Do any of you use draw reins?
   

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Do any of you use draw reins?

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  • Draw reins used correctly
  • When should you use draw reins

 
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    11-16-2010, 01:13 AM
  #1
Foal
Do any of you use draw reins?

How do you feel about them? I use them once a week for flat lessons(my trainer suggested it). I've been reading couple threads and saw most people give them a nay vote. Do they have any negative effect on the horse? Without draw reins I can get him on the bridle about 75% of the time(getting him on the bit during the posting trot is our biggest obstacle).
     
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    11-16-2010, 03:07 AM
  #2
Started
If used correctly I have no problem with them. The issue comes when instead of relying on pushing the horse forward and into the bit the correct way, the draw reins are used to "force" them into a false head set. It should be used as an aid, not as a solution to a problem. You push them forward correctly and just use the draw reins as kind of a guide to help them figure out what you want, but then you release, the ultimate goal being the horse softening correctly without needing "tools" like draw reins, or neck stretchers. If used incorrectly, it can cause them to strain their neck, cause improper muscle development, and in some cases cause the horse to go the extreme opposite when ridden without them, and by that I mean sticking their nose way out, throwing their head up to evade the bit ect. If you use them, make sure that you have a lesson with the trainer on the proper way to use them, and what it is that you are wanting to accomplish in using them, before you just throw them on, and go riding with them.
     
    11-16-2010, 03:09 AM
  #3
Foal
Draw reins are a tool and have there purpose. They should not be over used, yet they should still be used when necessary.. they are part of the building blocks.. if you can achieve something with draw reins you feel what the correct feeling is for with out.. it gives you a taste of the right feeling so you know what to feel for!
     
    11-16-2010, 06:31 AM
  #4
Trained
They have their place, they were designed with the right intention in mind. Unfortunately they fall into inexperienced or impatient hands desiring a 'quick fix' to give their horse a 'pretty head set' and there fore get a bad name. The biggest negative effect of them is that they very easily teach a horse to back off the contact by ducking behind the vertical and not taking the rein. If you just want your horse to 'look pretty' with a tucked in head to show your non-horsey friends, then by all means, haul on a pair of draw reins and you'll have your desired result. But if you want a horse that is travelling correctly with a connection from hind to front, teaching them to suck back is going to set your training back hugely, it is much harder to teach a horse that sucks back to step forward and take the contact, than it is to teach a horse that braces and leans on the bit to soften and accept the contact.

I have used draw reins on only a select few horses. One an ottb that was so nervous about relaxing his neck that through 'traditional' training it would have taken me months to build his confidence that he did not need to be held up by the rider, that using draw reins for 2 rides gave him the added encouragement to release his neck and lower it. Two rides only, so that I knew he'd worked out for himself that he wasn't going to fall over if he relaxed and lowered his neck, and I was able to continue training as usual.
I would only ever use them on a horse like this one, that wasn't sure that it COULD reach down and had little likelihood of avoiding the contact by sucking back. At the first signs that the horse is ducking off the contact, I remove the draw reins and ride them 'pony club style' allowing them to stretch forward and out making them take a contact, until they can start to come back into a more appropriate frame without coming behind the vertical.

I don't believe it is fair to completely disregard draw reins as a training tool, as I mentioned initially, they have their purpose and are simply meant to assist in training, not be the main training tool. In the wrong hands they cause more harm than good, and should be left to only experienced riders who have a very good understanding of a correct contact in the bridle and great knowledge in how to employ the use of draw reins only when absolutely needed - otherwise they should hang slack and not have any influence on the horse what so ever.
     
    11-16-2010, 07:02 AM
  #5
Green Broke
No, never and I wont have them on my yard or anywhere near my horses.

All too easy to abuse and the damage they can do to a horses schooling in one session can take years of reschooling to sort out.

They are OK in Expert hands but I don't believe the vast majority of riders should be using them.
     
    11-16-2010, 07:01 PM
  #6
Trained
As a clinician recently noted, if the horse is not supple at the poll, no true on the bit work can happen. Since gadgets keep the horse's head in a position by forcing them to supple their jaw, not their poll, it can only create a false headset if the poll remains locked. I see no place for their use.
     
    11-16-2010, 07:03 PM
  #7
Green Broke
Quote:
Originally Posted by MyBoyPuck    
As a clinician recently noted, if the horse is not supple at the poll, no true on the bit work can happen. Since gadgets keep the horse's head in a position by forcing them to supple their jaw, not their poll, it can only create a false headset if the poll remains locked. I see no place for their use.
They don't go supple in the jaw, they drop behind the bit and break at the 3rd vertibra in compensation.
     
    11-16-2010, 07:07 PM
  #8
Green Broke
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jordan S    
Without draw reins I can get him on the bridle about 75% of the time(getting him on the bit during the posting trot is our biggest obstacle).
I think here that you might have a problem with relying on your hands for balance. Mind you it is only a thought (having not seen you ride) but it is normaly what I find the problem is when this sort of thing only manifests in rising (posting) trot.

As for getting him on the bridle, you should concentrate more on the back end rather then what the head is doing. It is a very rare horse that wont come into an outline when ridden from back to front, leg to hand. There are a few but they are few and far between.
     
    11-16-2010, 07:25 PM
  #9
Trained
Quote:
Originally Posted by faye    
They don't go supple in the jaw, they drop behind the bit and break at the 3rd vertibra in compensation.
So even worse. Yep, no use for them at all.
     
    11-16-2010, 07:27 PM
  #10
Green Broke
I use them, but not regularly, they help my mare stretch...
     

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