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Double Bridles

This is a discussion on Double Bridles within the Dressage forums, part of the English Riding category
  • Western double bridle
  • How does a double bridle work

View Poll Results: Double Bridles
They are a great teaching aid 22 51.16%
I use them all the time 0 0%
They are unneccesary and cruel 4 9.30%
Don't have an opinon 17 39.53%
Voters: 43. You may not vote on this poll

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    11-06-2012, 09:03 AM
  #21
Foal
How is he supposed to stop respecting the double? We use it for a week, then back to the snaffle. How is he going to stop respecting it? I'm not one of those riders who just holds on the horse's mouth and kicks them forward so they have a 'headset' not truly collected. I am able to be very light with the double bridle because I can give to him so much so it helps me to maneuver his body around. Not sure why you can't see that.
     
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    11-06-2012, 09:29 AM
  #22
Green Broke
It feels like it is working because like draw reins etc sticking him in a double disguises the problem, well it does untill the horse works out how to avoid it and then it comes back and bites you on the arse.

Horses become used to bits, if you don't sort the issue out it will always be there and you will need harsher and harsher bits to force him into your incorrect frame (because if he isnt straight and soft then he isnt correct)


3rd level is medium level in the UK.

My last pony aged 20 was happily doing medium level in a snaffle, he was also long backed and not build idealy for dressage. If you are riding correctly then you don't need a gadget to sort it out. Oppinionated was an understatement when it came to stan.

My injured 5yrold probably found it very very difficult to do most of the work I was asking concidering at the time I didnt know he had a fractured pelvis, So it would have been very physicaly hard for him to take weight over his back and sit on his hocks, but I've not resorted to gadgets under saddle.

YOu should not be using the double to get the result in the snaffle, it should be the other way round.
We can't see why you think that a double helps your training, it doesnt it is concealing the bigger issue that you need to go back and fix if you ever want to achieve proper work. You are using the double as a crutch and yes you are riding front to back because if you were riding back to front properly then you would not need the double at all and would not be fixated with the double being the "cure"
equiniphile and Kayty like this.
     
    11-06-2012, 09:53 AM
  #23
Foal
I rarely use my double- if I do it is usually in the competitions to be able to give more finesse to movements in which my mare tends to get excited- flying changes, simple changes etc. The double means I am able to make smaller movements to get the message across.
However, I only ever ride her in a snaffle- dressage/jumping/cross country, always snaffle, so she doesn't like the curb action much, and easily goes behind. In a month I might ride in the double once or twice.
     
    11-06-2012, 10:19 AM
  #24
Weanling
Quote:
Originally Posted by katdressagegirl    
Yet with him, it takes a combination of my body and my rein aids to get him to actually listen to my seat aids. When he becomes lighter off of my seat aids I won't need to use the bridle at all. However to get him to that point, I need to make my point with him that running through my aids is not ok. And besides I'd rather tell him once with the double then keep nagging him with the snaffle. After a half dozen rides with the double I will switch back to the snaffle. In this way he will learn that he needs to respect my seat and leg aids and he will be lighter in the bridle.
As quite a few people have put it, you are using the double bridle as a bandaid for a training issue. As they have been saying, it's not going to fix your problem. You have holes in your training, thus the problems. Fix the holes, you fix the problem.

1 of 2 things need to happen. 1) you get a new trainer/ coach that knows
How to fix this without bandaid fixes (these are never a long term fix) or 2) hire a trainer/ coach that knows how to fix this without bandaid fixes.

If you are using a double bridle in the way you have stated, you shouldn't be riding in one. Period. I'm not even going to start with what the out come of nagging a horse with a cue does... you know the answer.
     
    11-06-2012, 05:43 PM
  #25
Foal
What I still fail to understand is why I cannot use the double bridle to get my horse better off my seat! It's not a band-aid for poor riding at all. I can ride my horse from the back all I want...ride him forward forward forward til I'm blue in the face but unless I can catch it and contain it in the front it doesn't do a bit of good. With the double (and my seat!) I'm catching that forward energy and getting him more collected. He's so much lighter and has more impulsion overall. I am able to focus on getting myself in the right position and getting him in the right position very easily and everything comes that much easier...whether it's mediums, half-passes, counter-canter serpentines...he's relaxed and moving more correctly overall. And isn't that the goal of dressage? And yes I am not going to ride him in this for long..my instructor said about a half dozen times to build some correct muscle and so he learns that he can go about it more relaxed and evenly. Then we will go back to the snaffle and work the same movements. I can guarantee you that he will be ten times better by then. This is my first time riding him the double bridle....I have used it before with other horses with much success. Please..again...maybe I'm thick but no one here is making any sense.

Seems to me you have pre-concieved notions about what I am doing...instead of taking the time to understand. Believe me...I've studied a ton of dressage theory and I get the whole not riding front to back, pulling their heads in, etc etc. And so that's not what is happening here.
     
    11-06-2012, 06:03 PM
  #26
Trained
If you aren't pulling then a snaffle should work just as well as a double bridle. That is just basic biomechanics and theory. If you aren't pulling on a bit then you should not need it. If you are not relying on spurs, you should not need them. If you aren't using your saddle as a crutch, you should be able to ride in any saddle, etc.. Knowing theory and riding with it are two very independent things.

As well how do you know that the horse is going correctly? Because it feels easy?? Because you think so? Because your coach says so? Or because Robert Dover or Debbie MacDonald or Kathy Priest say so?
All are difference "versions" of "correct" and despite what your teacher in school says, only very few opinions are actually correct. This is true in real life as well. There is usually a right and wrong.

Stopping a bolting horse or half halting a forward one does not take a big bit, it takes timing. If you need the big bit, then you are not half halting correctly. This is another of many truths, or "rights and wrongs" that exist in the world of riding and do not change whether you are riding a 3 year old for the first time or a 21 year old schoolie. I am basing my opinion of your riding based only upon what you are saying, and not on any pre-concieved notions past the basic principles of correct riding.
A double bridle will not and has never collected a horse. To say that a bridle collects a horse is to say that a gun is to blame in a murder. It is a dumb piece of steel, it cannot "do" anything by will or force. You can either use it correctly or incorrectly, that is all.
Kayty, ptvintage, Chiilaa and 2 others like this.
     
    11-06-2012, 07:35 PM
  #27
Trained
Anebel - my "twinkle toes" gelding has a lovely tendency to bolt if he doesn't spook - generally over something as simple as people walking past the arena. He is a sensitive, edgy type of horse and when he bolts, it is a true, mad panic bolt.
I can get him back in a snaffle.
He also likes to pull like a train if you let him. As you saw in the photos and video's that I purchased him from - he's build slightly downhill with a long neck and short front legs. He naturally wants to be on the forehand, his saving grace is his super ability to sit - when you can convince him to do as much.
I have NO desire to put this horse in a double. I'm sure it'll make him lighter in front, and it'll feel a heck of a lot easier than trying to get my half halts to connect every few strides, and feeling as though I've been to the gym working on my abs and core for an hour by the time I get off. But he is improving every day, and at the time when I need to introduce a double for competition requirements, I will have him at the point where the double is merely there because it's compulsary, not because I need to rely on it to keep him together.
A bridle doesn't teach a horse to react to your seat. Your SEAT teaches a horse to react to your seat. Put extra metal in its mouth, and it's reacting to the metal, not your seat.

Of course it will feel easier, better etc. in a double for a while. The horse has poll pressure from the curb, touch the curb and he's going to come light from it - which yes, will feel nicer than having to carry a stack of bricks around for 20minutes before finally getting some steps of lightness to end the session on.
But it's not training the horse anything. It's being used as a crutch.
I am unsure as to why you think OP, that no one here is talking sense. When every other respondant here has been preaching the same verse?
     
    11-06-2012, 08:49 PM
  #28
Foal
It's just so hard to take what you are saying and apply it to my riding..because there's no proof. Because of the time in the double, when I go back to the snaffle, my horse will be straighter, more correct, happier, and overall we will work more in harmony. Now if I went back to the snaffle and we had the same issues then perhaps I could see something. But this hasn't happened. If it was truly a 'bandaid' then the same problems would present themselves.


At anebel: I have never said I was pulling on my horse. Don't know where you got that. I am using a passive hand, when the horse meets the bit it's his own fault.

As Henry Wynmalen who wrote Dressage: A Study of the Finer Points of Riding said so aptly, "In order to obtain the maximum effect of the horse's motive power, it is essential to increase the activity of the horse's quarters by shortening the base whereon the horse moves. That can only be done by demanding increase of energy, or forward impulse, without allowing the horse to translate that increase of energy into greater speed on a longer base, as he would undoubtedly do if there were no bridle to restrain him." This was of course within the context of his discussion on double bridles.

And also within the discussion on straightening the horse, he says, "The rein of opposition to the haunches can prevent the quarters from moving over against the quarters from moving over against its effect and can also move the quarters over to the other side by its effect." So obviously the reins can control his haunches, which is basically what I am doing. I can just do it with more finesse and less fighting in the double bridle. Which as I've explained many a time...will build the correct muscles so that he can physically do it better and with more ease when I ask him in the snaffle.

But honestly...we are talking at cross-purposes. I am convinced of my way as much as you are...and that doesn't make me the bad person inasmuch as it doesn't make you the bad person. I'm not harming my horse, neither am I teaching him bad habits...he's happy and healthy and enjoys his work.
     
    11-06-2012, 09:15 PM
  #29
Trained
I haven't voted, I would vote for a refinement aid, not a teaching aid. I think the progression for horses should be the same if they are English or Western, no bit, snaffle, then curb or double, you don't get to the next level until you have conquered the one you are on.
EvilHorseOfDoom likes this.
     
    11-06-2012, 09:22 PM
  #30
Showing
They are a great teaching aid - No. They're for refinement. Not teaching. The horse should already be educated enough with a snaffle; the curb is for that refinement.

I use them all the time - Nobody should vote for this!

They are unneccesary and cruel - No. They are unnecessary in a lot of instances such as the one that you, OP, describe. They're not "necessary" as such, regardless - they add finesse to an education. As for cruelty, that's the rider, not the piece of inanimate metal.

Don't have an opinon
     

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