Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Oak Hills CA, High Desert
• Horses: 0
I use a full check snaffle with Christy and we both love it. I say both, because she will willingly pick it up in her mouth to be bridled. And doesn't mind haveing the bit at all. She is also much more responsive with this bit than the tom thumb she previously had. Watch the eggbutt, some of them pinch. Take the bit in your hand, and move it around, see if the edges/corners pinch. If they pinch you, they can pinch the horse.
For suppleness, I like to stretch them. From the ground I have them bend their head to where my foot would be if I were in the saddle. First on one side, then I move to the other side and do the same thing. Three times. If I am in the saddle, I do this also, three times, pull the head around to my toe, first to the left, then to the right. It helps to flex their neck muscles, and helps to teach them to give to pressure. I also do this exercise that is designed to teach the horse to give to pressure, and it flexes them around. With a long lead, move the rope from one side of the horse around their butt to the other side, go up to their head, and gently pull. The horse learns to bend away from you and toward the pull then bends all the way around until he/she is facing you. Well, at least it works with Christy. I'm sure there are many other exercises too. These are the ones I use.