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Loop of reins driving me crazy - HELP!!

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  • #21
    Originally posted by Blugal View Post
    What's worse than the bight getting caught in the saddle pad is having it caught in your stirrups when you are jumping!
    Try sticking your right foot through them when riding side saddle.

    OP, try holding the bight, right at the buckle, with the pinky of one hand or the other.
    ::Sometimes you have to burn a few bridges to keep the crazies from following you::

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    • Original Poster

      #22
      Originally posted by SmartAlex View Post
      Try sticking your right foot through them when riding side saddle.

      OP, try holding the bight, right at the buckle, with the pinky of one hand or the other.
      Will do, i'll try that tomorrow night and report back!!
      www.jlsporthorsesales.net

      Comment


      • #23
        I have had this problem on occasion and can attest its a short arm/rein lenght/horse confo combo thing.

        I primarily drive now, and when driving you have a quite long bight which you must keep control of at all times as it can become wound around your foot quite easily or the reins suddenly snapped completely out of your hands by a tail swishing at flies.

        Many drivers tuck the bight under their thigh, which is not suitable for you, but what others do, myself included, is tie a small loop of VERY FRAGILE material around the buckle and then hook the loop over your pinky just to the first knuckle. Wearing a glove, the loop is almost undetectable and doesn't slide off. I use el cheapador "leather-look" lacing that breaks if you even look funny at it.

        While coming out of a cart/carriage is *supposed* to be far less likely than coming off a horse, its actually quite easy to have happen and is a very real concern. So loop fragility is a top priority so we don't add injury to insult with a broken pinky while we watch our driverless carriage go galloping off into the sunset .

        If I had this problem currently riding I would likely give this a go.

        Or perhaps an equally fragile loop with a discreet clip or buckle to snap to your dee? Again take into strong consideration the ramifications of having reins affixed to saddle.
        Being terrible at something is the first step to being truly great at it. Struggle is the evidence of progress.

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        • Original Poster

          #24
          Originally posted by buck22 View Post
          I have had this problem on occasion and can attest its a short arm/rein lenght/horse confo combo thing.

          I primarily drive now, and when driving you have a quite long bight which you must keep control of at all times as it can become wound around your foot quite easily or the reins suddenly snapped completely out of your hands by a tail swishing at flies.

          Many drivers tuck the bight under their thigh, which is not suitable for you, but what others do, myself included, is tie a small loop of VERY FRAGILE material around the buckle and then hook the loop over your pinky just to the first knuckle. Wearing a glove, the loop is almost undetectable and doesn't slide off. I use el cheapador "leather-look" lacing that breaks if you even look funny at it.

          While coming out of a cart/carriage is *supposed* to be far less likely than coming off a horse, its actually quite easy to have happen and is a very real concern. So loop fragility is a top priority so we don't add injury to insult with a broken pinky while we watch our driverless carriage go galloping off into the sunset .

          If I had this problem currently riding I would likely give this a go.

          Or perhaps an equally fragile loop with a discreet clip or buckle to snap to your dee? Again take into strong consideration the ramifications of having reins affixed to saddle.
          I mgiht try this also if I find holding the bight is too cumbersome... i could tie a little brown elastic around the buckle clip of the reins and tie to one "D" - those little flimsy elastics break super easily so I would not be worried.

          Thanks for all the suggestions everyone, glad to hear i'm not the only one this has happened to.
          www.jlsporthorsesales.net

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          • #25
            I think a dressage pad that is cut more straight-down in the front will help a lot. That looks like an all-purpose pad, which projects more forward so it can be used under a jumping saddle.

            You also don't have to put both billets in the lower loop of the pad. I only put the rear billet through, and it allows the pad to be set farther back on the horse.

            I also cut off the top loop on the pad, because I have a monoflap saddle and there is nothing to connect it to. So if setting the pad farther back means you cannot connect that loop, then just cut it off.

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            • #26
              Originally posted by Blugal View Post
              It's not just you. I am short-armed and I have this problem with certain reins/saddle/horse combos. Depends on the length of the horse's neck too.
              It happens to me, too, and it's really, really annoying. I seem to get the bight of my reins pinched under the front of my saddle flap and pad, which then pins them in place. And I'm already using cob length reins, so it's not like they're ridiculously long or anything.

              Recently I got a new saddle, though (for other reasons - old one fit my mare, but not me) and I'm curious to see if that makes a difference. So far I haven't had it happen, but it seems to be more of a problem when I'm having a lesson, which I haven't done in the new saddle yet.

              My draft gelding had a enormous head and a not-particularly-long neck, so the reins that came with his bridle were insanely long, and I had to knot them to keep me from getting them wrapped around my foot. Which I agree is even worse than having them wedged under your saddle pad.
              "In order to really enjoy a dog, one doesn’t merely train him to be semi-human. The point of it is to open oneself to the possibility of becoming part dog."
              -Edward Hoagland

              Comment


              • #27
                I'd get the reins shortened. My tiny little Arab has to have short reins or they get caught all kinds of places. Like under my foot when he's collected and there is almost no rein between his mouth and my hand.

                Comment


                • #28
                  I bought my reins from Jerry's Harness. They started as 56 inch reins (the shortest he sells), but those were ridiculously long for a little Morgan mare and a short-armed rider... The bight fell to her elbow! Not to mention that if they went over her head, she'd definitely step on them as they were not just touching the ground, but made a big loop on the ground. I had them shortened by a shoe repair guy by 10 inches (5 inches on each rein) and we now have a sort-of reasonable bight length.

                  That's probably the thing to do...
                  You have to have experiences to gain experience.

                  1998 Morgan mare Mythic Feronia "More Valley Girl Than Girl Scout!"

                  Comment


                  • #29
                    Hm. I have this problem too -- also on a Morgan. But I've always attributed it to having long arms and a little horse (it's late, so I'm not wrapping my head around the geometry of short arms leading to a bigger bight).

                    Anyone have any recommendations for good-quality leather pony/cob sized reins?
                    Evolutionary science by day; keeping a certain red mare from winning a Darwin award the rest of the time!

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                    • #30
                      IF this distresses you so much, then rather than have the bight of the reins go under the hand on the off side, let it go over the top. That would prevent what you say is happening. (Or could it be that your hands are too low???) Or regularly do a small uberstreichen offering....you should anyway...but this would help your problem.
                      I.D.E.A. yoda

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                      • #31
                        rather than have the bight of the reins go under the hand on the off side, let it go over the top
                        Someone finally said it! That's how we were taught and first thing I noticed in the photo.

                        Comment


                        • #32
                          Missed the pix. In that pix the hands (esp the inside) is too low/wide even if the rider is attempting to ask forward/down/out chewing the reins from the hand exercise. Keep hands LEVEL (and more similar to outside one...NOT wider unless is up/open/going straight ahead...that action (of the inside rein is causing the horse to not open the throat latch). IF the horse was up/open/active (with straight line to mouth), the loop would not be where it is. Also in the pix the rider is leaning forward/dropping chest and hands (horse is also dropping chest) so horse is not seeking fdo but closing the throat latch.

                          That said I ride with very long (66") reins to allow ( because of a very long neck neck on the horse) the horse to really relax in free walk. That said I have short legs, and when the horse is collected the bight is very long. (Doesnt bother male riders with long legs). The use of uberstreichen helps keep that from happening for me...and it should be part of your riding anyway!
                          I.D.E.A. yoda

                          Comment


                          • #33
                            Originally posted by ASBJumper View Post
                            Hmmm... you may have hit on something there... my horse is very refined & my saddle is little, so I have actually been avoiding buying big, square Dressage pads because i thought they would look ridiculous on him... maybe this is happening because i'm using thick close contact pads under my Dressage saddle???
                            I think the close contact saddle pad is the problem. I ride in short-flap dressage saddles as well and have used cc saddle pads, and they do stick out too far in front. I highly recommend these pads - it's the right size for a small saddle and they wear really well (and the price is right!) - although I see they are sold out of white:
                            http://www.vtosaddlery.com/Merchant2...Category_Code=
                            "You become responsible, forever, for what you have tamed." - The Little Prince

                            Comment


                            • #34
                              Ugh I used to have the problem too and it's so annoying. It only ever happened with my horseware handy saddle pads since the pad would always slip forward when I rode, giving me a few inches of pad which stuck out from the front of my saddle, which my reins would then get caught under. I threw that pad away and now when I put my saddle pad on I make sure there's only an inch or two of it that sticks out the front. From the photo I saw that you posted, the pad looks huge on your horse so I would guess that's the problem. Try a smaller pad someone else suggested here and see if it helps.

                              Comment


                              • #35
                                Originally posted by atlatl View Post
                                Since the same thing happened with your friend's reins, but you don't mention that she has the same problem, could it be you are carrying your hands too low?
                                This, I had the same issue, some rides it seemed worse than others.
                                Then one clinic I was told my hands are often too low, when I keep my hands at bit higher the reins don't creep under the pad.

                                Took some getting used to to keep my hands that high, it felt awkward for a while. I did some serious looking at high level pics and noted where their hands were to convince my brain the positioning was correct.

                                Comment


                                • #36
                                  Originally posted by Equibrit View Post
                                  Knot them if it bothers you so much.
                                  Originally posted by ASBJumper View Post
                                  That would make stretchy work pretty durn difficult, but thanks for the oh-so-serious suggestion anyway.
                                  Knotting them at or near the buckle would have the same effect as using shorter reins, a suggestion others have made that didn't get a "cute" little winky (translate: snarky) response.
                                  Donald Trump - proven liar, cheat, traitor and sexual predator! Hillary Clinton won in 2016, but we have all lost.

                                  Comment


                                  • #37
                                    Although the pix shows that the reins do not need knotting, one cannot allow fdo by going to light seat and following the bascule rather than by slipping the reins (and the horse should rarely go below horizontal for most riders because the balance is so easily lost onto the forehand).
                                    I.D.E.A. yoda

                                    Comment


                                    • #38
                                      Hmm I looked at your picture and I may have the solution to your problem but I just might have difficulty explaining this.

                                      In your picture you have the bight of the reins falling to the right hand side (which is what I do too) BUT the bight is under your right rein. After mounting, spread your hands slightly and flip the bight OVER the right hand rein. This tends to keep the bight up and out of the way of saddle/pad and stops it from getting caught.

                                      I hope I made this clear and that it works for you.

                                      Comment


                                      • #39
                                        Originally posted by kaluha2 View Post
                                        Hmm I looked at your picture and I may have the solution to your problem but I just might have difficulty explaining this.

                                        In your picture you have the bight of the reins falling to the right hand side (which is what I do too) BUT the bight is under your right rein. After mounting, spread your hands slightly and flip the bight OVER the right hand rein. This tends to keep the bight up and out of the way of saddle/pad and stops it from getting caught.
                                        I don't know if it fixed the OP's problem, but it may have fixed mine

                                        I do the same thing - ride with the bight under my reins which is how I learned. Interestingly, I've been doing it that way for more than 20 years with horses of all shapes and sizes, and a wide variety of saddles and pads, and I've never had a problem until the last couple of years, and only on one of my horses.

                                        My reins got stuck once this morning, and I flipped them over the top instead. Felt very awkward at first, but I got used to it pretty quickly, and no more sticking.

                                        Who says people on the internet can't fix your riding?
                                        "In order to really enjoy a dog, one doesn’t merely train him to be semi-human. The point of it is to open oneself to the possibility of becoming part dog."
                                        -Edward Hoagland

                                        Comment


                                        • #40
                                          Oh haha that's so funny I never thought I'd be able to explain that with any clarity to anyone and actually have them try it and fix the problem. I can't take credit for this one though because this I learned riding with Bodo Hagan many years ago.

                                          Anyway, this is the little trick he taught me about the bight of the reins and I have always just ridden this way and I'm glad that he is still passing on his good stuff to the next generation of riders.

                                          I have a couple of pictures of him riding various horses on my horse room walls and there it is----he's using the reins that same way in every picture.

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