View Full Version : Bitless Bridles...
22nd March 2010, 09:57 PM
Hiya, I was looking for some advice on bitless bridles. I have a thoroghbred (MJ) and i have tried alot of different bits on him but he just doesnt seem happy in any of them. From the second i put his bridle on to the second i take it off, he is constantly playing with his mouth, occasional head shaking and really doesnt appreciate any contact!
I was wondering whether anyone has used or does use a bitless bridle? Have they got the same control as normal bridles?? And how would I know which is best for MJ?
22nd March 2010, 11:13 PM
I also have a TB (ex racer) and an Anglo Arab and I ride both of them in Dr Cooks bitless bridles. If you google it you will get all the info you need. The good thing about the Dr Cooks is that you can try it out for 30 days and if you decide you don't like it, you will get a refund. Control is great and never have any problems with brakes and my horses seem happy with the bridles too.
22nd March 2010, 11:28 PM
I use a Dr Cooks bitless bridle on my New Forest mare.
She's always had issues with the bit since I bought her - her previous owners used a dutch gag which didn't help her stargazing one bit! I put her in a snaffle which she is better in but still not totally happy. I got the bitless a year ago now.
She goes very well in her Dr Cooks. I feel I have exactly the same level of control as in the bit, without her fighting it and lifting her head as much.
The only thing I don't find it good for is schooling - we do this with a bit (because we have to use it for competitions anyway). We have come to a deal where I only use the bit twice a week max for schooling - hacking and jumping and other fun stuff is bitless. I've found since going bitless she's better in the bit!
I would try a Dr Cooks - I've ridden another pony in a scrawbrig and didn't rate it as much - it felt quite crude?
Oh, and it takes them a ride or so to get used to the steering - I longreined her in it first :D
23rd March 2010, 12:07 AM
i moved my fussy and strong horse to a Dr cooks and he became almost to laid back!
My mare i competed and galloped all over in her dr cooks, loved it.
Schooling wise it can feel a bit wooden to start with as they get used to it, but my mare worked onto a lovely contact and flexed beautifully once she made the transition and understood the different signals. I never had a problem with brakes or steering from the start, just the finer bits took a little longer.
Tarka the horse
23rd March 2010, 07:59 AM
I ride all 3 of mine in rope halters and a rope!! One of mine has never even had a bit in his mouth.....which is somthing I will have tochange I guess, if I ever have to sell him!!!
I school, jump and hack in my halters.
23rd March 2010, 08:03 AM
DR. cooks i used on my horse <lent one > before that i used his halter and reins around field, farm and short hacks i can remember he did spook on a open field and had good brakes like that and lent dr. cooks < he was having an issue with his teeth,or mouth we think changes at that age > for a few weeks ,i am going to buy my own though you do feel the differance i how you ride i think i used my legs and balance more .Every horse is differant , try to lend one and try it in a safe area and let us know how you get on ,
23rd March 2010, 10:16 AM
Thanks guys, thats great!! I will have a look online at the different types and let you know how it goes :D
24th March 2010, 07:37 PM
I use a S hack.
It is very lightweight, and I can do everything it. Steering and brakes are not a problem. Look on the performance equestrian site
28th March 2010, 10:10 AM
One of the mares i ride has an english hackamore. Control is generaly fine. But i have to really know how to ride with my seat with her, because i feel mean pulling too much on the hackamore!
28th March 2010, 11:50 AM
I've got a Dr Cooks, bought it 2 years ago and he went fine in it. It was me with the issue ie hacking on roads will I get the same breaks? Currently trying to overcome this fear and yesterday rode around farmyard,He was good ,no steering problems and i really think if i can get passed the nerve stage its the way to go!!
28th March 2010, 12:12 PM
I used a lightrider on Neo as he was the same with the bit. I continued to try and find a bit and finally found that he's OK with the Myler comfort snaffle. He still grinds his teeth on it a bit but I can get some contact. He still shakes his head if I have to hold him back though. I could probably still hack out in the bitless, but want to eventually do dressage so had to find a bit that would work and is dressage legal
29th March 2010, 02:06 PM
I tried an English Hackamore on him on Friday and it was a disaster he walked into the skool fine and then just planted himself and shaking his head, threatened to rear and was spinning :rolleyes::rolleyes:....but i dont blame the hackamore at all hes been like this for a while in the myler ive had him in so im giving up on going bitless until i get this energy out of him...typical thoroghbreds ay!!!
Thanks for all your suggestions and comments but will stick with a bit for now and when hes back in a solid routine and back to being his good twin :lol: i will go bitless again and persevere this time!
29th March 2010, 06:59 PM
I have used a hackamore, breaks were all in order but I did experience difficulty with my steering!
Best thing to do is borrow one from a friend, test it out and see how you get on with it
29th March 2010, 07:23 PM
Noo don't give up! English Hackamores are very different to more modern bitless bridles like Dr Cooks. Hackamores have a fair amount of leverage on them, which I would guess could make some horses rear. Try a different type?
30th March 2010, 11:32 AM
Im not going to give up, i'm just going to get him back to his normal self, as he has been a little s**t just lately i think its bcus hes a t-bred and has been out on lush grass for the first time this year...i need to get him in a routine and settled again. Im movin him on friday so get him settled there and then i will start again......im deffo not going to give up tho just need to choose the right time for me and him :D Thanks for the comments and support guys :D :Dx
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