Originally Posted by candandy49
I appreciate your hesitance to use an o-ring snaffle. I have seen what your saying about the o-ring snaffles causing pinching. In those instances I have seen the pinching caused by improper fitting bits usually with a to short a bit from ring to ring for the horse's mouth. Both English and Western bits come in 4-1/2 inch up to 5+ inch widths. Even tho the side-pull itself may help you and your horse a lot you might investigate the various widths of snaffle bits. Trust me, I am not questioning your being able to bit your horse, but just offering up suggestions.
Not taking offense at all, suggestions welcome and appreciated. Just sharing my personal experience
Originally Posted by smrobs
I think I might need to clarify about putting miles on him. I don't mean on a nice leisurely trail ride where it is mostly walk and a little bit of trot and lope. I mean that everywhere you go is at a long trot or a lope. He should be sucking air pretty hard long before you get done. I also wouldn't even attempt riding with more than 1 or 2 people until you really get some handle on him mainly because it is too dangerous for the other riders. That's one of the reasons why it is so hard to find someone to ride with me, normally I will lope for a mile or more and then slow down to a long trot while they get a bit of air back, then back up to a lope we go and I keep that up for up to 5 or more miles, depending on the horse.
It's amazing how quickly they forget about acting stupid when they are focusing on trying to get enough oxygen.
This is a new train of thought for me, I have always (maybe because I tried to keep barrel horse from turning into hot messes) been the type to ride at a walk or slow trot. I have always had the mind perception that you can always speed a horse up its slowing them down that can be the problem.
Now when I work in the arena I will trot and lope around just to get the same movement off my legs at those paces as I do when they are at a walk, reinforce the WHOA! Work on sliding stops etc etc. I havent done so outside of the arena. I am going to try this, since he is not going to be a barrel horse and I don't fear him getting too hot its something I never even considered. I just took a peak at your blog and I was on an older post about letting a horse yeild to pressure of the reins on their own. WHAT AN EXCELLENT IDEA!! I am going to do this tonight. Just to try and get him to soften up a bit. I am still healing from torn muscles in my shoulder and back from getting dumped two times in one day (the infamous week 3 training where they don't wanna and buck) So I am taking it a little easier than normal but I am still going to work him as much as physically possible.