What bit should I use to teach my horse to neck reign? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 4 Old 09-18-2010, 06:12 PM Thread Starter
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Question What bit should I use to teach my horse to neck reign?

I want to teach my horse to neck reign and I thought I could do it with the bit I have now, a full cheek snaffle. However, from what I am hearing I need to switch to a curb to be able to teach her more effectively? If that is correct what kind of curb should I get? Thank you! Pictures are great too if you have them.

Oh and how do you teach a horse to neck reign? (guess I should have asked this before. ;)
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post #2 of 4 Old 09-18-2010, 06:19 PM
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You can certainly start training in a snaffle. I find its best. Better than throwing them on a bit they don't understand. Heres how I teach mine to neck rein.

There was a really great article in Western Horseman about teaching to neck rein. It was super informative and emphasizes going slow. The trainer recommends doing your neck rein training at the end of a session...like in a cool down. Heres how he explained it. (I've been using a similar method for years and it does work!)

Start two handed. Pick up your outside rein and lay it against the horses neck. Dont pull. With the outside rein *and* fingers, push to the inside.
If the horse responds, praise like he just won the olympics. If he doesnt, add some leg. If he still doesn't respond, gently pull the inside direct rein. As soon as the horse tips his nose, release the pressure and start back with the outside rein.

Neck reining can take a while for horses to learn. Some need refresher courses pretty frequently just to keep the neck reining tight.

Once you have him neck reining pretty well on a snaffle, it may be time to consider a curb. Wait for him to be ready though.
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post #3 of 4 Old 09-18-2010, 06:32 PM
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You really shouldnt have to use any type of bit. Its probably easier to start in a hackamore. They learn off of pressure in their neck not their mouth. At least this is how I do it. Sometimes if you dont know what your doing, you can hurt their mouth and cause soreness. If you use a hackamore take outside rein, lay over neck, and tug on the inside to right/and then do the left. Each time making sure to emphasis the rein on the neck when you go to turn. You can even try this on the ground with a halter and lead. Take your lead lay it over the neck and gently pull til you get the right response. He/she may fight it but just keep trying. I've got all the info in my head but to get it on here is almost impossible. For every little try from your horse to do the right thing release and do it again. Reward is the release.
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post #4 of 4 Old 09-18-2010, 06:35 PM
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All mine are started in a snaffle and by the time they are moved into a curb bit they know who to neck rein. They start learning from day one. Also neck reining is not just about the reins it is also about your seat and legs.

Lay the rein on the horses neck then use the direct rein right after the outside rein hits the neck. This will teach the horse to move away from pressure.

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