Selecting tack for adopted horse - no history - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 15 Old 01-30-2012, 09:31 PM
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Realistically, any horse should be able to direct rein as that is normally taught before they learn to neck rein. However, if it has been years since they were ridden with direct reining, then it may take a bit of re-introducing to remind them of what they are supposed to do.

Truthfully, though, if they already neck rein, I would just ride them that way.

Here is a super nice quality browband headstall that is very reasonably priced. I have 3 of these that I used on everything from colts in training to my finished horses and they work great.
Cowhand Quick Change 3/4" Browband Headstall | NRS - National Roper Supply - Western Wear, tack, team ropes, horse tack, team roping ropes, bits...

I agree on the snaffle suggestion, but one other thing that I feel should be mentioned is that since you don't know their tack history, they may not be used to being ridden in a snaffle.

If a horse has been ridden in a curb bit for a long time, then they may not be as responsive in a snaffle as they should. Of course, since you are new to these horses, you should really ride the first few times in a smaller, safely enclosed area like a roundpen or small arena. That way, if something happens, there is less risk to both you and the horse.
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post #12 of 15 Old 01-31-2012, 12:05 AM Thread Starter
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This has been great info...I still have much to learn. Video was helpful and so was the tack site. Since I don't know the horse's history, should I start with a curb or a snaffle? (Either way someone else will climb aboard for the first ride - someone else who knows what they're doing.)
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post #13 of 15 Old 01-31-2012, 12:28 AM
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Personally, I'd try the snaffle first. That way you're not potentially sticking a harsher bit into a horse with a mouth that has never encountered it before (if that makes sense). If the snaffle doesn't work, you can always try the curb later.
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post #14 of 15 Old 01-31-2012, 12:31 AM
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Start with a snaffle. My preference is a regular loose ring snaffle with an iron mouth. They have the added bonus of being fairly cheap.
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post #15 of 15 Old 01-31-2012, 12:36 AM
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I agree with Drafty, a snaffle is the best place to start. If a horse has never had a curb on before, it can be overwhelming at first and can cause problems all it's own.
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