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  1. #1
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    Default FLashes - who else does not like/use them?

    I find it very strange that nearly every dressage horse in a snaffle goes in a flash. I rarely use them, yes, on occasion, will use on a horse that really needs help keeping mouth shut, or crossing jaw. But I think it's a "crutch" somewhat like a stnading martingale can become a "crutch" to a hunter. Who else rarely uses a flash?



  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by shawneeAcres View Post
    I find it very strange that nearly every dressage horse in a snaffle goes in a flash. I rarely use them, yes, on occasion, will use on a horse that really needs help keeping mouth shut, or crossing jaw. But I think it's a "crutch" somewhat like a stnading martingale can become a "crutch" to a hunter. Who else rarely uses a flash?
    Yup, all them BNTs and Olympians out there. Usin' crutches, every one.

    Until, of course, the horse is in a double, then they miraculously throw away their crutches like they've been to the faith healer.
    "Against stupidity the gods themselves contend in vain" ~Friedrich Schiller



  3. #3
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    Sep. 21, 2007
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    Default

    Maybe you should go educate yourself about the *function* of tack in general. just sayin'.
    "Reite dein Pferd vorwärts und richte es gerade.” Gustav Steinbrecht



  4. #4
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by shawneeAcres View Post
    I find it very strange that nearly every dressage horse in a snaffle goes in a flash. I rarely use them, yes, on occasion, will use on a horse that really needs help keeping mouth shut, or crossing jaw. But I think it's a "crutch" somewhat like a stnading martingale can become a "crutch" to a hunter. Who else rarely uses a flash?
    I rarely use a flash noseband. I show dressage in a regulare noseband (not a fan of "crank jaw bands either) or on occasion a Dropped Noseband. I DO think to many trainers use them a piece of standardized equipment, much like the Standing Martingale on hunters. I see the flash as a peice of training equipment to be used to help the horse "get it" and then off it comes. But yes most top dressage trainers use a flash on horses in a snaffle, but at THOSE levels it's a whole different ball of wax so to speak and trainers are more likely to utilize ANY "tool" they can to make a competative rider better. Winning is very important to keeping one's training business open and running.



  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by InsideLeg2OutsideRein View Post
    Maybe you should go educate yourself about the *function* of tack in general. just sayin'.
    I am well aware of the function oftack, I haven't been riding/training horses for 25 years without having learned SOMETHING thank you! I see no reason for a flash on every horse! I ride 95% of horses without a flash and they all are perfectly happy to go quietly without it. I feel it is more of a "fad" than anything else, not being used properly as a "tool" by most riders. I have many "tools" in my barn, but I don't just automatically slap a flash on every horse. Most horses that I ahve that have been ridden in a flash, go just as well without one, so I see no reason for it.



  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by shawneeAcres View Post
    I am well aware of the function oftack, I haven't been riding/training horses for 25 years without having learned SOMETHING thank you! I see no reason for a flash on every horse! I ride 95% of horses without a flash and they all are perfectly happy to go quietly without it. I feel it is more of a "fad" than anything else, not being used properly as a "tool" by most riders. I have many "tools" in my barn, but I don't just automatically slap a flash on every horse. Most horses that I ahve that have been ridden in a flash, go just as well without one, so I see no reason for it.
    Do you use a seat belt when you drive?

    A flash is to be used as a preventative. Once the horse learns to evade the action of the bit by opening his mouth, it is virtually impossible to cure. All horses will attempt to find an easier way to do the work as we train them up the levels. Opening the mouth is an "evasion" that the horse uses to make things easier for himself. If your horse never tries to evade, you are probably not challenging him enough in the work.

    Once you "need" a flash, it is too late to use one--it won't solve the problem.
    Last edited by Eclectic Horseman; Mar. 1, 2011 at 03:22 PM.
    "Against stupidity the gods themselves contend in vain" ~Friedrich Schiller



  7. #7
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    Mar. 26, 2008
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    Default

    I don't use one because my pony is happier without one. I think it depends on the horse. I think a lot of people may automatically use them because nearly every single dressage bridle automatically comes with one now. It's frustrating trying to find a non-flash dressage bridle (well, at least in pony size!) if you don't like that "tab" left empty on the noseband!
    "Last time I picked your feet, you broke my toe!"



  8. #8
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    Jul. 20, 2004
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    Interesting. I never thought of using a flash as a "preventative."

    I tend to do my nosebands more loosely than most. One of my friends is of the opposite school of thought - that if you're going to bother to use one it should be tight.

    I know you can't compare horse and human anatomy, but I know that if I place my thumb on my chin and my index finger on my nose, and apply any amount of pressure, even very slight, I feel tension in my tempromandibular joint. The horse can be obediently keeping his mouth shut, but still holding tension in the jaw.

    I've only had one yap flapper and I wasn't able to fix the gaping mouth with any nosebands I tried (but once I fixed his saddle fit he was happy to go around with his trap shut again, so it wasn't so much an evasion as his way of telling me he wasn't comfortable). I guess it depends on the horse.

    FWIW, I think standing martingales are pretty useless. If they're adjusted tight enough that they restrict the horse from getting the head too high, the horse usually learns to brace against it and develops that lovely upside down neck muscling. If adjusted loosely, they really don't serve much purpose.



  9. #9
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    Mar. 11, 2010
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    I no longer use the flash part of my noseband. I haven't in a year. Did my mare need this tool before... Yes! In fact, I use to ride her in a crescent noseband. But now since I am with a new trainer and I am actually learning to ride the horse back to front and she is no longer just running around on the forehand she is able to go in a loosely tightened crank noseband with no flash. By loose, I mean three fingers easily fit under it. I prefer the crank nosebands because the have more padding than a regular... just because they are called crank doesn't mean they have to be extra tight. Do I think they are a fad... No...I don't. I think they are a tool that have a useful purpose in some cases. Do I think they are over used.... Yes, like MG said, because most dressage snaffle bridles come with them.



  10. #10
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    [QUOTE=Eclectic Horseman;5456503 If your horse never tries to evade, you are probably not challenging him enough in the work.]

    Seriously??

    Or is it - if your horse never tries to evade he is happy in his work - keeping in mind he is really progressing and being ridden toward lightness and schwung.

    Flashes or dropped nosebands in this horseman's barn are used when needed and only to correct a situation then removed.

    My motto a happy horse is a sound, hardworking, eager to please individual.... Just sayin



  11. #11
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    The properly adjusted flash as well as a drop noseband transfer rein pressure to the nose, away from the jaw. They also help keep the bit properly positioned in the horse's mouth. There are of course individual cases in which a horse's needs (injuries, specific conformation issues etc.) require different tack, but in general, flashes are not evil, not gadgets, just appropriate means in riding a horse properly.

    And there are some things one doesn't learn be doing.
    "Reite dein Pferd vorwärts und richte es gerade.” Gustav Steinbrecht



  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by belgianWBLuver View Post
    Eclectic Horseman: If your horse never tries to evade, you are probably not challenging him enough in the work.

    Seriously??

    Or is it - if your horse never tries to evade he is happy in his work - keeping in mind he is really progressing and being ridden toward lightness and schwung.

    Flashes or dropped nosebands in this horseman's barn are used when needed and only to correct a situation then removed.

    My motto a happy horse is a sound, hardworking, eager to please individual.... Just sayin
    Some people are perfectly happy remaining at Training and First Level forever. Horses have it easier, too. Whatever floats your boat. Just don't get all *I know better* than all the World Cup riders or the classical trainers for that matter. Even the sainted SRS use drop nosebands for the very same reasons.

    I mean get over yourself. Don't you think that these world class professional trainers know exactly what they are doing and why they are doing it? Do you really think that you are right and that they are all clueless or wrong? Puh-leeze.
    "Against stupidity the gods themselves contend in vain" ~Friedrich Schiller



  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eclectic Horseman View Post
    Some people are perfectly happy remaining at Training and First Level forever. Horses have it easier, too. Whatever floats your boat. Just don't get all *I know better* than all the World Cup riders or the classical trainers for that matter. Even the sainted SRS use drop nosebands for the very same reasons.

    I mean get over yourself. Don't you think that these world class professional trainers know exactly what they are doing and why they are doing it? Do you really think that you are right and that they are all clueless or wrong? Puh-leeze.
    Thank you for setting me straight...of course you are always right - Prozac anyone??



  14. #14
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    Jan. 31, 2003
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    Default

    I use them when i need them and dont when i dont. I dont buy into the preventative use at all.
    "Kindness is free" ~ Eurofoal
    ---
    The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances.



  15. #15
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    Jan. 16, 2007
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    Quote Originally Posted by InsideLeg2OutsideRein View Post
    The properly adjusted flash as well as a drop noseband transfer rein pressure to the nose, away from the jaw. They also help keep the bit properly positioned in the horse's mouth.
    I can see that they would stabilize the bit, both by holding the bit in place and preventing the horse from manipulating it.

    I'm less convinced that they transfer rein pressure to the nose. Is there a study that demonstrates this? (This is a completely serious question, please do not reply with snark.) I don't quite see the physics of how that would happen, but I'm open to having it explained to me.

    Personally, I don't use one because I want to know if my hands are creating a reason for the horse to want to open his mouth. This is for my use; I'm not against them in general but I feel they may obscure problems I am creating.



  16. #16
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    I apparently selectively purchase horses that are really into opening their mouths and/or trying to get their tongues over the bit (really), so I generally use one, but if I had a horse that would obediently keep its mouth shut (which has been true of a couple I have leased/ridden in lessons), I would be happy to ride without a flash.
    OTTBs rule, but spots are good too!



  17. #17
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    Oct. 13, 2006
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    Default depends on the horse

    I have found my 11 yr old Ottb, who likes to open his mouth to evade, goes much better in a drop noseband than a flash or standard noseband or fig 8. i don't like to crank it tight, but I feel he can still move his jaw alot better than a flash or fig 8 and it's enough to remind him to keep his mouth shut. I switch to that on a whim last year from a flash and he just loves it.

    My 6 year old WB mare is happy as a clam with a standard caveson.

    My trainer likes the "kiss" method, but feels, that it depends on the horse...and the rider ..for some equipment.
    I love my OTTB! I get my dressage test done faster!



  18. #18
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    My arab goes in one, my TB does not. Just depends on the horse.



  19. #19
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    My point with this thread was that it seems that nearly everyone "buys into" using a flash on a horse and really has no reason behind it. I agree that they have a use, but do not do buy into "preventative" use. I see people using them that have them TOTALLY incorrect. Too low, loo loose, WAY too tight etc and I'd bet 9 out of 10 of them can't give you a good "reason" for the use. As I see it, this is a TOOL to be used when NEEDED and I don't need them very often. THat is my point, glad to see others also see that (and that others just stand on their pedestal and look down on us!)



  20. #20
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    oops, am I on the UDBB. Sorry, I must have taken a wrong turn at the lights
    Honestly, what is with the holier than thou attitudes on the 'net?
    I find it very strange that nearly every dressage horse in a snaffle goes in a flash.
    I have some that do and some that don't and have all level of horses. Hell, I even rode my schoolmaster in a snaffle with a flash when I was learning dressage. I managed not to kill him. Then I moved to the double and learned how to use that. Again, I managed not to kill him and he in now 25 and can still do some of the moves with a snaffle and flash!
    "The stumbler doesn’t build her life by being better than others, but by being better than she used to be."
    David Brooks



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