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Do you jump in a running martingale?

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  • Do you jump in a running martingale?

    Simple question from a simple girl

    At the clinic I went to yesterday I noticed that everyone but me was jumping in a running martingale. It didn't "bother" me but I was curious so I asked Sally (Cousins). She started laughing and so did everyone else and said "a horse is never truly tacked up until it has a running on".

    She said it's one of those things that doesn't do any harm if you don't need it, but is there if you do, and she has all of her horses in them.

    I never thought about riding in one, don't know if I really need it. Do you ride in one? Why?
    http://www.clarkdesigngrouparchitects.com/index.html - Lets build your dream barn

  • #2
    Keebler (argumentative head tosser): yes, because it makes him mind his manners

    Boscoe (anxious head tosser): yes, because it keeps that behavior from escalating and keeps me from having to give him an active correction, which only makes him MORE anxious.

    Bonnie (steady girl): no, don't need to

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    Comment


    • #3
      It's part of our jumping tack. 99% of the time we don't need it (anymore) but that 1% is why its never off

      Comment


      • #4
        Pony only gets it on for foxhunting.

        The coach for DD's pony club show jumping team actually noticed that he jumps much better without it on so off it came.

        Sally's coming to our PC on Sunday. Can't wait!

        Comment


        • #5
          Nope -- I have never used one in 25 years. A few horses at our barn use them (because they need to) and I would not hesitate to use one if *needed*, but I have to disagree that you should put one on every horse. Honestly, I just lost some respect for Sally if she is advocating every horse, every time.

          Comment


          • #6
            OK, I am from hunterland here. What exactly does a running martingale do other than keeping the horse from hitting you in the face with a head toss? I guess I don't understand why it is a "must-have" on cross country. Does it give you more control without having to go to a bigger bit?

            Comment

            • Original Poster

              #7
              Originally posted by SevenDogs View Post
              Honestly, I just lost some respect for Sally if she is advocating every horse, every time.
              I think the "you're never fully dressed without a running martingale" was a bit of a joke. She did say that if Juice didn't need one I shouldn't use one.
              http://www.clarkdesigngrouparchitects.com/index.html - Lets build your dream barn

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              • #8
                Yes, because I rarely have a truly steady horse (see DW Keebler comment) and as Sally says if you don't need it, it isn't doing any harm. It is important to adjust it appropriately because if too short, it will get in the way of the horse using its head and neck fully. I typically use a running attachment on my breastplate
                OTTBs rule, but spots are good too!

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Meredith Clark View Post
                  I think the "you're never fully dressed without a running martingale" was a bit of a joke. She did say that if Juice didn't need one I shouldn't use one.
                  Thanks for clarifying.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Frivian View Post
                    OK, I am from hunterland here. What exactly does a running martingale do other than keeping the horse from hitting you in the face with a head toss? I guess I don't understand why it is a "must-have" on cross country. Does it give you more control without having to go to a bigger bit?
                    I find a running martingale useful with a green horse on a steepish downhill approach to a jump.

                    If I am riding PERFECTLY, I do not need the martingale.

                    But if I am riding less-than-perfectly I find that the horse sticks his head in the air as a way to avoid the checking/balancing aid from my hand.

                    The running martingale partially compensates for the fact that I have let my hand get into the wrong position. But it DOES allow me to rebalance the horse so we aren't running on our forehand into the jump.
                    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


                    • #11
                      In terms of "never doing any harm", another trainer I knbow (who posts here) doesn't like to use a running martingale on a green horse because she says it interferes with a (wide) opening rein.
                      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


                      • #12
                        Maybe because of positioning, I find I can use opening rein fine with running attachment attached to breastplate, but am inhibited by a regular running martingale
                        OTTBs rule, but spots are good too!

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I know at least two ULR who don't like to use running martingales on leverage bits because there is always a tiny bit of weight from the rings on the reins.

                          I foxhunt in one but rarely use it otherwise. In the hunt field it helps keep my horse well mannered without bitting up.
                          Equine Ink - My soapbox for equestrian writings & reviews.
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                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Standard piece of equipment on any horse? No.

                            For safety in likely-to-be-needed situations? Yes. Such as: first time xc schooling, and/or riding in the open on a green, anxious horse. XC competition on a confirmed head tosser or "see-jump-RUN!" with head in the air type.

                            However, I HAVE seen horses lose confidence if the martingale is too restrictive. When I do use one, I make sure the rings reach well up to the horse's cheek/TMJ area, or up to the withers. Many attachments are too short, look for one in "oversize" or add an extra-long snap if needed. IMO, no martingale is preferable to a too-short martingale when jumping. For flatwork/hacking, a short one may temporarily serve a useful training purpose.

                            And for galloping/rehab racing TBs, a little extra leverage from a fork can work wonders!
                            “A clever person solves a problem. A wise person avoids it.”
                            ? Albert Einstein

                            ~AJ~

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Yes. The convincer was coming on a long downhill approach to a jump with a frost on the grass, too fast. I tried to slow down, he basically inverted his neck and at that point, you have nothing in your hands and feel pretty helpless. I do not use a leveraged bit.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by Janet View Post
                                In terms of "never doing any harm", another trainer I knbow (who posts here) doesn't like to use a running martingale on a green horse because she says it interferes with a (wide) opening rein.

                                very much agree!

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Ironically, now that I use a Miklem bridle, I find the running martingale restrictive to my horse. It almost limits my connection to the bit given the way the bit is attached to the bridle.

                                  I like not using the running. I always had one for my old guys but for the newbie, he is unrestricted. And I think given some of the hills we work (up to 20% grades), I prefer not having a running martingale. On those hills I feel it can fold a horse the wrong way (bring their head down) and cause them to endo if they trip.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    heck no!

                                    Originally posted by Janet View Post
                                    In terms of "never doing any harm", another trainer I knbow (who posts here) doesn't like to use a running martingale on a green horse because she says it interferes with a (wide) opening rein.
                                    I was about to say this.

                                    If you don't need them but you have a horse that doesn't turn great it will do much more harm than good!!

                                    I never put one on unless I think it will benefit. It's never a "just because" type of tack for me.

                                    I ride a QH mare now who I thought needed one and it turned out after 2 or 3 rides she did not need it. She told me so in a very pissy way. It ended up being to harsh for her.
                                    Last edited by purplnurpl; Dec. 13, 2011, 11:35 AM.
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                                    • #19
                                      I don't jump in a running martingale, I jump in an elasticated breastplate with running attachment. For three reasons:

                                      1. Breastplate stops saddle slippage
                                      2. Wither connector gives something to grab in emergency
                                      3. Running attachment prevents broken noses and missing teeth.

                                      I like a multi-purpose piece of tack, especially if it's as benign as this one when not in use.

                                      And this setup falls into the "better to have it and not need it, than need it and not have it" category. Along with a whip, spurs, and 4 wheel drive on the truck.
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                                      • #20
                                        Depends on horse/situation:
                                        tb for xc and foxhunting if I'm using his xc bridle since it's only a snaffle. as he can really raise his head/invert when on occassion, not alot but enough to want to have the running martingale.. don't use for stadium work etc. don't use if i use a combination bit or any bit with a shank.

                                        WB mare, always for jumping, foxhunting, xc as she likes to flip her nose and throw her head up (and does it with every frickin bit and bridle combination on earth and everyrider who rides her) so it catches her before I can.
                                        I love my OTTB! I get my dressage test done faster!

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