Originally Posted by LostDragonflyWings
Thanks! Are (all) Pelhams legal or illegal in Dressage?
However, I do prefer schooling in a pelham to schooling in a waterford as at least the pelham will have normal, legal, snaffle action most of the time, unless the curb is engaged for a correction. It is a better teaching tool, it is a better correcting tool, and will end up in a horse who can be ridden in a legal snaffle 100% of the time.
My one student on an OTTB we transitioned into a pelham early this year and within 6 weeks of riding, we were able to change back into a normal snaffle with now no incidents of the horse just bolting and rooting, or incident which can easily be corrected in a snaffle. And we are really putting the pressure on the poor guy! Third level or bust!
IMO if you just ride in a waterford 100% of the time, it becomes a bandaid as the horse is not learning to respect the bit. The horse tries to root and the bit collapses - it does not really correct the horse away from rooting and bolting, it just has a displeasing action. As soon as the horse gets into something with a pleasing action - like a normal snaffle - that front door is still wide open. And now you have no brakes. Better to use a pelham to teach the horse that you still have brakes.
I would not be opposed to a holiday in Cali
It's too bad I can't see any clinics in your area on the CDS website - but might be worth it to contact a local dressage barn for a lesson. Of course they may just completely contradict what I say hahaha.