Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Alberta, Canada
• Horses: 0
I haven't read through all the pages of this topic, but here's what I posted in another thread, and it's what I firmly stand by. Thank you to Tim for referring me over to this thread.
draw reins, when used correctly are a very useful tool. They are meant to show your horse's nose the way to the ground, not to prevent impulsion. Unfortunately, a lot of people use them incorrectly, with both draw reins tight so the horse can't move forward.
I have used draw reins before with a horse that didn't seem able to grasp the idea of a frame, and it helped wonders, only had to use them for a couple weeks, then he held a frame consistantly. They are not to be used by someone that doesn't know how to use them though...!
I agree, horses should work from the hind end, but the need to come up and underthemselves through the back, then comes the head and neck. draw reins are useful for showing your horse's nose the way to the ground; they're a tool used to crate the correct frame in the neck. If a horse has the resemblance of a giraffe (head waaaaaay up in the air) then you might want to consider draw reins, as they just guide your hrose into the correct frame.
You can achieve this many other ways, however I found with my gelding that he would not hold a frame no matter what kind of bending and flexing I did, so I resorted to draw reins, and they worked wonders - and definitely didn't stop his impulsion... my sig pic (the one below my posts) is one of him doing an extended trot (taken at a funny time though!) with draw reins on. He is not behind the vertical, does have a nice frame, and is most definitely working from behind, with a good amount of impulsion. This was back when I was first training him to extend.
The lovely images above provided by CVLC Photography cvlphotography.com