Question about riding in a noseband - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 9 Old 10-23-2012, 02:30 AM Thread Starter
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Question about riding in a noseband

I have a 6 y/o tb that I absolutely adore. I can and do often ride her in a snaffle bit but for the trail I prefer to go bitless and ride her in a bosal. The only problem is that her thin tb skin is so sensitive that even with slack rein just the sway of it as she walks rubs the hide off her face. I bought a western leather noseband that has a ring on the underside (from what I understand it is used for a tie down?) if I clipped my reins to the ring could I just ride her in that? The pressure seems to be exerted on the same places as the bosal. Just wondering if anyone saw any glaring problems with this before I tried it. Thanks in advance!!!
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post #2 of 9 Old 10-23-2012, 02:47 AM
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are the reins heavy? is that why they swing? I dont' know bosals so well, but arne't they supposed to be tight enough that they don'tmove unless you apply rein.

I ride in a single jointed , basic sweet iron snaffle, no nose band at all. But, the rope mecate reins I used will swing back and forth from the rythm of the horse's walking if I don't use my hand to kind of absob the motion. If I drop them on the horse's neck, they start to swing, and this motion gains momentum. But if I absorb the swing in my hand (by holding my hand always in the same place relative to his wither), then the momentum doesn't build up and the reins don't swing.

Does that make sense to you?
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post #3 of 9 Old 10-23-2012, 08:43 AM
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I wouldn't ride in a noseband because its probably not constructed in a way to withstand the usage like that.

Try a side pull - same concept just built for it

The reins sound like western style reins and those are heavier than English reins and do away (in m experience).
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post #4 of 9 Old 10-23-2012, 06:43 PM
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The noseband she is talking about is probably used for tiedowns. Those things are made to withstand bracing as many barrel horses will use them for balance. The noseband should be okay since they hang much like a bosal.
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post #5 of 9 Old 10-23-2012, 07:20 PM
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I like the suggestion for you to try a sidepull as well. It seems like it would suit your situation. will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. ... Explore. Dream. Discover.”
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post #6 of 9 Old 10-23-2012, 11:02 PM
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Originally Posted by jumanji321 View Post
The noseband she is talking about is probably used for tiedowns. Those things are made to withstand bracing as many barrel horses will use them for balance. The noseband should be okay since they hang much like a bosal.
Well I need to learn to read before I post. It should it should be okay until you find a more appropriate solution.
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post #7 of 9 Old 10-26-2012, 05:35 AM
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Welcome to the forum! I ride Bonnie in a bosal but the the one I have is extra thick along the top and I keep it pliable with cleaning and oiling. The only alternative to a bosal would be a side pull. A tie down is too slack to do much good aside from it's original intent.

If you ride with a bit in the ring, why a bosal on the trail?

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post #8 of 9 Old 10-26-2012, 10:01 AM
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Just a few questions. Firstly, what size bosal are you using? How tight are you making it with the mecate? Have you got a fiadore with it? How often do you use it? And if you ride for any length of time, say, more than an hour at a time are you adjusting it up and down the horses face or leaving it in one spot for the whole ride? And are you using direct pressure on the reins or a signal through moving the balance of the bosal to ask the horse to do things? And have you thought of wrapping the bars and nose button of the bosal with felt ore fleece?

If the horse isn’t a very advance hackamore horse you should have a fairly thick stiff bosal (probably ¾ inch) that is held in a good position with a fiadore. It should also be fairly firmly tight with the mecate. People make the mistake of thinking that thick stiff bosals are harsh and tightening them is cruel, the thing is though that you do it precisely to stop this kind of rubbing. The thicker diameter of the bosal is there to distribute the direct pressure coming through the reins over a wider surface area therefore decreasing it in any one place and the tightness of the mecate makes for less slippage between the bosal and the horses nose. You also should be stopping, and moving the bosal up or down the horses nose (and adjusting the tightness of the mecate appropriately), as the day goes by to distribute any wear on the horses nose (this is an advantage they have over a bit, you can't shift a bit around in a horses mouth to distribute the pressure the way you can a bosal on a horses snout) Finally the way you handle the reins with a hackamore has to be fairly specific, is the same for all degrees of advancement of the horse except as they get better you dispense with any direct pull, reduce the amount of over all movement of the reins and can roughly be broken down as follows a) the golden rule is always ride on a loose rein, b) only ever use one rein at a time c) when you want to ask your horse to do something as their feet are approaching the appropriate position pick up the slack from the rein, no pull, just pick up the slack d) when the horses feet are right pull the rein to instruct them in what you want, giving no more and no less than needed to get the job done e) give them an immediate release once you have completed the pull. hackamores are all about dealing with a horses feet.

From here, if you are using the bosal a fair bit the horse will become accustomed to it, both as a way of communication, and in the same way your hands will get used to manual labour if you were out digging holes with a shovel all day, if all you do is type on a computer most days (like all I unfortunately do these days), your hands get soft and will blister up real quick with a bit of manual labour. But do manual labour every day and they thicken up and harden to the work. Its the same with a bosal on a horses nose, our job as a rider is to try to make it as easy and painless as possible for the horse.

Do it right and the horse will get real soft and you can start to loosen the mecate, put on a lighter bosal take off the fiadore and have the horse working off a signal rather than direct pressure, and all the rubbing will be gone. But if it is a road you feel you want to go down, remember, its a long and slow one, it cant be rushed.
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post #9 of 9 Old 10-26-2012, 11:58 AM
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If you aren't worried about looks you can always wrap a layer or two of fleece around the nose piece of your usual headstall.

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