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Great news re: Dressage-legal Myler bits

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  • Great news re: Dressage-legal Myler bits

    I just got some very exciting (to me!) news today from USEF regarding use of Myler snaffles for dressage competition. All Snaffles with rotating mouthpieces (Myler Level 1 and Level 2) bits are legal as of Feb. 1, 2012.

    I'm beyond excited because my horse adores (the previously taboo) Myler comfort snaffle with the narrow barrel (MB 01) but loathed the mouthpiece with the wider barrel (MB 02) which was previously our only dressage-legal Myler option.

    Anyway, I thought I'd spread the good word in case there were others in the same boat as my horse and me.

    Here it is straight from USEF:


    On Fri, Jan 20, 2012 at 10:00 AM, Hallye Griffin <HGriffin@usef.org> wrote:
    Dear Stefanie,
    Sorry for the delay in getting back to you. Our recently revised bit rules will become effective February 1st (so very soon!). In the new bit rules, we specifically state the Snaffles with rotating mouthpieces (Myler Level 1 and Level 2) bits are legal.
    I hope this is helpful.
    Please don’t hesitate to contact me if you have any further questions.
    Many thanks.
    Hallye

    Hallye Griffin
    Director of Dressage, National Programs
    United States Equestrian Federation, Inc.
    Last edited by duecavalle; Jan. 20, 2012, 10:24 PM.

  • #2
    Different strokes. I've tried the dressage legal Mylar on my youngster and he HATES it. I unearthed my old horse's Baucher, and youngster loves it. He chucked the Mylar bits around like he was trying to spit them out. Likes french-mouth Baucher. *shrug*

    Best to you however. How nice that you will be able to legally use what your horse likes. So frustrating when something appears to be a perfectly reasonable sort of bit (i.e. the Balkenhol version of the Baucher), but is not "dressage legal."

    Comment

    • Original Poster

      #3
      Originally posted by Sandy M View Post
      So frustrating when something appears to be a perfectly reasonable sort of bit (i.e. the Balkenhol version of the Baucher), but is not "dressage legal."
      Agreed. I used the previously non-legal snaffle last summer on a whim. He'd started snatching the bit and furiously wiping his mouth on his legs after workouts (was in a KK french link). Happened to have the Myler in my tack room, purchased years ago for a trail horse. The difference in him was nothing short of amazing. He was so quiet in his mouth and his whole demeanor changed. He was just so happy! I was crushed when I learned it wasn't "dressage legal" and started on a crusade for something to make him equally happy that was legal.

      It does take all kinds. My guy has a huge tongue, a fleshy mouth and a very low pallet. I have yet to find anything that he's as comfortable and happy in as the Myler and now I don't need to.

      Comment

      • Original Poster

        #4
        Originally posted by Sandy M View Post
        Different strokes. I've tried the dressage legal Mylar on my youngster and he HATES it.
        My horse hated that one (with the wide barrel) too. Go figure the narrow barrel makes that much of a difference to him!

        Comment


        • #5
          Does this rule specifically apply to the Myler bits only, or to any center revolving snaffle? I'm haven't seen the new wording, and will shoot USEF an email to verify unless someone on here has already done so. My young horse is very fidgety but loves his Herm Sprenger WH Ultra, and I know as of last year, they were only legal for FEI competitions.

          http://www.legacytack.com/pc/11470/B...affle+Bit.html

          Comment

          • Original Poster

            #6
            Originally posted by feuerkracher View Post
            Does this rule specifically apply to the Myler bits only, or to any center revolving snaffle?
            The current (1/5/12) rule book states:

            11. Snaffle with a rotating mouthpiece. (page DR27 here)

            and then shows an image of what looks like the Myler. It doesn't specifically mention Myler by name OR the size of the barrel (or whatever). It was the ambiguity that prompted me to contact USEF.

            Comment


            • #7
              Looks like it's still only legal for "high performance classes." Can someone correct me if I am interpreting the rulebook incorrectly?

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by feuerkracher View Post
                Does this rule specifically apply to the Myler bits only, or to any center revolving snaffle? I'm haven't seen the new wording, and will shoot USEF an email to verify unless someone on here has already done so. My young horse is very fidgety but loves his Herm Sprenger WH Ultra, and I know as of last year, they were only legal for FEI competitions.

                http://www.legacytack.com/pc/11470/B...affle+Bit.html
                I'm wondering this as well. I'll be calling them on Monday to find out.

                Comment

                • Original Poster

                  #9
                  Originally posted by feuerkracher View Post
                  Looks like it's still only legal for "high performance classes." Can someone correct me if I am interpreting the rulebook incorrectly?
                  Yes I think you might be. Check out item 15 on page DR26:

                  15. The provisions of DR121 apply to both competing and non-competing dressage horses from the time horses are admitted to the grounds which are designated for the Dressage Competition.
                  Figure 1. Bits Permitted in Dressage. All bits (in A and B below) must be smooth and with a solid surface. Twisted, wire and roller bits are prohibited. A bushing or coupling is permitted as the center link in a double jointed snaffle, however, the surface of the center piece must be solid with no moveable parts. The mouthpiece of a snaffle may be shaped in a slight curve, but ported snaffles are prohibited. A bridoon is defined as a snaffle bit used together with a curb bit to form a double bridle. Bits (including curb and/or bridoon bits of a double bridle) must be made of metal or rigid plastic and may be covered with rubber (in manufactured state); flexible rubber bits are not permitted, except as noted below, under A. The diameter of the snaffle or bridoon mouthpiece must be minimum 10 mm diameter at rings or cheeks of the mouthpiece (exception: for ponies, the diameter may be less than 10 mm). The diameter of the curb mouthpiece must be minimum 12 mm at the cheeks of the mouthpiece. Snaffles used in Young Horse classes must have a minimum diameter of 14 mm. Any bit combining any mouthpiece pictured in Figure 1A with any cheekpiece pictured in Figure 1A is permitted. Type of bit should not vary from those pic- tured below except where specified, and bits should be attached only as pictured in diagram. NOTE: FEI Level riders may warm up only in a double bridle (with both bit and/or bridoon made of metal or rigid plastic) or metal or rigid plastic snaffles pictured under B. In both cases,bits may be covered with rubber (in manufactured state) and and flexible rubber bits are not permitted. A cavesson, dropped, crossed or flash noseband is allowed when a snaffle bridle is used in warm-up or competition, except as prohibited for some tests.
                  A. PERMITTED SNAFFLES* (Must be used in Training-Second Level Tests. Optional in Third and Fourth Level Tests.)


                  It then goes on to show diagrams of the bits.

                  hope that helps!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    They show a photo of the WH Ultra in DR 26 #14, pertaining to the USEF High Performance Classes exclusively. Then that bit is not shown in DR 26 #15, and it states that "the surface of the center piece must be solid with no moveable parts." I'm thinking it's a no, but, NorCalDressage, if you hear back from USEF on Monday, please post their response so that I don't have to bother them with the same question.

                    Comment

                    • Original Poster

                      #11
                      Oh, you are right! I'm sorry I was looking at the diagrams on page 27. Then again this is the January version -- maybe the rules will be in your favor come February. Good luck!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I hope this applies to non Mylar brand bits. I found an off brand one in both D ring and full cheek a while back for about 20 bucks each. They aren't Mylar so are not excatly the same. Hmmm, the center rollers have copper inlay though...

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          ever the curious, i wonder how these "name brand" bits get approved..... i think it would be an interesting research project....

                          Comment

                          • Original Poster

                            #14
                            mbm I think i get what you are implying but I don't think it's just the Myler brand snaffles. Its any snaffle with a rotating mouthpiece.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              well, think about it: Sprenger bits are approved really fast.... other name brands maybe ,. maybe not....

                              so it makes one wonder...... and of course the rules don't name brands, but if a bit has a patent, then there wont be any imitations...

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Regardless of any potential politics behind HOW bits are getting approved...I think it is a fantastic step forward in horse welfare that alternative bit styles are being approved. Horses' mouths are all so different in conformation, not to mention the personal preferences our mounts may have!
                                ...

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by feuerkracher View Post
                                  Looks like it's still only legal for "high performance classes." Can someone correct me if I am interpreting the rulebook incorrectly?
                                  That is the current rule. You need to look on the USEF web site for the new version.

                                  Not restricted to "High Performance" anymore.

                                  I have cut and paste it into the attached file, with the chart. Pure text is
                                  *Snaffle bits must be smooth with a solid surface. Twisted and wire and roller bits are prohibited. A mouthpiece with more than one
                                  rolling part is prohibited. Bits may be made with a rubber or plastic or leather covering, but the bit may not be modified by adding latex or
                                  other material. Bits with mouthpieces made of synthetic material are permitted, provided that the contours of the bit conform to the
                                  contours of one of the bits pictured above. Flexible rubber or synthetic mouthpieces are permitted. A double jointed bit or snaffle with
                                  rotating mouthpiece may be shaped to allow tongue relief. The maximum height of the deviation is 30mm from the lower part of tongue
                                  side to the highest part of the deviation. The widest part of the deviation must be where the mouthpiece contacts the tongue and must
                                  have a minimum width of 30 mm. (See illustration below.) The mouthpiece of a jointed or unjointed snaffle may be shaped in a slight
                                  curve within the dimensions specified above, but other ported snaffles are prohibited. The mouthpiece of a snaffle may have up to two
                                  joints. A bushing or coupling is permitted as the center link in a double jointed snaffle, however, the surface of the center piece must be
                                  solid with no moveable parts, except as pictured above. The center link may be tilted in a different orientation from the mouthpiece but
                                  must have rounded edges. The diameter of the snaffle mouthpiece must be minimum 10 mm diameter at rings or cheeks of the
                                  mouthpiece (exception: for ponies, the diameter may be less than 10 mm). Any bit combining a mouthpiece with any cheekpiece pictured
                                  above is permitted. The type of bit should not vary from those pictured above except where specified, and bits should be attached only
                                  as pictured in diagram. A cavesson, dropped, crossed or flash noseband is allowed when a snaffle bridle is used in warmup or
                                  competition, except as prohibited for some tests.
                                  [* INSERT ILLUSTRATION showing how tongue-relief mouthpiece dimensions are measured.]
                                  Attached Files
                                  Janet

                                  chief feeder and mucker for Music, Spy, Belle and Tiara. Someone else is now feeding and mucking for Chief and Brain (both foxhunting now).

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Janet - are the new rules up on the USEF site yet? I looked at http://www.usef.org/documents/ruleBook/2012/08-DR.pdf
                                    and it doesn't look like the updated text you posted is included yet.

                                    Thanks for sharing the info. My guy loves his WH Ultra, and I'm excited to be able to use it.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Thank you for sharing Janet! My horse will be very happy about that change. Do you know when the new rules will be posted? They will go into effect on February 1st, right? That will make our show season much more enjoyable this year!

                                      Comment

                                      • Original Poster

                                        #20
                                        Janet, thanks so much for the clarification!

                                        And Brindisi -- I could not agree more.

                                        Comment

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