Progressing to a curb for showing - The Horse Forum
LinkBack Thread Tools
post #1 of 33 Old 08-20-2013, 05:56 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Chino Valley, AZ
Posts: 15,915
• Horses: 1
Progressing to a curb for showing

Ok. So I didn't get my butt in gear soon enough to show this year, so we're going to shoot for next year. I really want to show western pleasure at first, then move on to English and eventually cross country.

The problem is, Aires is four this year and will be five when next show season rolls around, so we won't be able to show in a snaffle anymore. I'm going to spend a few months getting all his cues and steering down, but then I'll need to move up.

So, what are suggestions for a transition bit and what we should end up in?
Posted via Mobile Device
DraftyAiresMum is offline  
Sponsored Links
post #2 of 33 Old 08-21-2013, 06:25 AM
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Scotland
Posts: 1,444
• Horses: 1
Surely for any type of English riding, you can use a snaffle to your heart's content. My horse has been in one her whole life. As the horse should be working on a contact, you would not want to use a curb.

A Western person will obviously have to explain how they transition the youngster from a snaffle to a curb. I haven't a clue, but I know those horses do not work on a direct contact and will be neck-reined.
thesilverspear is offline  
post #3 of 33 Old 08-21-2013, 11:44 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Chino Valley, AZ
Posts: 15,915
• Horses: 1
Oh, I know that in English we'll be using a full cheek French link snaffle, thesilverspear. Right now, he only direct reins, but in an effort to make him as well-rounded as possible, I want to work him western, too, so I'll be teaching him to neck rein.
Posted via Mobile Device
DraftyAiresMum is offline  
post #4 of 33 Old 08-21-2013, 12:17 PM
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Oregon
Posts: 427
• Horses: 0
In my opinion, you should really have a solid couple of months of neck reining down pat before you transition to a curb bit. The mechanics of a curb bit do not lend itself well to a lot of direct reining. Once the horse can neck rein well, I would suggest a medium shanked bit with a broken mouth piece and hinged shanks. This will give you a little bit of direct reining ability if needed to correct the horse.
sorral3 is offline  
post #5 of 33 Old 08-21-2013, 12:23 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Chino Valley, AZ
Posts: 15,915
• Horses: 1
I get how to progress through to a curb. Seriously, this ain't my first rodeo. Loll. Well, technically it's my first time training a horse from the ground up through saddle, but I know how to do it.

Can you post a link to the type of bit that you're talking about? I'm a very visual person.
Posted via Mobile Device
DraftyAiresMum is offline  
post #6 of 33 Old 08-21-2013, 12:31 PM
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Texas
Posts: 1,909
• Horses: 2
Once my colts were neckreining pretty well, I typically went to a bit like this, with short, curved shanks and a broken mouthpiece. I always started without the curb strap for a few rides while they adjust to some poll pressure and the different feel of a direct rein, then add in the additional jaw pressure of the curb strap.

This particular bit looks like it has the potential to pinch at the shank swivel, but I can't find pics of MY actual bit which I've had since the 90's. We always referred to it as a tear drop shank snaffle.
Cynical25 is offline  
post #7 of 33 Old 08-21-2013, 12:37 PM
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: East Central Illinois
Posts: 7,109
• Horses: 3
My favorite transition bit is a straight mouthed or mullen mouthed Pelham. You have the option to ride 2 reins or 4 reins and you can switch easily without changing bridles mid-schooling session. I prefer one with a chain curb chain. IF you use one, make sure to twist the chain clockwise until it links smooth, and then you adjust so that you can fit 2 fingers in between his head behind his chin and the curb chain.

A Jack and Three Queens, the latest book by James C. Dedman,
Hope that you fall in love with "Trot", like I did!
Corporal is offline  
post #8 of 33 Old 08-21-2013, 12:38 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Chino Valley, AZ
Posts: 15,915
• Horses: 1
Thanks! That makes sense as a transition bit. I also like the dog bone mouthpiece, as he prefers a three piece snaffle. I'm sure I can find something like that at one of my local tack stores, too.

Corporal, are you suggesting a Pelham to transition into a western curb?
Posted via Mobile Device

Last edited by DraftyAiresMum; 08-21-2013 at 12:40 PM.
DraftyAiresMum is offline  
post #9 of 33 Old 08-21-2013, 01:19 PM
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: southern Arizona
Posts: 9,559
• Horses: 4
Here are two that seem to get a good response from my mare:

Jr Cowhorse:

Shank ratio is about 1.25 to 1, so not a big change from a snaffle. Mia likes to play with the copper roller.

I believe this is a version of a Billy Allen:

It has a 1.75 to 1 ratio, but the design makes direct reining easy to do, yet it also has the firmness side to side to give good neck reining cues. At least, I think Mia neck reins better in it that in a snaffle. Both allow the sides to swivel out, which is a cue Mia has always listened to well. I haven't seen any indication that either pinches her lips.

If I could only own one, I'd probably go with the bottom design. It seems to get a cleaner response out of my horse, if that makes any sense.
Corporal likes this.

"Make the right thing easy and the wrong thing...well, ignore it mostly."
bsms is online now  
post #10 of 33 Old 08-21-2013, 01:24 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Chino Valley, AZ
Posts: 15,915
• Horses: 1
That makes sense, bsms. I think I might go with either the Jr Cowhorse or the bit Cynical posted to start out with, then progress up to something like the second on you posted once he gets comfortable with neck reining.
Posted via Mobile Device
DraftyAiresMum is offline  

Quick Reply

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the The Horse Forum forums, you must first register.

Already have a Horse Forum account?
Members are allowed only one account per person at the Horse Forum, so if you've made an account here in the past you'll need to continue using that account. Please do not create a new account or you may lose access to the Horse Forum. If you need help recovering your existing account, please Contact Us. We'll be glad to help!

New to the Horse Forum?
Please choose a username you will be satisfied with using for the duration of your membership at the Horse Forum. We do not change members' usernames upon request because that would make it difficult for everyone to keep track of who is who on the forum. For that reason, please do not incorporate your horse's name into your username so that you are not stuck with a username related to a horse you may no longer have some day, or use any other username you may no longer identify with or care for in the future.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.

Old Thread Warning
This thread is more than 90 days old. When a thread is this old, it is often better to start a new thread rather than post to it. However, If you feel you have something of value to add to this particular thread, you can do so by checking the box below before submitting your post.

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Suggestions for a curb bit please, just because Emmy will need a curb to show Golden Horse Horse Tack and Equipment 13 04-20-2013 04:11 PM
Progressing in Training Lexiie Horse Training 4 09-19-2012 10:10 PM
Ready for summer and things to start progressing forward! Klassic Superstar Horse Talk 0 04-18-2012 12:22 PM
Progressing to a bigger horse goodcallsenator Horse Riding 0 08-07-2010 01:18 PM
Training Fancy ~ Groundwork is progressing great!! CopperHorse Horse Training 3 04-08-2009 09:28 PM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome