Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: southern Arizona
I used to use rope halters exclusively, but I've switched to using a bit. For basic riding, the halter is fine. However, if they get nervous - particularly my mare - I find the subtlety of the bit makes it easier to calm her down. A pinkie of pressure on each rein in synch when her shoulder goes forward, and in 5-6 strides she starts to relax. With a rope halter, I can't do that. Not with her. I also find the bit allows me to help her out more when she drops her shoulder in a turn.
"People can teach us the rules, but only horses can teach us the art of riding."