over tightened nose bands
   

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over tightened nose bands

This is a discussion on over tightened nose bands within the English Riding forums, part of the Riding Horses category
  • How tight do you do up the noseband
  • Horse dressage bit issues flicks nose behind bit

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    02-08-2012, 05:03 PM
  #1
Weanling
over tightened nose bands

Jaw-clamping nosebands condemned by international body | Horsetalk.co.nz - International horse news

January 31, 2012

The use of jaw-clamping nosebands to avoid competition penalties have been condemned by the International Society for Equitation Science, which says they are covering up poor training at the expense of horse welfare.

The society called for a return to the established practice of placing two fingers under the noseband to demonstrate that it had not been over-tightened. The society, in noting that horses were the only animals competing at the Olympic Games, suggested welfare questions could begin to arise around equestrian sports if current trends were allowed to persist.
It said the noseband, a common feature of contemporary bridle designs used on performance horses, was nowadays designed to be acutely tightened to restrict virtually all normal jaw and tongue movements. This, it added, was a fairly recent innovation in noseband design.
Forty years ago, nosebands were largely aesthetic rather than functional.
It said the practice of over-tightening nosebands to avoid penalties in competition is covering up poor training at the expense of horse welfare.
"Recent research suggests that horses wearing tight nosebands undergo a physiological stress response, are sensitized to bit pressure and may have reduced blood flow with potential to cause injuries and tissue damage, including nasal bone deformities, even when padding accompanies the noseband such as in the case of so-called crank nosebands," the society said.
It noted that, in the last few decades, there had been a steady increase in the design of nosebands that effectively mask evidence of a horse's discomfort.
"The incentives for athletes to over-tighten nosebands arise from the rules of dressage that penalize displays of discomfort such as open mouths and lolling tongues.
"These rules were written by the sport's governing bodies to promote excellent training and the demonstration of qualities such as freedom, harmony, lightness and acceptance of the bit without tension.
"Restrictive tight nosebands can prevent the horse from displaying unwanted behaviours such as opening, gaping or crossing the jaw, and are enabling competitors to mask signs of tension which judges should penalise as evidence of inferior training. Thus nosebands may hinder effective judging.
The society called for a return to the established practice of placing two fingers under the noseband to demonstrate that it has not been over-tightened.
This amount of space under the noseband allows horses to express tension or seek relief from the pressure of the bit and so aligns with the principles of ethical equitation.
The ISES position statement on nosebands
It suggested that, for fairness and objectivity, a standard taper gauge should be used by stewards at competitions. The taper gauge should be placed without force at the nasal midline and be clearly marked to show the desired stop, which, in alignment with established industry guidance, should be the dimensions of two average adult fingers.
In most equestrian disciplines, stewards check that all equipment used on horses complies with the regulations specified for that discipline. With a taper gauge, stewards could ensure that the detrimental effects of over-tightened nosebands could be eliminated or at least lessened, it said.
The society is a non-profit body that aims to facilitate research into the training of horses to enhance horse welfare and improve the horse-rider relationship.


More information: www.equitationscience.com Blog: Cranking up the lightness and grace in dressage
Horse abuse in the news



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    02-08-2012, 06:43 PM
  #2
Yearling
YAY! It's about time an official body of some sort spoke up about this. I especially like this bit:

Quote:
"Restrictive tight nosebands can prevent the horse from displaying unwanted behaviours such as opening, gaping or crossing the jaw, and are enabling competitors to mask signs of tension which judges should penalise as evidence of inferior training.
Unfortunately I don't think there will be any kind of outcry from the public at the Olympics because the average person can't tell that the noseband is cranked shut. But the word "dressage" means "training," and these days it's anything but. It's about time people realized that.
Northern likes this.
     
    02-08-2012, 06:48 PM
  #3
Showing
I think anyone whom was doing it in the first place must of had a reason. Now is that reason valid? That's a whole different enchilada.

Personally, if the horse developed habits of crossing the jaw or gaping their mouth or having their tongue behind the bit, then something went awry in their training. They might have been pushed too hard and fast, were in rough hands, or maybe they just felt like evading due to lack of interest. Who knows.
     
    02-08-2012, 06:54 PM
  #4
Weanling
This is a really interesting bit, I never new this was a problem but it makes sense! Kind of makes me feel bad for using figure 8s and flashes but I don't have them over tightened so hopefully my horse isnt too stressed :/
     
    02-08-2012, 07:24 PM
  #5
Trained
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jumper12    
This is a really interesting bit, I never new this was a problem but it makes sense! Kind of makes me feel bad for using figure 8s and flashes but I don't have them over tightened so hopefully my horse isnt too stressed :/
I use a crank noseband - everyone going to jump on me?
I hope not, because I certainly don't use it to 'crank' the jaw shut. I like the ease of the noseband, and because the bridle only had the crank option - but everything else about the bridle is exactly what I was looking for.
Just because you use a certain type of noseband, absolutely does not mean, that you use to to jam the jaw shut. That is a big pet peeve of mine!


As someone has said above, it is very hard to police this issue. How tight is too tight? And will stewards at FEI sanctioned events or even just local events, have the right to tell competitors that their noseband is too tight, and to loosen it or be eliminated?
sporthorsegirl likes this.
     
    02-09-2012, 05:50 PM
  #6
Weanling
Kyaty, my bridle is the same. Again It's not cranked and I can still get fingers under it. The scary thing in my mind is the fact there is one that use an Allen key to tighten. How freak'n tight do you need it if you have use an allen key to tighten it???
     
    02-09-2012, 06:15 PM
  #7
Trained
I haven't seen one that needs an Allen key to tighten.... are you able to post a link to show that? I'm curious and quite mortified at the same time!
     
    02-09-2012, 08:43 PM
  #8
Weanling
Kayty, not sure why you quoted me?? I wasnt meaning to "jump on" anyone for using a certain type of noseband if that's what you were implying, I did not intend to come off that way! :)
     
    02-09-2012, 09:05 PM
  #9
Trained
No no Jumper, sorry - I was just using it as an example, that you were worried about what type of noseband you are using. Because in the past people have got quite animated when they've seen a crank noseband on a horse, without even knowing if it is done up exceedingly tight or not.
     
    02-13-2012, 01:14 AM
  #10
Yearling
I had a trainer once, back in the day that told me to tighten the horses nose band super tight so that he wouldn't "chomp" on his bit. I chose instead, to change his bit. He was terribly over bitted and needed something a lot less than what he was going in. Problem solved.
I'm at a hunter/jumper show barn currently... and the figure 8 bridle is commonly used simply for the way it looks. So there are plenty of otherwise lovely horses, going around with their flashes PAINFULLY tight.
*sigh*
Northern likes this.
     

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