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Advice on comfortable reins for trail riding

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  • Advice on comfortable reins for trail riding

    I am looking for a pair of reins for trail riding that will be comfortable for my achy hands. I prefer synthetic for ease of keeping it clean. Any suggestions?

  • #2
    Do you want western-esque or english style?

    Do you want western style split reins or a closed loop of rein like english reins or barrel type reins?


    • #3
      I use English reins for trail riding. No worries about dropping a rein. Even if they are knotted, sometimes the knot becomes undone.

      I'm sure you could fine something in a synthetic form.
      MnToBe Twinkle Star: "Twinkie"

      Proud member of the "Don't rush to kill wildlife" clique!


      • #4
        I prefer my Wintec Reins with the rubber grip for English: http://www.chicksaddlery.com/Merchan...ct_Code=WRG555
        And my Braided Barrel Racing Reins for Western: http://www.kotrading.com/8106-braide...cingreins.aspx
        "My biggest fear is that when I die my husband is going to try to sell all my horses and tack for what I told him they cost."


        • #5
          I like soft rope reins 8-9' long and connected, though I also like English leather and parachute reins as well.

          the various endurance catalogs offer a wide selection of reins

          www.runningbear.com www.parrytack.com


          there used to be another endurance company called Sportack, but I can't seem to find their website anymore


          • #6
            I love, love, love my reins: http://www.thedistancedepot.com/Beta...p/bbt-bgro.htm


            • Original Poster

              Thank you for all the good sources of tack. I think that closed reins are probably more practical, I am used them. Biothane reins feel a little slippery and I was wondering if it would not cause me to grip them too tight. They also feel stiff and this is why I looked at the rope reins. Gotta go out there and try some out, I guess!


              • #8
                I use knotted barrel reins like PRS. I can neck rein with one hand and not worry about losing a rein plus I like the knots. I also have 2 pairs of cotton roping reins that are super soft in your hands and don't get slippery even when wet.


                • #9
                  I have one set of reins that is braided cotton, really soft, with snaps at the bit ends. Under $20

                  If you prefer nylon take a look at Paso Fino tack. They have nylon reins with snaps at it ends in varying width. They are round like leadropes but not slick feeling. I have small hands so I like the thinner reins, some folks like the thicker reins


                  • #10
                    I love my cotton rope reins. I toss 'em into the washing machine (in a net bag designed for lingerie ) when I wash the saddle pads with Woolite, let 'em dry on the line on a sunny day, and they turn out beautifully.


                    • #11
                      I second the suggestion to get beta reins from www.hought.com. Gail Hought makes great tack!
                      The reins are grippy, soft, and easy to clean. Just wipe them off after use - they'll last forever.


                      • #12
                        I have flat rope reins that are about 10' long with buckles on each end(like roping/barrel reins) I like the extra length as they come in handy if you need to get off and lead horse, enclip one side and you have a nice lead.


                        • #13
                          Biothane endurance reins

                          I ride English-style in snaffle bits (French links, actually), so I ride with varying amounts of contact.

                          I love my biothane reins--they've got good grips that are a comfortable thickness for my arthritic fingers. I bought the longer ones for my original TB to do endurance, and they have too much bight when riding a smaller horse. However, I'd rather have too much bight than not enough length!

                          I recently purchased synthetic round reins, shorter than my biothane reins, that I thought would be good for my current TB (I'd like to teach him to neck rein, and the heavier weight was recommended so he could feel them). I hate them--need gloves and have to grip them too hard compared to riding the same horse in the biothane reins (with rubber grips). Made my fingers sore when my horse was feeling rowdy--some days he remembers racing a bit too fondly. I keep them in my truck for a back-up in case I have a rein failure.

                          I don't like to have to wear gloves to ride. I also have osteo arthritis in my fingers and some rotation in the joints, so a thick rein is better than thin ones. I've ridden other people's horses, and they've brought out little thin reins that I've had to sub out for my biothane reins. It is not worth the pain in the hands if a horse pulls.

                          You can also get synthetic reins for racing that are nice and wide, with grips, but the problem is that the grips are too far forward for regular riding on some of them. I buy snaps separately to attach them to the bit for easy removal. I've also got a couple pairs of these--the grips don't last real long but the reins are inexpensive.
                          "Passion without knowledge is a runaway horse."


                          • #14
                            I have ridden with yacht rope reins and don't like them - I have very small hands and it is just too much to hold onto. Like another poster, I really like the Wintec padded reins. Keep in mind that I ride with a snaffle and I like the feel of standard English reins. The Wintecs have a soft feel that doesn't bother my hands, don't get slippery when wet, and of course are easy to clean.


                            • #15
                              Depending on your horse's conformation one issue you may find with rope reins is they are usually only 8 or 9 feet long.

                              My Paint has a long low-set neck so most rope reins are too short for a comfortable hand position when riding on a loose rein.

                              I finally found some nice 10' rope reins, they're made by Silver Tip:



                              • #16
                                I don't like plain biothane reins but love my beta reins. Mine are laced and that gives them very good grip.
                                Still Crazy After All These Years


                                • #17
                                  Ditto on the Beta.. It's my favorite and easy to clean.


                                  • #18

                                    Another vote for cotton western reins. I ride english but always trailride with the wider soft ones especially in the summer. I like the ones with clips on the end for easy removal. Longer ones can be knotted anywhere you want so neck length isn't a factor. They are usually quite cheap! Even if they get wet/sweaty they still are grippy. The washable aspect is super. There are 2 kinds; the cotton ones that are made with cotton string woven and some that are softer/wider made with something akin to yarn or a cotton blend. Those are softer and come in wider widths. No need for hot gloves in the summer either w/cotton.

                                    Flyspray can ruin plastic & leather so during fly season I switch to cotton.


                                    • #19
                                      they have come out with these new "Grip Beta" synthetic reins, a soft, thick, rubbery substance with little bumps. Totally awesome. http://www.hought.com/endr.grip.html


                                      • #20
                                        Wendy - Distance Depot has the same reins for less than 1/2 the price.