Holy big bits! - Page 5 - The Horse Forum
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post #41 of 77 Old 05-16-2013, 07:59 PM
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For those who are interested in learning more about Spades and that style of training look up "Classical Californio Horsemanship" on Facebook. It is a closed group but ask to join. Bruce Sandifer has neat little videos and there are some good reads and information if you feel like wading through some of the other stuff.
I like Martin Black but he doesn't offer a whole lot of info or videos on his website although there are links to some of his articles.

Also, I haven't heard from Wanstrom either. She had a lot going about the time she vanished and plus it is spring time, a very busy time of year if your ranching/cowboying :)

I DON'T LEAD 'EM AND FEED 'EM, I RIDE 'EM AND SLIDE 'EM.
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post #42 of 77 Old 05-16-2013, 09:16 PM
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Originally Posted by COWCHICK77 View Post
For those who are interested in learning more about Spades and that style of training look up "Classical Californio Horsemanship" on Facebook. It is a closed group but ask to join. Bruce Sandifer has neat little videos and there are some good reads and information if you feel like wading through some of the other stuff.
I like Martin Black but he doesn't offer a whole lot of info or videos on his website although there are links to some of his articles.
WHY did you never tell ME about this! =P
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post #43 of 77 Old 05-16-2013, 09:23 PM
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I believe Wanstrom was about to have a baby herself, too bad she disappeared, I want to see baby pics!
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post #44 of 77 Old 05-16-2013, 09:35 PM
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WHY did you never tell ME about this! =P
Super secret Facebook stuff *eyeroll*, as if anything on FB is secret

I DON'T LEAD 'EM AND FEED 'EM, I RIDE 'EM AND SLIDE 'EM.
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post #45 of 77 Old 05-16-2013, 11:07 PM
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Originally Posted by COWCHICK77 View Post
For those who are interested in learning more about Spades and that style of training look up "Classical Californio Horsemanship" on Facebook. It is a closed group but ask to join. Bruce Sandifer has neat little videos and there are some good reads and information if you feel like wading through some of the other stuff.
I like Martin Black but he doesn't offer a whole lot of info or videos on his website although there are links to some of his articles.

Also, I haven't heard from Wanstrom either. She had a lot going about the time she vanished and plus it is spring time, a very busy time of year if your ranching/cowboying :)
I just have a hard time understanding it since it looks the equivalent of a ratcheter on a ratchet strap with the spoon spade type thing going into the horse's mouth.. it looks crazy. I cannot comprehend why this is a good thing.

"Strength is the ability to use a muscle without tension"
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post #46 of 77 Old 05-17-2013, 12:11 AM
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I just have a hard time understanding it since it looks the equivalent of a ratcheter on a ratchet strap with the spoon spade type thing going into the horse's mouth.. it looks crazy. I cannot comprehend why this is a good thing.
It can be intimidating looking, but think in these terms- when you hold a spade bit in your hand much how it would lay in the horses mouth and on the tongue, the braces, cannon bar and spoon all together can distribute pressure over a large area. BUT, the bit is NEVER to be pulled on, I can not stress that enough. Another way to look at is, what would feel better to you should I try to poke in the chest with one finger or the palm/flat of my hand? Again, not meant to be pulled but you see how easy it would be hold it in their mouth.

One can tell if the horse likes the bit and accepts it readily if he will hold it in his mouth without the use of any headgear. One of our horses loves a Grijalva spade we have, you can walk out in the pasture and stick in his mouth without a headstall and he will hold it on his own accord while playing with the cricket, eyes soft and relaxed. You stick another one in him and he will spit it out on the ground. Mouth conformation, preferences and natural headset do play a role since the horse has to find the balance in the bit(like FF was describing earlier, and why there are so many variations of these bits) and be comfortable, it has nothing to do with forcing a horse into position or using pain to create a desired response. It is about preservation of the mouth, signals-not pulls and balance.

I attached a couple of pics of hubby roping a bull calf on Zorro in a spade, not the best pics, but you can see he is on a loose rein, head is level but ears showing he's paying attention and no tail swishing. He is obviously not stressed about the bit or scared he is going to get his face yanked off.

It's not for everyone and I will never try to convince everyone that this is the only way to train horses. I just want people to understand that is not about pain and intimidation.

I DON'T LEAD 'EM AND FEED 'EM, I RIDE 'EM AND SLIDE 'EM.

Last edited by COWCHICK77; 12-06-2013 at 01:52 AM.
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post #47 of 77 Old 05-17-2013, 12:34 PM
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I know there is one member here that 'knows' her.....but they haven't heard from or got hold of her either.....
I don't know her personally but I have talked to her on the phone a couple of times and last just before she gave birth. I know her and her husband were planning on going up to high cow camp after the baby was born and would not have cell or internet coverage for several months. I believe they were planning on going up around the first week in May. I am planning a photo shoot with her. I hope all went well for her and her family.

Cheers!
Les


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post #48 of 77 Old 05-17-2013, 01:10 PM
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Originally Posted by Skyseternalangel View Post
I just have a hard time understanding it since it looks the equivalent of a ratcheter on a ratchet strap with the spoon spade type thing going into the horse's mouth.. it looks crazy. I cannot comprehend why this is a good thing.
Another thing alot of people don't realize with a spade is how long it take for the horse to even get to that point. The horse may be in just a hackamore for 2,3, or 4 years before it ever has that bit in its mouth. Even then it is still ridden with a smaller hackamore called a bosalito/ bosalita under the bit. It learns how to carry the bit and then gradually has more bit and less bosalito used. This may take another 2,3 or 4 years. Then the horse will be straight up with just the bit. However it may drop back to the two rein if it needs some refresher. As opposed to bitting up or using force. Like you see with other types of riding sometimes.

Also the horse is never tied by the reins, is not lead by the bridle reins. Just to preserve the mouth. Quite often they still wear the bosalito under the bridle with a get down rope so there is no need to lead the horse by the bridle reins.

The whole style is about the mouth of the horse and finesse. However it isnt for everybody and is also very easy to misuse if the rider doesn't have the hands for it. I do not. YET, but I'm working toward it. This is my goal for my horsemanship.
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post #49 of 77 Old 05-17-2013, 01:23 PM
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Les, thanks for letting us know! I was worried about her too.

Chick, love the pix . Love to see a good horse and cowboy doing their thing.

As for the whole "big bits" thing, most of them have their place (though there are some that I don't agree with using...ever...like tiny twisted wire with weighted rings or double twisted wire gags with long shanks and the like), but it all depends on the ability and needs of horse and rider. I can ride in a spade or a cathedral but I don't. Maybe it's just because I'm lazy, but I don't want to take the time to properly train a spade horse when most my horses handle almost as good in a simple curb bit. So, none of mine have ever been trained for the bigger bits.

I have an incredible amount of respect for those that take the time and have the ability to turn out a good bridle horse.

I see the OP's point though, it's not just the bits, but the person they are being sold by that causes me to cringe because I've seen how he uses them.
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Always remember that feeling of looking at a big, open country over the ears of a good horse, seeing a new trail unwind ahead of you, and that ever-spectacular view from the top of the ridge!!! Follow my training blog: http://robertsontraining.blogspot.com/
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post #50 of 77 Old 05-17-2013, 01:44 PM
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Originally Posted by Fort fireman View Post

Also the horse is never tied by the reins, is not lead by the bridle reins. Just to preserve the mouth. Quite often they still wear the bosalito under the bridle with a get down rope so there is no need to lead the horse by the bridle reins.
I never ever tie by the reins, but I didn't realize or even think about leading by the reins when they get to that stage.
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