How do you hold your reins? - The Horse Forum
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 37 Old 04-27-2012, 11:55 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: New York
Posts: 166
• Horses: 0
How do you hold your reins?

My question to you is: How were you taught to hold the reins?

I am lucky enough to work at an animal hospital where there are quite a few equestrians around who are all crazy about horses. We got into a conversation about how you hold the reins yesterday in regards to what we were taught.

I distinctly remember holding the reins in a different manner before my accident than after. (At the time it wasn't so clear and I had to re-learn EVERYTHING.) Before the accident I was taught to hold the reins in two hands in a tight grip while leaving your pinky out. (Sorry if that is a poor description-not quite sure how to describe it.)

Interestingly enough- my orthopedic surgeon said that leaving the pinky out is probably what the "very interesting" fracture in my hand.

After the accident, when I was back in the saddle and everything was fuzzy (concussion too...) I had to ask how to hold the reins properly and was taught to keep all my fingers in a tight grip on the reins INCLUDING the pinky.

Since I ran into my co-worker who uses the "pinky out" method (and yet another who rides Western...which is a horse of a different color altogether, hehe) I figured I would come on here and poke a few brains as to what you all do.
So tell me- are you in or out?

Do what you feel in your heart to be right- for you'll be criticized anyway. You'll be ****ed if you do, and ****ed if you don't. - Eleanor Roosevelt
Nitefeatherz is offline  
Sponsored Links
post #2 of 37 Old 04-28-2012, 12:02 AM
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Southern California
Posts: 751
• Horses: 0
I hold my reins thumb on top, with 3 fingers holding the reins and my pinky left out. wrists turned a tad. Like my avatar

My horse's feet are as swift as rolling thunder He carries me away from all my fears And when the world threatens to fall asunder His mane is there to wipe away my tears.
redape49 is offline  
post #3 of 37 Old 04-28-2012, 12:05 AM
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Perth, Western Australia
Posts: 5,153
• Horses: 0
The pinky out is correct. I sometimes have my ring finger out as well on my left hand, as the knuckle on that finger is often pained due to other sports injuries, and I don't feel like I can use that hand when it is sore.

Mods, grant me the serenity to see the opinions I cannot change, courage to change the ones that should change, and the wisdom to spot the trolls.
Chiilaa is offline  
post #4 of 37 Old 04-28-2012, 12:18 AM
Green Broke
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: New South Wales, Australia
Posts: 4,847
• Horses: 1
Pinkie out.

I've ridden with the next finger up out as well... I think that is how I ride with a double bridle too? One with pinkie and then one with the one up. I can't remember, I just do it.

I don't think I could ride pinkie would feel so uncontrolled and unrefined!
Saskia is offline  
post #5 of 37 Old 04-28-2012, 01:10 AM
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Cooksburgh, PA
Posts: 761
• Horses: 1
i guess I'm not the one to answer your question. My horse is just learning to neck rein with leg pressure. She's doing great. I am SO busy riding over logs, creeks, and hacking a new trail, I switch to one hand while the other is moving branches out of my face. I just try to always maintain proper length of reins on her bit. She and I are always working on obstacles that my finger placement on the reins don't come into focus for us. So I guess this reply is a zero on your concern level. It did however make me think that I don't think about it so thank you! I guess I need to know how to hold the reins too, pinky in or out!
Nitefeatherz likes this.
Spirit Lifter is offline  
post #6 of 37 Old 04-28-2012, 01:13 AM
Super Moderator
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Seattle, WA
Posts: 41,058
• Horses: 2
I hold them as redape. On rare occasions I will put the pinky onthe outside because it instantly shortens the reins by about an inch, if needed. bad habit, tho.
tinyliny is offline  
post #7 of 37 Old 04-28-2012, 07:45 AM
Join Date: Apr 2012
Posts: 34
• Horses: 0
I got taught to and always ride with my pinkie out
Pen is offline  
post #8 of 37 Old 04-28-2012, 11:21 AM
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 1,156
• Horses: 0
Thumbs on top, pinkies out. :)
Cinder is offline  
post #9 of 37 Old 04-28-2012, 02:14 PM
Green Broke
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Surry, Va
Posts: 4,712
• Horses: 0
I dont think the horse cares
Joe4d is offline  
post #10 of 37 Old 04-28-2012, 04:16 PM
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Scotland
Posts: 479
• Horses: 2
Snaffle rein between pinkie and ring finger, curb rein between ring and middle finger...
minstrel is offline  

Quick Reply

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the The Horse Forum forums, you must first register.

Already have a Horse Forum account?
Members are allowed only one account per person at the Horse Forum, so if you've made an account here in the past you'll need to continue using that account. Please do not create a new account or you may lose access to the Horse Forum. If you need help recovering your existing account, please Contact Us. We'll be glad to help!

New to the Horse Forum?
Please choose a username you will be satisfied with using for the duration of your membership at the Horse Forum. We do not change members' usernames upon request because that would make it difficult for everyone to keep track of who is who on the forum. For that reason, please do not incorporate your horse's name into your username so that you are not stuck with a username related to a horse you may no longer have some day, or use any other username you may no longer identify with or care for in the future.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.

Old Thread Warning
This thread is more than 90 days old. When a thread is this old, it is often better to start a new thread rather than post to it. However, If you feel you have something of value to add to this particular thread, you can do so by checking the box below before submitting your post.

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Let's take this one day at a time. I'll hold your hand if you hold mine. sporthorsegirl Member Journals 24 08-20-2012 03:18 PM
How to hold the reins while Barrel Racing Cowgirl Up Barrel Racing 15 09-13-2011 06:41 PM
.:. Pads, Reins, Cavesons, Side Reins, Driving Reins, etc .:. mliponoga Tack and Equipment Classifieds 3 06-05-2011 07:49 PM
Hold Reins or Let Go? BIG QUESTION Phantomcolt18 Horse Riding 94 01-29-2011 09:24 PM
hold your reins? Jr_lover Horse Training 27 02-01-2009 06:10 PM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome