The Parelli Snap: Reason(s) for
The question of whether it's better to have a major brass snap like Parelli, or leave off all hardware on halters & ropes has been on the back burner of my mind for a long time, since I've gone with PNH & own the lead with snap. I just watched another horseman on youtube give 4 good reasons to forego a snap, & on the other side, the only reasons I can think of to have a snap are to facilitate quick lead exchanges & to have an effective phase 4/under chin thunk. To have an effective phase 4 is necessary; yet I see other horseman who don't use snaps doing fine without them, so I'm thinking that a chin thunk with snap isn't the only effective phase 4, & perhaps not the best (sensitive nerves under chin can be damaged).
The 4 reasons I gleaned from the youtube video are:
1. snaps bang on horse's chin as he moved around.
2. snaps are unnecessary weight on the horse's head.
3. snaps impede training/communication: as they swing/flop around, they give confused signals to the horse when he's being handled, & their weight alone impedes precise & light signals.
4. snaps can break, causing injury to horse & human, aside from then requiring replacements.
I looked for explanation from PNH online & found none, & my Level 1 & 2 don't go into the reasons, either. I'm sure that somewhere Pat explains why he uses the snap, but couldn't find it!
Does anyone have any answers re: this issue?
Beyond their convenience for removing the leadline when needed, I see NO advantage to them and agree with the disadvantages you've listed.
So, what does one use as a phase 4 alternative?
Phase 4? If you are talking about hitting your horse under the chin with heavy a snap - I personally wouldn't. I know of someone who cracked teeth being hit with one of these snaps - I'd hate to do that to my horse if it accidentally hit wrong. There are plenty of other ways to train a horse without smacking them with a metal snap.
Now I do have a cotton rope tied directly to my rope halter for the lead line. This rope creates a fairly decent size knot when tied and I've bumped that under their chin before to get their attention when one of them was being an absolute snot and ignoring me. Never needed anything more in the name of training a horse.
Personally, I LOVE the snaps! Although I fully respect your opinions, I would like to voice my own too :)
1 - Snaps will only bang on the horses chin if the person handling the rope isn't using it properly
2 - I find the parelli snaps are no heavier than any other snaps I've used
3 - The parelli snap helps communication imo, the swivel avoids the rope tangling around & tightening.
4 - All snaps can break :P
I think all the disadvantages listed here can apply to all snaps & buckles, but personally I've found my parelli one to be the bee's knees :D
I personally don't like it when I see people smash a huge chunk of metal into a horses face...
I have a Stacy Westfall rope halter and lead, I LOVE it!
most tools can be abusive, and most tools can be used to communicate effectively without abuse. Use what suits you.
the point about the swivel turning to avoid the rope twisting tighter is one I never thought about. The snap swivels are convenient.
For me, I think I might like the finesse to give a good energetic toss down the rope without actually causeing the hrose to grow fearful of it eventually. But I know folks with finesse don't have any trouble.
I was watching a leg restraint video by an Australian trainer last week and he used the Parelli type lead rope. His reason wasn't for cueing but safety. He went on to state that the majority of buckles & snaps are made from recycled metals and have a high incidence of stress failure. That made me start thinking and I have had several leads with varying type snaps fail over the years. However, they were medium in size and not the really large ones. The one thing I really liked about the leads he recommended was that the rope pulled through the snap ring and back braided into the lead.
I've continued to research, & one poster on another board explained that the Parelli halter has such a long nosepiece in order to prevent the snap from making contact with the chin at phase 4! It does have a longer nosepiece than other rope halters, so perhaps this is indeed the reason for it. It's something that didn't come across in L1-2 dvd's, because I'm sure it wasn't mentioned; all that was done was the teaching to send life down the rope to cause the snap to hit the fence! So, it's easy to assume the horse'll be hit with your phase 4 when halter's on him. Now that I'm corrected on that assumption,:) I'll no doubt have to ask Linda herself if the intention is to make contact or not.
Another poster mentioned that the weight of the brass snap helps the horse to feel the release, like the idea of slobber straps giving clarity with light reins. I can see the sense of that, too.
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