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Why do english bridles have nosebands but western do not?

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  • #21
    I use a plain harness leather 1 ear when I ride on the trail (along with a halter in case i need to tie) and haven't had an issue. Seems like alot less leather on the horse's head so it works for me.

    My friend had a really heavy double-ear with silver balls and leather knots on the whole thing. She had to dismount and groundtie for a trail class and wouldn't you know... her horse lowered his head and shook the thing off. Luckily, he just stayed there completely bridleless as she finished walking around him. She ended up winning the class!
    The only thing the government needs to solve all of its problems is a Council of Common Sense.

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    • #22
      Originally posted by caballero View Post
      Restricting the neck's range of vertical motion to help the horse balance itself at high speed makes absolutely no sense.

      Standing martingales are prohibited in eventing for that very reason.
      Yes, but running barrels and poles is a little different and the balance part is in the turns not the run downs. I'm not familiar with eventing but I've never seen an eventer have to make three tight turns in a confined space. Some horses just feel more balanced with the tie down and run better in one. Some horses don't like them. They are a legal piece of equipment in barrel racing.

      Originally posted by caballero View Post
      And bit hobbles to keep a snaffle in place? How hard are you pulling on those reins?
      I consider the bit hobble more of a safety device. It performs a very similar function to a pair of bit guards. I've never pulled a bit through a horse's mouth, but I know it's possible and I therefore take a proactive step to make sure it doesn't happen.

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      • #23
        You really don't have to pull all that hard for some snaffles, eggbutts for instance, to slide into the mouth. If the horse opens its mouth and/or cocks its head and you have what I would consider a light to moderate amount of contact on the reins, the bit can slip into and through the mouth. Young horses (the ones generally wearing a snaffle) just doing weird young horse things with the bit can do this pretty easily.

        Right or wrong, gaming horses to frequently use a tie down to balance on.

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        • #24
          Originally posted by caballero View Post
          The western bridles I've seen with the ear loops have no throatlatch. The horse can take them right off with a good rub against a post or tree.

          The more I look at western tack the less I like it. All of it.
          The ones without a throatlatch are for showing, not general use. Slip ear and one ear bridles are for the finished horse using a curb bit. Horses sitll in a snaffle use a browband bridle usually.

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          • #25
            Originally posted by candysgirl View Post
            You really don't have to pull all that hard for some snaffles, eggbutts for instance, to slide into the mouth.
            I have to say, in 50+ years of riding including more than my fair share of pretty roguish horses, I've never managed to pull a snaffle through a horse's mouth. I hear tell it 'can' happen, but I have never 'seen' it happen. So no, I don't bother with the curb strap on the snaffle when riding western.

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            • #26
              Originally posted by Beverley View Post
              I have to say, in 50+ years of riding including more than my fair share of pretty roguish horses, I've never managed to pull a snaffle through a horse's mouth. I hear tell it 'can' happen, but I have never 'seen' it happen. So no, I don't bother with the curb strap on the snaffle when riding western.
              I have also never seen a bit ever get pulled through a horse's mouth before, ever. Not anyone I have seen at barns I board at, clinics I have gone to, shows I have attended. I have ridden my horse and seen a multitude of horses ridden sans noseband and never seen it done.

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              • #27
                I've seen a snaffle bit get pulled through the mouth.

                It's not something that's going to happen in normal daily riding, but in OH SH-! situations where the rein gets pulled overly hard (e.g. horse spinning and trying to bolt towards traffic).

                Adding a snaffle tie doesn't bother anything and it's there just in case.

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                • #28
                  Originally posted by gaitedincali View Post
                  I've seen a snaffle bit get pulled through the mouth.

                  It's not something that's going to happen in normal daily riding, but in OH SH-! situations where the rein gets pulled overly hard (e.g. horse spinning and trying to bolt towards traffic).

                  Adding a snaffle tie doesn't bother anything and it's there just in case.
                  I can see that in an oh crap situation it could happen. My response was to the same poster Beverly responded to who said that
                  If the horse opens its mouth and/or cocks its head and you have what I would consider a light to moderate amount of contact on the reins, the bit can slip into and through the mouth.
                  I can't see light to moderate contact ever pulling a bit through the mouth. I would say you'd have to yank pretty gosh darn hard. My trainer once fell off a horse in a small loose ring and in doing so had pulled the bit VERY hard to one side and the horse had it's mouth wide open from this and the ring still did not go through the horse's mouth.

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                  • #29
                    I can see how it 'could' happen in a really desperate situation (if the headstall doesn't break first)...but will just observe that the very loose leather curb strap touted as the cure is not going to stop it from happening IMO. The strap being smaller than the snaffle ring will just feed on through. I guess I was lucky enough to learn early on that 'brute force' even in a panic situation is not a solution, finesse and angles are. But of course in true oh sh*t situations all bets can indeed be off!

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                    • #30
                      What am I missing here? For a snaffle's cheek to be pulled into the horse's mouth, the whole damn bridle would have to rotate around the horse's head.

                      Think about it. If you pull on the right rein the left ring of the snaffle is still attached to the left bridle cheek, which is attached to the crown piece, which has a browband around the front of the ears.

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                      • #31
                        Your observation is correct. However I note a number of western riders (and BNTs) advocate a really loosely hanging snaffle (and too often, curb bit), theory being, they want the horse to 'pick up and carry' the bit. So yeah, if the bit is hanging a half inch to an inch lower than what I consider to be proper fit (you know, the wrinkles and smiles measurements), you could theoretically have enough play to pull ring into mouth- pulling really hard, against a really resistant horse- before the bridle breaks and without the bridle rotating.

                        But like I said, I've never managed to do it, or seen it happen.

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                        • #32
                          My understanding is that a nosebands were originally attached to bridles so that the horse could be tied while bridled, so you wouldn't have to tie a horse by the reins/bit. Kind of like having a halter on under a bridle.
                          Jigga:
                          Why must you chastise my brilliant idea with facts and logic? **picks up toys (and wine) and goes home**

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                          • #33
                            Originally posted by caballero View Post
                            What am I missing here? For a snaffle's cheek to be pulled into the horse's mouth, the whole damn bridle would have to rotate around the horse's head.
                            The whole bridle doesn't have to rotate. The single strap connected to the bit - which slides through the browband and is independent of the throatlatch on western-style bridle - has to slide.


                            Really, it happens. People aren't claiming the aliens killed JFK. I don't know why this is so far out there for people.

                            And really, the little strap, properly adjusted, helps.

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                            • #34
                              Originally posted by gaitedincali View Post
                              People aren't claiming the aliens killed JFK.
                              Wait....they didn't????

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                              • #35
                                Originally posted by caballero View Post
                                Wait....they didn't????
                                No, it was the guy on the grassy knoll.

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                                • #36
                                  Originally posted by Beverley View Post
                                  No, it was the guy on the grassy knoll.
                                  I hear there were more than one.

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