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  1. #21
    Join Date
    Oct. 21, 2009
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    Lookeba, OK
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    282

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    thank you! Fascinating....there are all sorts of gizmo's out there I'm not aware of. I love it....

    If my baby dragon doesn't grow out of her attitude by the time she's 4, this could prove very useful. :-)
    Katherine
    Proudly owned by 7 horses, 6 dogs, 3 cats and 1 Turkey
    www.piattfarms.com



  2. #22
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    Jun. 7, 2006
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    Quote Originally Posted by tua37516 View Post
    Speaking of neck stretchers, this question has been on my mind for a few weeks. I started working with a 9 yo TB who is still on the green side (for a friend). In a lesson, my trainer rigged it up differently-fastening it to the noseband, down through the bit, and to the girth. Experience proves this is helping him to learn to engage his hind end... any reason this would be preferable over the traditional over-the-poll rigging? Prior to this, he was unfocused, irritable, and tended to over flex in the head and shoulder without engaging behind (OTTB that he is). Also, about what length of time (or what would be the appropriate benchmark for progress) would it be appropriate to use this as a training tool?
    I have no idea regarding your initial questions as my answer to your last question is 0 minutes.



  3. #23
    Join Date
    Aug. 21, 2006
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    PA
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    Quote Originally Posted by meupatdoes View Post
    I have no idea regarding your initial questions as my answer to your last question is 0 minutes.
    I was hoping for slightly more constructive criticism.



  4. #24
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    Nov. 30, 2006
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    The Isle of Wight
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    I have seen the neck stretchers and chambons and the like used when lunging under tack for a horse that needs to build more of a topline and work from behind more.

    Personally, I have only ridden in a chambon and I have used that very infrequently. My horse got too low (even though it was very loose) and it kind of defeated the point.

    I do think it could help a horse build up a topline if it used when the horse is lunged under tack. I liken it to the Pessoa training system and other things that will encourage the horse to go correctly.

    Once the horse builds up the muscles and learns how to use it's hind end more, it will go more correctly. With that said, I wouldn't want myself or my horse to become dependent upon it when I'm riding.

    That's just my two cents though. I may get flamed, but that is just what I have seen/observed in the past.



  5. #25
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    Oct. 19, 2009
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    1,129

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    Quote Originally Posted by tua37516 View Post
    I was hoping for slightly more constructive criticism.
    I *think* she means that she would NOT be putting that set-up on a horse for any amount of time. 0 minutes. Zip. Not at all.

    From what I understand, it's putting pressure on the bit from underneath? So basically a tie from the horse's mouth to the girth? That is constant pressure on their mouth, especially if they don't "get it" and just go along with it. That's a good way to get your horse hard in the mouth (as in, not respond to any pressure on its mouth) or get your horse to constantly curl up behind the bit. Not a good idea.

    ETA: On the other hand, I used a polo wrap twice this week on my OTTB to function as sort of a stretchy standing martingale. Looped it around the girth to go in between the front legs and loop around the buckle part of the caveson. No pressure if he's relaxed and stretched, just a bit of that pressure on the caveson if he pulls his head way up. A little more forgiving than a standing martingale. That allows him to understand he can stretch down, but I wouldn't ever depend on that to make him activate his hind end. That's what my leg and "forward" are for...not a set-up on his head.



  6. #26
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    Jun. 7, 2006
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    Quote Originally Posted by tua37516 View Post
    I was hoping for slightly more constructive criticism.
    My constructive criticism is take dressage lessons and learn more effective ways to school your horse without gadgets.



  7. #27

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    Applying pressure on the poll releases endorphines. Endorphins are the body's natural production of endogenous morphine....which likely explains why your horse acts so relaxed while using this training aid, and is a totally different horse without it.

    The use of a chambon will produce the same effects, but has no "give" because its not elastic. The issue with these devices is that don't teach, they force. Though, they are good for helping to develop the muscles used to carry the head in this desired position. Ultimately, if you desire this head set without a training accessory, you will need to teach your horse to do it by listening to your aids.

    If you want to help your horse carry his head lower with your hands, you could try draw reins. The use of the neck stretcher and chambon is self reinforcing for the horse when he "gives". Draw reins will rely on the rider to positively reinforce the wanted behavior. So, be sure to "give" with your hands when he "gives" with his head and neck, and don't forget your legs aids.
    Last edited by Satin Filly; Apr. 5, 2012 at 07:27 PM.



  8. #28
    Join Date
    Nov. 9, 2004
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    Elizabethtown, KY
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    2,690

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    I had this occur with an OTTB I had once. Even if I lunged him in it first for a couple minutes before riding him he was always more relaxed. He was probably the hottest most reactive horse I've ever ridden and it made a world of difference for him. The endorphin theory makes sense.

    I disagree that it is strictly placebo and we ride differently with versus without. If one rides a horse every day and sometimes lunges w or wo a neck stretcher or rides with or without one, and starts to notice a pattern of behavior, there is often something to it. Certainly our own psychology contributes mightily to our horses, but at the time at least in my case I truly don't feel that it did. I rarely used it but it definitely helped that horse.

    Also, anyone who gets all high-horsey and preachy about "gadgets" and "learning to ride" really ought to be only riding their horses bareback and bridle less because as far as I can tell, a bit and reins and martigales etc are all different forms of gadgets used to control a horse. EVERYTHING we do and use on or with a horse has potential to cause harm in the wrong hands.

    And if anyone is using a neck stretcher that is "forcing" a horse to do something, or is applying constant pressure on the poll, you've got it waaaay too tight.
    Destiny is not a matter of chance, it is a matter of choice; it is not a thing to be waited for, it is a thing to be achieved. - William Jennings Bryan

    http://www.halcyon-hill.com



  9. #29
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    Sep. 11, 2011
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    Quote Originally Posted by buschkn View Post
    because as far as I can tell, a bit and reins and martigales etc are all different forms of gadgets used to control a horse.
    And therein lies the problem.



  10. #30
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    Jun. 7, 2006
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    Quote Originally Posted by buschkn View Post
    Also, anyone who gets all high-horsey and preachy about "gadgets" and "learning to ride" really ought to be only riding their horses bareback and bridle less because as far as I can tell, a bit and reins and martigales etc are all different forms of gadgets used to control a horse. EVERYTHING we do and use on or with a horse has potential to cause harm in the wrong hands.
    Yes, but being able to ride any horse you meet in the bare minimum is very empowering. The possibility is out there, you just have to be determined to go get it.

    Increased knowledge is the number one thing that reduces the chances that a rider will cause harm.



  11. #31
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    Aug. 21, 2006
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    PA
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    Once the horse builds up the muscles and learns how to use it's hind end more, it will go more correctly. With that said, I wouldn't want myself or my horse to become dependent upon it when I'm riding
    This is the precise reason I reached out to the COTH community for advice. Since I am riding a 9yo TB who I did not break myself, I am using this tactic to build up muscle while he starts learning to engage the hind end. This is my first time posting a question to the board, and quite frankly I am disappointed with some of the negative assumptions regarding my riding skill level and practices. I agree the goal is to move away from this "gadget" as soon as possible... which is why I reached out to the forum with my question in the first place. However, as the horse is older and can sometimes be on the engergetic or tempermental side, we have found this to be a method to easily "explain" what we would like from him that seems to be stressing him out the least.



  12. #32
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    Aug. 21, 2006
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    PA
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    Quote Originally Posted by meupatdoes View Post
    Yes, but being able to ride any horse you meet in the bare minimum is very empowering. The possibility is out there, you just have to be determined to go get it.

    Increased knowledge is the number one thing that reduces the chances that a rider will cause harm.
    And yes to this, too! Definitely the goal every time



  13. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by tua37516 View Post
    This is the precise reason I reached out to the COTH community for advice. Since I am riding a 9yo TB who I did not break myself, I am using this tactic to build up muscle while he starts learning to engage the hind end. This is my first time posting a question to the board, and quite frankly I am disappointed with some of the negative assumptions regarding my riding skill level and practices. I agree the goal is to move away from this "gadget" as soon as possible... which is why I reached out to the forum with my question in the first place. However, as the horse is older and can sometimes be on the engergetic or tempermental side, we have found this to be a method to easily "explain" what we would like from him that seems to be stressing him out the least.
    As the re-trainer of a gazillion ottbs over the years who have ranged in temperament from super dull to WOWZAREACTIVE!, I can tell you straight out that your development of this concept for him will come first and foremost from developing a lateral response to the leg, establishing an outside rein connection, and building progressively and systematically from there. It can happen 1,2,3 if you know how (or someone helps you) to set up the dominos.

    The bungee will only distract both you and him from what is really at the heart of it. It will take your horse 6 months to half-learn what he could get in 3 rides focusing on the heart of the matter with no equipment extras. As I mentioned, being able to do it without any artificial help is tremendously empowering.

    If you are anywhere near me I would be happy to help in person.



  14. #34
    Join Date
    Apr. 29, 2008
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    167

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    I am anti-gadet. Having said that, I will explain why.

    When I was 12 my parents bought me a 4yr Morgan gelding with 8 months of professional saddleseat training from a Saddlebred barn. I rode Morgans, but rode huntseat, so although I was not going to ride him saddleseat it isn't a big deal to go to huntseat in the Morgan world.

    Fast forward 1.5yrs later. I had my little Morgan at a decent h/j barn with a trainer that had no idea what saddleseat was. At one point she asked me if I intended to ride him saddleseat because I taught him to park out in hand for a treat.

    Needless to say I had no concept of engaging a horses hind end and asking for them to give at the poll and move TO the bit. The trainer put a chambon on him after a few months of watching us go around with his head straight in the air. I wasn't skilled enough to use draw reins and she felt the chambon was the easiest and safest way for a kid to help teach her horse to put his head down (when the kid had zero skills). She also had me take a lesson once a week on a school horse so she could better teach me feel on a horse that responded correctly to being asked to go to the bit.

    I sold that horse a year later as a dressage horse to another 12 year old girl.

    Now, after several years of training with an FEI dressage trainer I can ask just about any horse to give to the bit, lower their head and move forward to the bit. No gadgets required.

    So the reason I am anti gadget is because I came from having zero feel to being able to ride and change what was going on under me with out external help.

    However, I will say I think it is better to properly use a chambon, draw reins, stretchie or "gadget" then to fight with your horse. I would hope that you use this in hopes of becoming a better rider that could ride without a stretchie and achieve the same results if you chose too.


    And to better answer your question, I would second a couple things said:
    1) you feel more comfortable with it on your horse and your horse picks up on you being more relaxed.
    2) poll pressure does not release endorphins, but the position of the poll does. When the poll of a horse is lower than their natural eye level endorphins are released. Thus if your horse goes around with a lower headset they will be calmer



  15. #35
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    Sep. 11, 2011
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    Hey, its not like I am trying to judge and get all high and mighty. I have used a martingale and it was the biggest mistake I have made in all my years riding (trusted a trainer I shouldn't have)--set me back a month once i took it off regarding training connection.

    Release of tension through figures and suppling work can produce this same effect.



  16. #36
    Join Date
    Jun. 22, 2001
    Location
    Coatesville, Pa.
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    I put the stretchie on my 4 yr OTTB yesterday for the first time, to lunge only. And I know the goals I have for it, him, myself.

    It is:

    To help encourage him to re-form his upside down neck and non existent topline and allow his front end to lower as his hind end pushes.

    Only going to be used roughly 2x a week. (Those muscle groups are non existent and should be introduced slowly. I wouldn't want a gym nazi standing over me and making me do 30 mins of sit ups a day when I have done none previous)

    It is not:

    For when I ride him. He knows about outside rein, lateral work (beginnings anyway) and does yield to the bit. But some muscle development is best done (imho) without the riders weight and with a "guide" to help the correct muscles come in to place.

    A replacement for correct forward through the back contact to his mouth.



    As an aside... I found this site interesting....

    http://www.compassionatehorsetrainin...Stretcher.html


    ~Emily
    "Courage is not the absence of fear but rather the judgment that something is more important than fear. The brave may not live forever but the cautious do not live at all." ~2001 The Princess Diaries



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