand with equal force. Which one feels more severe against the back of your hand?

I agree with PinkBoots on the legality question.

(Pursuant to my laypersons interpretation of USEF HU125)

Punkie
Mar. 12, 2012, 09:49 PM
But a chain noseband is not identical to the tack noseband. I'd liken the chain noseband to being more like the rawhide nose strap of a combination bit, but without any rider control over it's application.

For that matter have you tried a combination bit? Or a gag?

Such bits when ridden with a snaffle and curb reins give the rider an opportunity to ride/train by operating the severity of the device rather then relying on a self attenuating response by the horse to train itself.

I've ridden certain freight train like horses in severe bits in the past, and in some cases the horses were under veterinary management for pain issues (that seemed to manage the issue). Then I finally became aware that some horses had intermittent jolts of pain while jumping that were unpredictable, and even though it wasn't painful over every jump, the horse would anticipate the pain and want to get the ride over with as quickly as possible.

When horses panic they run, that's their nature. It's the trainers job to read their minds to find out why they're panicking.

Some horses can be born with hot temperaments, and the excitement of jumping can put them into a state of panic over their job. A trainer can attempt to mitigate the horses propensity to panic into a manageable state to create suitability for the trainers desired purpose for the horse.

I think the lesson I've learnt is that not all horses with the athleticism to preform have the disposition to preform the job that their trainer chooses for them.

How far will some trainers go to attempt to pound the proverbial round peg into a square hole. That's my point.

But if a chain noseband creates a "stable" frame of mind in the horse, and there are no attempts by the horse to evade in alternate ways, then perhaps that's a truly appropriate use of the device?

I think that's up to each of us to discover for ourselves.

Perhaps I'm misreading your post, but my horse is quite rideable and we are quite successful at the 3'6" and I ride with some very competent trainers...his tack just happens to work very well for him. If he jumped as well as my primary A/O horse, he'd be unstoppable. Unfortunately, he takes the minimalistic approach to jumping and does not have the wow-factor my other horse has. Hence why he's the practice horse.

He's most certainly not in any pain; just like the rest of my horses, he see the chiro, the masseuse, has a custom fit saddle, has his teeth done every 6 months, and gets injections and regular maintenance.

And I don't think that there's anyone out there that knows my horse that would even THINK that him doing the A/O's is trying to pound the proverbial square peg into a round hole. Unless it's to the effect that he's not jumping high enough. He doesn't really get snappy or remotely attractive until 4 foot+. If I had the guts, I'd totally do him in the high performance hunters, but I'm just not that brave...not on any horse!

He goes in a slow twist loose ring gag at home. I'll do gymnastics with him in that bridle, but nothing more.

He's actually a very, very quiet horse, he's just massive. He's not a freight train in the sense of being fast, more in the sense of heaviness and power. He's incredibly long and though he's got excellent conformation, he carries his head and neck a bit low. So when you're trying to keep a natural 15+ foot stride (absolutely no exaggeration. I have gone in and left out a stride in every single line at 3'6" in a course with no in and out and I had NO idea I'd done it because it was so lovely and smooth and quiet) contained to 12' and have a horse that carries almost 1000 of his 1600 pounds on his front end, you're going to need a little help in the tack department. I'm 5'2" with a 27" inseam...the fact that I can even get my legs over my horse is a miracle in and of itself!

I'm not quite sure why you think that using a chain or a studded noseband (both of which I own and have tried...I've never found there to be a difference in response when used in the same manner. The chain noseband I have just happens to match his show bridle better, so that's the one he goes in) means that my horse - or any horse - is doing a job he should not be doing. Are there some people out there that overbit and use that in place of training? Sure. But is it fair to assume that everyone using anything that is not a snaffle is putting a bandage over a problem? Not in the least.

His custom bit is a high ported segunda pelham with smooth edges in which the mouthpiece can rotate 360 degrees. The cheek pieces are fixed. He LOVES this bit. He tracks up beautifully into the bridle but does not run past it, he stretches down into the bit and his mouth is very active and soft. Jay has said to us on more than one occasion that the combination of my horse and this bit has been one of his most successful fits. He does not throw his head up or get behind the vertical and he's not at put off when you take a feel of his mouth. But when he's getting heavy and low and his stride is getting bigger and bigger, it allows me to lift him up and collect him back without looking like I'm trying to wrangle him. For the very rare occasions where he's slow to respond to the bit, he hits the noseband and that's just the reminder he needs to back off.

No amount of training will change how my horse is built. And that goes for many horses out there. As to the suggestion the OP received from this trainer, I certainly don't think that the noseband is abusive, nor do I think it's an inherently bad suggestion. I've used them in conjunction with training horses that will grow up and strengthen out of the habit of landing and getting quick/heavy on the backside because it IS a self-correcting device. If the horse teaches itself to back off while you're giving it the physical tools to keep itself backed off and upright, why is that such a bad thing? It's a tool, just like anything else. And if it's used properly and with care, there is certainly nothing wrong with it.

To the OP: I wouldn't go writing off this trainer. It sounds like she's a professional that you otherwise admire. Her suggestion was not necessarily a bad one, and as someone else said, if you have your 5 year old in Florida for the winter, most people are going to assume that you are pretty serious about getting this horse around the ring *right now*. So using something like a tack noseband or a bit with extra leverage while you continue his training program isn't going to bring about the apocalypse. It's just another tool in the toolbox.

alterhorse
Mar. 12, 2012, 11:07 PM
Perhaps I'm misreading your post, but my horse is quite rideable and we are quite successful at the 3'6" and I ride with some very competent trainers...his tack just happens to work very well for him. If he jumped as well as my primary A/O horse, he'd be unstoppable. Unfortunately, he takes the minimalistic approach to jumping and does not have the wow-factor my other horse has. Hence why he's the practice horse.

He's most certainly not in any pain; just like the rest of my horses, he see the chiro, the masseuse, has a custom fit saddle, has his teeth done every 6 months, and gets injections and regular maintenance.

And I don't think that there's anyone out there that knows my horse that would even THINK that him doing the A/O's is trying to pound the proverbial square peg into a round hole. Unless it's to the effect that he's not jumping high enough. He doesn't really get snappy or remotely attractive until 4 foot+. If I had the guts, I'd totally do him in the high performance hunters, but I'm just not that brave...not on any horse!

He goes in a slow twist loose ring gag at home. I'll do gymnastics with him in that bridle, but nothing more.

He's actually a very, very quiet horse, he's just massive. He's not a freight train in the sense of being fast, more in the sense of heaviness and power. He's incredibly long and though he's got excellent conformation, he carries his head and neck a bit low. So when you're trying to keep a natural 15+ foot stride (absolutely no exaggeration. I have gone in and left out a stride in every single line at 3'6" in a course with no in and out and I had NO idea I'd done it because it was so lovely and smooth and quiet) contained to 12' and have a horse that carries almost 1000 of his 1600 pounds on his front end, you're going to need a little help in the tack department. I'm 5'2" with a 27" inseam...the fact that I can even get my legs over my horse is a miracle in and of itself!

I'm not quite sure why you think that using a chain or a studded noseband (both of which I own and have tried...I've never found there to be a difference in response when used in the same manner. The chain noseband I have just happens to match his show bridle better, so that's the one he goes in) means that my horse - or any horse - is doing a job he should not be doing. Are there some people out there that overbit and use that in place of training? Sure. But is it fair to assume that everyone using anything that is not a snaffle is putting a bandage over a problem? Not in the least.

His custom bit is a high ported segunda pelham with smooth edges in which the mouthpiece can rotate 360 degrees. The cheek pieces are fixed. He LOVES this bit. He tracks up beautifully into the bridle but does not run past it, he stretches down into the bit and his mouth is very active and soft. Jay has said to us on more than one occasion that the combination of my horse and this bit has been one of his most successful fits. He does not throw his head up or get behind the vertical and he's not at put off when you take a feel of his mouth. But when he's getting heavy and low and his stride is getting bigger and bigger, it allows me to lift him up and collect him back without looking like I'm trying to wrangle him. For the very rare occasions where he's slow to respond to the bit, he hits the noseband and that's just the reminder he needs to back off.

No amount of training will change how my horse is built. And that goes for many horses out there. As to the suggestion the OP received from this trainer, I certainly don't think that the noseband is abusive, nor do I think it's an inherently bad suggestion. I've used them in conjunction with training horses that will grow up and strengthen out of the habit of landing and getting quick/heavy on the backside because it IS a self-correcting device. If the horse teaches itself to back off while you're giving it the physical tools to keep itself backed off and upright, why is that such a bad thing? It's a tool, just like anything else. And if it's used properly and with care, there is certainly nothing wrong with it.

To the OP: I wouldn't go writing off this trainer. It sounds like she's a professional that you otherwise admire. Her suggestion was not necessarily a bad one, and as someone else said, if you have your 5 year old in Florida for the winter, most people are going to assume that you are pretty serious about getting this horse around the ring *right now*. So using something like a tack noseband or a bit with extra leverage while you continue his training program isn't going to bring about the apocalypse. It's just another tool in the toolbox.

Thank your for the complete story for your tack choice and details regarding your horse.

Please note that I'm not condemning the use of training aids, I'm making a general statement about being aware of the need to use them.

I think your post is an excellent example of a level of understanding relating to the use of specialized tools utilized for a specific purpose. I think the fact that you do school in the gag, creates a balanced use for these devices by combining there use with a training program that reinforces the horses understanding of the purpose of these implements and how he may respond correctly to achieve his reward of noninterference.

You understand that your body size as a rider requires the use of leverage to maintain your connection with a very large horse who's nature is to fall on his forehand.

To me this is a positive example of the level of understanding required for making appropriate tack choices for a specific purpose. It validates itself in that the horse has acclimated to it's tack, and it's job, and there are apparently no continuously changing negative behaviors from the horse that may be indicative of a deeper issue that has not been addressed.

Let's take you're example, and then compare that to the OP's question. Immediately one thing becomes apparent, the OP does not understand the need for using a tack noseband on her horse. She says: "I have seen them before, and just could not even phantom putting that on my horse."

Compare that with your detailed explanation of your understanding of why your horse goes in a chain noseband.

You even had the assistance of "several" professionals in developing your understanding of your horses needs, including a professional bit maker.

Big difference between you and the OP from my point of view.

Is that saying that the OP may not find usefulness in this trainers suggestions to her..... No....

I'm saying that in my experience, I've seen people jump on the "training aid" band wagon with practically zero research or guidance on what or how they are to use the device, or even if it truly is the appropriate device that the horse needs, rather than simple improving their riding ability!

It's not questioning the abilities of talented trainers with well intended motives. It's making a point about the responsibility of the owner/rider/trainer to be comfortable and confident that they are doing the right thing for their horse.

Unfortunately it's been my experience that such devices are sometimes used in ways that I feel, are inappropriate, and for the purpose of fixing issues quickly for the purpose of some persons short term goal.

Would you undergo serious surgery without first understanding why it's needed, or getting a second opinion first?

Why would anyone choose to use a serious training device on their horse without first pursuing the due diligence of discovering if it's really even necessary, or the risks involved in using it?

TKR
Mar. 12, 2012, 11:23 PM
Personally I *HATE* devices and gimmicks that take the "training" out of the equation and replaces it with some mechanical aid that may or may not cause pain according to how you perceive it. These are only substitutes and quick fixes that become permanent and "acceptable" over time. What's wrong with spending the time to figure out the horse and the issue and correcting by *TEACHING* what you want? Oh yes, it's all about *TIME* and those ribbons, the acclaim, the points, the ego, whatever. A true trainer will teach a horse by understanding the individual and figuring out how to get the idea across so everyone is on the same page. A device should only be employed a few times and discarded or it is just another requirement and a crutch. Devices like tacks on a sensitive nose are not in the realm of anything acceptable regardless. If you accept this, what's next? I really hate the idea of horses being left tied in such a way that they cannot get away from an uncomfortable position -- soooo wrong and should be reported and punished. If you see it -- it is your duty to report it. Maybe I'm too old school for the young crowd or show crazy, but when a horse is educated and happy you don't need that crap. Shortcuts to nowhere. JMHO
PennyG

alterhorse
Mar. 12, 2012, 11:35 PM
Personally I *HATE* devices and gimmicks that take the "training" out of the equation and replaces it with some mechanical aid that may or may not cause pain according to how you perceive it. These are only substitutes and quick fixes that become permanent and "acceptable" over time. What's wrong with spending the time to figure out the horse and the issue and correcting by *TEACHING* what you want? Oh yes, it's all about *TIME* and those ribbons, the acclaim, the points, the ego, whatever. A true trainer will teach a horse by understanding the individual and figuring out how to get the idea across so everyone is on the same page. A device should only be employed a few times and discarded or it is just another requirement and a crutch. Devices like tacks on a sensitive nose are not in the realm of anything acceptable regardless. If you accept this, what's next? I really hate the idea of horses being left tied in such a way that they cannot get away from an uncomfortable position -- soooo wrong and should be reported and punished. If you see it -- it is your duty to report it. Maybe I'm too old school for the young crowd or show crazy, but when a horse is educated and happy you don't need that crap. Shortcuts to nowhere. JMHO
PennyG

I'll tend to agree with you.

Accept in the case of Punkie's post where I see a chain nose band as less severe. To me that whole senerio seems similar in principle to a small child using a kimberwick in order to handle her bad pony... :D:winkgrin:

ETA: That is to say that it's not uncommon for certain riders to require more severe bits or devices, rather then to try to use pure muscle to keep a strong horse responsive to the aids.

I think as a general principle, a severe device used properly is only severe when the rider requires the assistance that the device provides.