I'd like to ride my boy in a hackamore for endurance so that he can eat and drink freely. I don't know a lot about hackamores though... Currently, I've got him in a Zilco halter/bridle combo and have him in a hackamore just this and he does great (and likes it better than the bit!):
However, I've seen a lot of endurance riders use a S hackamore and I really like the hackamores Zilco makes - it'd be nice to have one that matches the rest of his tack. My biggest concern about hackamores is their reputation for being quite severe if pulled on too hard, and he does great in a halter (but I don't want to ride in one), so I don't necessarily need something severe. They've got three styles, one like what I've already got, the S hackamore I've seen quite a few riders using, and a flower hackamore. Any suggestions on which to go with or what the differences are between these??
Similar to what I already have:
S hackamore I've seen used:
I found out some more information about these from another website. Here'w what it has to say about each style:
Standard hackamore (the first one like I have):
Blair's Pattern mechanical hackamore that operates on a leverage system to exert poll, nose and curb pressure. There is no mouthpiece. Stainless Steel. Padded, contoured design with PVC waffle lining to create gentle action. The hackamore works via pressure points on the face, nose and chin.
Hackamores act via pressure points on the face, nose and chin. The "S" shaped cheek of this model helps to reduce the severity of the hackamore's action when compared with the standard pattern. The cheek shape also allows easier drinking and eating when bridled. Stainless Steel shanks with padded, contoured PVC waffle nosepiece and synthetic chin strap.
Hackamores act via pressure points on the face, nose and chin. The unique cheek design of this model allows for multiple adjustment to increase or decrease poll pressure. Stainless Steel shanks with padded, contoured PVC waffle nosepiece and synthetic chin strap.
I think I'm leaning toward the S or the Flower hackamore... Probably the S because the design makes it easier to drink and it seems less severe. I've seen people write goot things about S hackamores.
Dream goes in an s-hack. I love it.
But like anything on their face, so much of if it works or not depends on the hands holding the reins and the horse wearing it!!
Phantomhorse - what brand of S hack do you use? I have been wanting to try one on my mare, but I have a hard time finding things that are small enough for her dainty face! She currently has a standard hack like the one in Jilly's first pic, but even with extra holes punched in the strap, it's slightly too big. I see that some sites market "Arabian S hackamores" but they all seem to have the rough rope nose, and I think my girl would really resist that :(
My current one is from Taylored Tack:
but my original one came from Moss Rock Endurance:
Dream doesn't have the most *ahem* typey face, so size has never been an issue for us. Mandy from Taylored Tack can/will customize things to your horse, so it will def fit. I know Teddy from Running Bear also carries several diff types of s-hack, so may also be able to help make sure you get something size-appropriate.
Thanks! I will definitely look into those sites. I really appreciate the info :)
I use a bosal hackamore a lot of the time. It is comfortable if it has been broken in, plus the long mecate reins double as a lead rope which I really enjoy. It leaves her mouth wide open to eat when I let her.
In the second photo I was holding onto the mecate and she was grazing. It's nice because the mecate can be adjusted to be super long and the reins super short or vice versa. The only thing is that your horse needs to be able to accept the bosal. They are a different way to ride, but I find that my horse loves hers as much as she loves her bit.
I had one of those bosals that I used on an Arab gelding that I used to ride. I quit using it because it did rub his face on the top. His head was really tiny and that might be part of the reason. Another thing is that on occasion he would go a bit psycho with excitement on a trail and he probably bonked his nose on it. I have heard people say that they used them with no problem. Maybe it depends on the horse.
I've been using a side pull for the last year and love it. I find the mechanical hackamores can be harsh, I don't particularly care for them. the bosal is expensive, you have to learn how to use it properly and it needs to be fitted very well.
These are reasonably inexpensive, look really sharp and work well. I've started riding several horses in it and they all love it and took to it really well.
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