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Double Bridles

This is a discussion on Double Bridles within the Dressage forums, part of the English Riding category

    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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        11-15-2012, 09:37 AM
      #71
    Foal
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by faye    
    so your 3rd level schoolmaster has never been competed before age 19 and is spookey and not been exposed to much? Then he definitely isnt a schoolmaster and he probably isnt a 3rd level horse, just because some random from a riding school has told you that they have taught it to shoulder in does not mean the horse has been taught to sholder in, more then likely it has been taught to go crooked instead.

    Medium is the UK equivalent of 3rd level. Stan had a wicked buck in him and would evade with the best off them, he did changes for fun but ask him to go sideways and he'd do his best to evade. Putting my brother on him was a risk but a calculated one (that and according to my brother he bounces well so a fall wouldnt have been that bad, better then putting him on an extremely explosive arab).

    A friends Para horse made me look like a grand prix rider, I am most deffinatly not more than medium level!

    Considering I have proof he was trained to Third Level...he was a lesson horse at Johnson and Wales...he was on the IDA team and I even contacted the head instructor there. So please don't just assume (yet again) you know my horse. I do consider him a schoolmaster because although he can be spooky at shows he's getting better as we go and he knows all the movements. At home we are great..he teaches me so much. It can just be tricky showing him. But it's a work in progress and as the last show proved to me, he's gotten much less spooky and although I don't completely trust him at shows, it's not a train wreck.

    Again I fail to see what point you are making with your brother.
         
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        11-15-2012, 10:08 AM
      #72
    Green Broke
    Right so a horse that has never actualy been out and done things is now a schoolmaster! Not a chance, a schoolmaster is a been there done that horse!

    If he genuinely was a schoolmaster then he would have been out and done things, he would have competed at 3rd level. Johnson and Wales means nothing to me, I know horses who have been in Bishop Burton (one of the biggest equestrian uni's in the uk) who would do a shockingly bad test and who have apparently been taught to advanced medium but I can tell you now in BD competition they would absolutly bomb. One of them changes late behind every time it is asked to change.

    What is the head instructors background? Has she got good results in dressage and did S/HE personaly school this horse, if not was it left to the students to school in which case it makes even more of a point that this horse will have holes in his training which you are attempting to mask with a double bridle.
    If your horse was a schoolmaster then you could put a not very good rider on him and you would get a reasonable 1st level test.

    My baby is extremely spooky and extremely difficult at home let alone at a show (he drilled me into the floor the first time I tried to get on him at a show!), if you ride them forwards and engage them they are less likely to explode (oh and he is not a school master and he is very soft in my hands in a snaffle)
         
        11-15-2012, 10:46 AM
      #73
    Foal
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by faye    
    Right so a horse that has never actualy been out and done things is now a schoolmaster! Not a chance, a schoolmaster is a been there done that horse!

    If he genuinely was a schoolmaster then he would have been out and done things, he would have competed at 3rd level. Johnson and Wales means nothing to me, I know horses who have been in Bishop Burton (one of the biggest equestrian uni's in the uk) who would do a shockingly bad test and who have apparently been taught to advanced medium but I can tell you now in BD competition they would absolutly bomb. One of them changes late behind every time it is asked to change.

    What is the head instructors background? Has she got good results in dressage and did S/HE personaly school this horse, if not was it left to the students to school in which case it makes even more of a point that this horse will have holes in his training which you are attempting to mask with a double bridle.
    If your horse was a schoolmaster then you could put a not very good rider on him and you would get a reasonable 1st level test.

    My baby is extremely spooky and extremely difficult at home let alone at a show (he drilled me into the floor the first time I tried to get on him at a show!), if you ride them forwards and engage them they are less likely to explode (oh and he is not a school master and he is very soft in my hands in a snaffle)

    He is a schoolmaster because he has the necessary knowledge to teach riders. At home he is steady and reliable; however the whole showing thing is new to him. He's very smart and picks up things quickly, although like I said I have to be on my toes with him at shows. So the fact that I can go and show him and actually get good scores is due to us both working well together...there's no way we would do well if me and my instructor hadn't put so much time taking him places and just trying to desensitize him to being in an unfamiliar setting. And now yes I consider him a schoolmaster although he was not when we first got him...which is due solely to me and my instructor.

    And I'm not sure if she did or not...I believe he was already trained when they received him. I was not able to trace his past anymore than that. Anyways, he was there for 9 years, which is unusual for a JWU horse, and the only reason they let him go was he had a soundness issue (which is no longer present) He does know his stuff by the way; there's no way any students trained him and that's a fact.

    And no I don't agree with your statement "If your horse was a schoolmaster then you could put a not very good rider on him and you would get a reasonable 1st level test." Both my boy and the horse before him were schoolmasters and this is not the case in either of them. And the mare before my boy was extremely been-there-done-that, never spooked and was trained 3rd level as well. And no I couldn't just sit up there and look pretty and hope to get good scores. And her I competed up to Second Level even though she was 24 and we still got really nice scores.

    Again I find everything you are saying completely off target. Since you don't know him nor have watched him go you are not in a position to judge his amount of training.
         
        11-15-2012, 11:04 AM
      #74
    Super Moderator
    I think the misunderstanding here is in the term 'schoolmaster' because in the UK at least this is by definition a horse that is idiot proof in whatever field its aimed at.
    I have known many riders over the years who have had horses that they just sat pretty on and they made them look good
    When I was between ages 7 and 9 I had two brilliant jumping ponies that as long as I held on to them and pointed would take me round, when I got a 'green' pony that I had to tell to jump I was totally screwed.
    Both my pinto and our warmblood will actually get robotic if you repeat the same schooling exercise too many times and go off across the ring doing half passes or lead changes without being asked. I have a UK friend who pretty much only ever rode one test in competitions on her schoolmaster mare as the horse knew it off by heart and could have done it without her help, she now has a new totally green horse and is struggling really badly
         
        11-15-2012, 11:25 AM
      #75
    Foal
    Well I've always considered a schoolhorse being "The horses that dependably, quietly and obediently carry learning riders during lessons may be called school masters." Well that's what I have. It's just at shows when things get harder, he has a tendency to get really tense which makes him stiff and obviously the judges will mark that down. He also can spook at the most ridiculous things, like literally a hoofprint. Yet this is something that is steadily improving at every show...

    @jaydee: Oh absolutely. I agree there are a fair amount of horses that can really make the rider look fantastic. However, the implication being here that I just sit on my boy and plod around the show ring is extremely offensive. Faye does not know me or my boy and so she has zero say in what I do. Again...I would never judge someone on what I read in a forum...any good horseperson would know that.
         
        11-15-2012, 01:02 PM
      #76
    Super Moderator
    I think the definition is confusing. I do know that our most recent horse was originally at an equestrian college and sold because 'the students were terrified of her' I have no idea why. She was bought from them by a dressage rider who did a very good job with her and she was used for private lessons on her yard when her daughter lost interest. She is super well behaved here on our property as she was on theirs but she was sold with the advice that she gets very excited at shows (and she does!!!) though ridden quietly she settles down, you just can't turn up and go in the ring, she takes a lot more time to settle - same applies when we take her to a local indoor for lessons though doing this is helping her a lot
    If she wasnt like this I guess someone might have sold her as a 'schoolmaster' though she is still only working at lower levels as long as you push the right buttons she will oblige but her attitude at shows made them sell her as for an 'experienced rider only'
         
        11-18-2012, 11:42 AM
      #77
    Weanling
    I just want to go on record here. I was a hasty voter and did not read for comprehension when voting on this poll many moons ago. I DO NOT believe full bridles are a teaching aid, and I blame my laziness and love of polls for premature and thoughtless voting. (I also almost voted for Lyndon LaRouche for President back in the 80's...if you know who I'm talking about you're showing your age)

    My position is this. Double bridles are used in a correct dressage program as a refining tool and not as a teaching aid. The poll choices themselves show OP's lack of understanding and experience in upper level dressage, and frankly, correct dressage overall.

    That said, I can see OP's situation in that she finds what seems to be more control of her older, incorrectly trained horse when she uses the DB. Many roads lead to Rome, and Rome in this case, for me anyways, is OP feeling...something different, and learning from it. We dressagefolks don't all have access to talented and experienced horses and trainers, and from the horse's description, he has been ridden incorrectly for eons and is now in his old age being asked to do things his body isn't willing or able to do well or easily any longer. I wonder about soundness/soreness issues, having maintained my old GP horse in competitive form into his 20's. Is he getting joint supp's, injections, chiro, massage, even some bute before or after a tough day?

    When a supposedly 3rdL 19 y o horse is unable to remain straight I would look to soreness/misalighnment and rider error. Using a DB gave OP more control over the body, but the DB should never be used as a solution. If OP is truly committed to the classical goals of dressage she must understand how critical it is to follow the basic goals of dressage-relaxation, straightness, thoroughness, etc, at every gait in a simple snaffle.

    And if this horse at his advanced age is unable to offer thoroughness, straightness, relaxation while forward, I'd exhaust all efforts to see that his evasions don't scream OUCH. And if he still evades after correct and sympathetic riding and bodywork, I would consider a carreer less strenuous for the old guy.

    Just 2 cents from an old(er) dressagecrone
         
        11-18-2012, 12:09 PM
      #78
    Weanling
    Well I made OP's horse younger by almost 3 years. He isn't 19, actually coming 22.

    All the more reason to pursue correct and sympathetic riding and not ribbons and scores. If he is stiff and spooky at shows, he is speaking loudly . Listen to him. He isn't happy. Its your job as his owner to find out why. And to make him comfortable and happy. As a dressage student and a horseman.

    I realize this sounds lofty and bitchy, but I hope you take it for the thoughtful offering that I mean it to be. Its often easier to interpret a situation from afar as a dispassionate observer.
         
        11-18-2012, 02:15 PM
      #79
    Green Broke
    I have skimmed most of this thread, and spend most of my time lurking.

    My old horse was trained to M level here, which I believe may be third level. He was 19years young.

    To keep him in the BEST condition I could, and keep him happy, he worked SOLELY in a snaffle.

    He was, and still is a school master. You could put anyone from a 3yo child to a disabled adult on that horse. The moment he felt you unbalance, he would walk, the moment you put an experienced rider on his back he would ask you all the questions to make you give the right answers.

    OP, if your horse IS a schoolmaster as you claim, then the faults that you are band-aiding with the DB are from yourself, not him.

    I STRONGLY urge you, as others have in this thread, to get it off him!
    Weezilla likes this.
         
        11-18-2012, 02:47 PM
      #80
    Foal
    @ Weezilla:

    Again perhaps we have a mis-understanding or I did not make myself as clear as I could. Sometimes we mean one thing yet another thing comes across. What about this: in some ways I mean refining yet I use the word training because in my mind they are one and the same? Training isn't only about a young horse...everytime you are on your horse you are training it. And if you are refining your horse then how are you doing that? I believe you are furthering that horse's education aka training.



    Also yes my horse is older and he can get pretty sore at times. I am careful about not pushing him too far, and yes if he is sore he gets bute. We are probably going to be doing some injections next show season as well..so that he can be physically comfortable while doing his work. But for right now, I'm actually pretty impressed with him physically. We had the chiropractor out last month as well.

    And as to the straightness issue, actually that is pretty much a non-issue anymore. I am going to attribute that to the work in the double bridle we have done....shouldn't I spend more time working him in the correct position, building muscles? Also I could spend more time focusing on myself, getting myself into a better position to influence him better...again a good thing. So yeah really he moves much better now.

    As to him being stiff and spooky at shows, as I explained, it's completely a result of him being under-exposed his whole life. And at the last show, he had only one spook at a blue truck driving wayy too fast right next to the arena.

    And no I don't think you sound lofty or bitchy. My horse's health and safety is always foremost in my mind and if he reaches the point, like the other mare I used to ride, where it's no longer fair to push him then I will move on to the next horse. P.S again not my horse...he's my instructor's horse. But he's actually in fairly good shape considering his age...I attribute that to good care and the fact he wasn't trained til he was like 8.













         

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