Originally Posted by RiosDad
I definitely do hate tie downs. A horse trips and throws it's head to rebalance itstelf.. You are totally limiting his ability in the event of a slip. Don't go near water either. Horses can not swim with a tie down.
A standing martingale is the same thing. A band around the nose and a strap running down the chest and between the front legs holding the horses head down. Ropers use them alot. They have been around forever.
Have a horse fall and do a head over heals thing with that and you end up with a dead horse from a broken neck.
Do most of you know the difference between a running and a standing martingale????
Please read the text and look at the pictures again.
I use the tie-down nose part, but if you look, there is no strap between the breast collar and the tie-down, I've just put the reins in the nose part and use that instead of a bit/bridle.
So, what I end up with is a stupidly gentle 'bridle' that can't force the horse to pretty much anything, but can give him clear signals of what I want him to do, and together with a lot of focus on my seat and leg-aids, can get a good riding. That I tend to cheat with otherwise by picking the reins in good and bad times.
And yes, a running martingale only affects the horse when you pull the reins, a standing martingale always stop the horse from throwing the head up, even without reins.
I don't use anything like that, if I get a problem with a horse I personally prefer a combination with a stronger bit as an emergency break, and the regular bit as the one I actually use (i.e. Loose reins on the strong bit at all times unless it's a dangerous situation
), if anything extra at all, that is. But I havn't needed that. First and foremost it's good training that's important, not the use of extra tools. Which is why I see pride in being able to ride my horse decently with this ''soft bosal'' made by a tie-down, or the equal of a standing martingale, instead of a bridle and without actually tying the nose down.
Putting extra straps and ''inventions'' rarely ever help the problem, it just teaches the horse to ''cheat'' to get away from it. Riding a horse well comes from the seat, not the straps or by putting harsher bits in if the horse doesn't obey the gentle ones (unless in emergencies caused by the disobedience/confused horse, it's not good riding if you need to use the sharp bit then, but it's survival. Also, changing to a harsh bit to get a more clear answer from a horse -that works well with a regular bit but can benefit from the different signals in another bit that happens to be more severe- is also a different thing. Then it's not correcting a problem or forcing, but guiding the horse and showing it in a different way.