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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar. 23, 2013

    Default Show bits?

    Hi everyone,

    I ride a huge 17.1hh TB who can get nervous at some of the scarier jumps and duck out, or he also likes to plow ahead. He's an awesome horse when he's in his zone, but he's in retraining after he lost his confidence with his old owner and developed a dirty stopping habit. He did the 1.40 jumpers, but now he's doing the 2'6 hunters. He's the kind of horse that you need to be firm with your leg and your hands, if you lose contact, he won't jump.

    Anyways, he's boarded at a barn that holds most of the shows in the area, so we school over the fully decorated jumps a lot, but he still has major issues with some of them. We're going to our first off property show soon, and I'm thinking about trying a bit with a bit more bite to it, just to school in a few times before we show, and then to have at the show grounds to see how he feels.

    Right now he goes in a french link D-ring, which he loves. He's very soft and super nice to flat in and jump around the school jumps, however, when we school alone in the ring with the show jumps, he can get a bit tanky and run off. I have pretty good half halts and light hands, but I just feel like I need to be able to back up my half halt with something more.

    Anyways, what do you guys think about trying him in a slow twist D-ring? I'd just really rather show up at the show with some backup, but I don't want to try a leverage bit quite yet. My instructor agrees with me, but before I buy one I want to know what you guys think?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb. 6, 2012
    Northern Cali


    I have a mare that can be quite light in her mouth but at times gets quite strong to the fences. I have tried just about ever bit. She was either too strong in it or backed off and would go up and down instead of forward. I put her in a straight bar plastic bit. It looks like a nathe but its a happy mouth. It backs her off but I can still take a hold of her mouth when I need too.

    I have never had much luck with slow twists but its worth giving a shot.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun. 8, 2012


    My TB has a soft mouth but will pull like crazy if she is nervous at the horse shows. I show her in a happy mouth Pelham short shank. She's a hunter so if I do have to pull I don't want her to invert and the Pelham helps with that. Mouthpiece is gentle so that doesn't piss her off. Leverage!!
    You don't scare me. I ride a MARE!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov. 28, 2012
    New York-> Ohio


    I have a slow twist D and I can't ride my horse in it, they work great for some horses but my guy will flip a sh*t if I touch him with anything other than a plain mouthpiece. I think pelhams are a great option because you can keep contact but add bit if you need it, just something to think about
    My Horse Show Photography/ Blog

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr. 6, 2006
    Northern Virginia


    My horse goes in a french link for hacking but I use a corkscrew dee when we jump.

    I also used to have a tank of a pony who went great in a Waterford dee. It was harder for her to grab and lean on that bit.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr. 2, 2011
    Westchester, NY


    If you think it will work well and your trainer agrees, go for it. You know your horse. Just ride in it once at home to try it out before you stick it on him at a show.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug. 3, 2010
    for now, Southern Pines, NC


    try it at home. You won't know what works till you try. I have an AO mare that goes in a happy mouth at home, but shows in a slow twist Dr Bristol. My big greenie schools in a KK/sprenger, but at shows uses a waterford or a short-shanked rubber pelham. Only way to find out the right combination for your horse is to experiment (with trainer's approval)
    A good man can make you feel sexy, strong, and able to take on the world.... oh, sorry.... that's does that...

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