Does anyone have tips for trying a Hackamore? My mare has always been bitted with a loose ring snaffle but has been having some tongue issues so I want to try the Hackamore. I have good hands so my trainer says so I should be ok but I'm nervous about it. How far up/down her nose should it sit and how much play should there be in the side pieces, they seem to sit right next to her mouth rather than back at an angle when I tried it on tonight? Any help is appreciated.....I don't want to hurt her.
Try your hackamore in a small area. Steering and brakes are a bit different than what you're used to and not having too much room to roam is good while you get used to things. Use an opening rein to "lead" the way at first.
It should be adjusted so the piece on top of the nose sits at least a few inches above where you can feel the end of the cartilage above/between your horse's nostrils. Adjust the curb strap so you can easily fit a couple fingers between it and the underside of the jaw.
I rode in the hackamore today and had a different horse. She only took a few minutes to get used to it and was much softer and rounder than usual and no fighting. I thought I would just walk and trot, I was a bit nervous about it, but she was so good we even jumped. Off to my trainers barn for a lesson tomorrow so we'll see if it continues. Thanks for the help!