Switching Bits - From Tom Thumb to D-Ring Snaffle - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 17 Old 11-15-2011, 09:35 PM
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Well, I am a firm LOVER of tom thumbs. Or at least argentine snaffles, cowboy snaffles, whatever you want to call them. So I wouldn't change from what works just because someone on the internet says so.

For jumping, how about a pelham? Very similar to a tom thumb, but you can also use a snaffle rein if you want.

I (gasp) have been known to direct rein in curb bits, including tom thumbs. Gaited people do this a lot, so it is no unheard of. I just trail ride, but I do have friends from the gaited world, and they direct rein in a curb. Gently of course. I would rather ride with finesse in a curb than have to pull a horse around in a snaffle. But, it could be hard to ride with finesse in a curb while jumping, so I understand that too. A jointed pelham, maybe with the roundings to make it one-reined, would be the best suggestion I can come up with.

(Donning flame suit now.)
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post #12 of 17 Old 11-15-2011, 10:08 PM
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PS. Here is a very interesting video from Myler. These people are riding two handed in curbs. The first horse is similar to what I find most horses reactions are to a regular snaffle (not always as extreme, but the horse's first instinct is to put their head in the air). Then with a curb, even two handed, their head drops. This has been my personal experience as well. This why I don't believe tom thumbs and curbs are bad. My horses have always done better in them. This also shows how they can be ridden two-handed.

Myler Bits | The Only Bitting System Solution You Will Ever Need | MylerBitsUSA.com

Now Myler does talk about tongue relief, so I know they are using more of a mullen or ported bit. Maybe that would be something to try with your horse as well.
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post #13 of 17 Old 11-15-2011, 10:12 PM
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Independent side action, with a rotating barrel, is the key to the Myler system and the two-handed reining cues.
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post #14 of 17 Old 11-15-2011, 10:18 PM
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Originally Posted by bubba13 View Post
Independent side action, with a rotating barrel, is the key to the Myler system and the two-handed reining cues.
I'm sure as they are very well thought out.

I do ride two handed in all sorts of curbs though, both with a broken and solid mouth. But a Myler curb is on my wish list.
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post #15 of 17 Old 11-16-2011, 01:41 AM
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I was going to suggest a pelham too- learn to ride with two reins (under the supervision of a trainer or other experienced horseperson) and use the snaffle rein most of the time, and the curb only if you need it. The bit should feel the same in the horse's mouth.
Also, I suggest getting a mouthpiece with independant side action- a myler would be awesome, but something like this, a Robart's pinchless ( Redirect Notice ) would also do the trick, and make the rein signals much more clear.
Good luck.

...you 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 #16 of 17 Old 11-16-2011, 09:45 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you for all of your advice! I have some great suggestions to go with now. I will keep you posted on what ended up working.
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post #17 of 17 Old 11-16-2011, 02:41 PM
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Trailhorserider - I am one of those gaited people who ride two handed and direct rein with a tom thumb! A TT is the only thing my MFT mare likes.
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