So, I took y'all's guys advice and tried a bit with one of my mares that I've never ridden in one (kicker, the grey). You can see her pictures at http://www.horseforum.com/horse-conformation-critique/grey-qh-conformation-pedigree-hoof-questions-140140/page2/#post1716458.
Anyway, she has always been ridden in a hackamore/bosal/halter or something bitless. Before I got her, she was trained in a snaffle I believe.
I had an egg butt and the barn and tried riding it with her, after making sure the fit was correct and everything. She hates it. She just doesn't respond to it as well as a halter and I'm guessing its because that is what she is used to.
Anyway, I took her out to find some cows this morning and left the rope halter on under her bridle. Whenever she would take off or want to go, I would stop her with the bit, and it took a little while longer than normal. She normally isn't a super responsive horse like Sugar, but we are working on that. But, I stopped her once with the halter (one rein) and she slammed on the breaks.
How can I transition into a bit better? People say their horses respond better, but my horse def doesn't at all.
I didn't train this horse myself so I don't know much about her prior training.
This may be vague, so feel free to ask clarifying questions.
Also... This is odd.. But whenever I ride her she will turn around and lick my foot or the stirrup. She does it once or twice whenever we ride, but she did it more than often today with the bit. I'm wondering if its just a nervous habit... Anyone else's horses do this?
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