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Jumping4Fun 11-20-2012 07:29 PM

Bit's and Bitting
ok so a friend has a 13.3hh pony for her 10yo daughter. The pony has done everything under the sun and the only problem is that when they do showjumping the pony gets strong and is difficult to pull up (she has jumped 1.10m competitively with old owner). The pony has always been ridden in a snaffel but we were thinking about putting a spanish D on her for showjumping?.....any advice would be appreciated :-)

gottatrot 11-21-2012 08:12 AM

Interesting, I thought I'd heard most of the bit terms by now but I've never heard it called a "Spanish D." Seems to be an older term for a Kimberwicke?

I would have to say, "It depends," on whether I would advise using one. My first concern would be whether a ten year old could use one without having the chain constantly activated. When I ride in a Kimberwicke, I keep the chain loose enough that I can ride with light contact and use it as a snaffle, and the only time the chain comes into play is when I shorten the reins considerably.

First I would consider that it is not a bit problem, but that the pony needs more schooling over grids and work on slowing down with this particular rider. Pony might be going, "Yee haw, it's like having no rider at all!"

Second, I would consider that the child has not learned how to properly use her seat and lower legs to give her leverage. A tiny person cannot use their arms alone and stop a strong pony. She needs to learn how to have a strong seat that will not be pulled off balance. She also needs to learn how to use her reins properly and not have them loose until just after the jump and then try to pull up the horse frantically. Or to ride the pony's mouth. And how to brace one rein against a pony's neck and use the other strongly when said pony runs away.

If the child does not have these basics, she should not be jumping in shows yet. IMO.

gottatrot 11-21-2012 08:15 AM

Forgot to say...but if you have a really great little rider with an independent seat, good hands and a really naughty pony, the Kimberwicke will be very helpful. Having a tiny bit of leverage and the curb chain will help with a horse that is just too excitable and strong.

poppy1356 11-21-2012 09:00 AM

Are they legal to show in? I always thought they wern't. Anyways unless this 10 year old is one heck of a rider I wouldn't put a kimberwicke in their hands.

Sounds like they just need help from a trainer. If the previous owner did fine with a snaffle it seems it is due to rider error.

Jumping4Fun 11-26-2012 03:24 AM

Thanks guys, the girl is quite a balanced rider and is good with her seat and legs.
The previous rider was 15yrs and was a bit bigger so she could use her weight a bit more....the pony only gets too strong towards the last 3-4 jumps and because she has gone from jumping decent hights to now jumpig 50cm i think she just sees it as a bit of a game.

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