Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Sweden - the land of carrots and apples
(Tho since the noseband is soft, it forms after the nose = presses down more on the nostrils than the rawhide/sturdy versions. Besides, the padding/fleece does two things; prefent rubs on sensetive horses, and presses the nostrils down more ;) However.. no hackammore is pinching nostrils if it's placed on the right part of the nose. Yours looks about right :) The ''suffocating'' issue with hackamores is that they easily make the horse just break off in the neck and at the same time lock it's jaw = hard to breathe, especially on ponys with thick necks. Try clenching your teeth together and then pull your chin down, like a horse in a high rollkur frame. Same thing can happen with any bit, but a hot horse in a hackamore and with a nervous rider that pulls back, it's bound to happen. Only if the rider lets it tho, like with any bit :)
And the rawhide or bike chains have a more severe and clear contact on the top of the nose.
Anyway, you seem to have most of the info right, it's just that hackamores, also ''soft'' ones, ARE harsher than people thinks. They're effective and nice tools in the right hands and has been a relief to many horses as well - but they're strong, severe bits/bitless and you need to know that when using it. :)
And I've seen too many people changing from a soft, well working snaffle to a hackamore, only because they believe hackamores are gentler.. and then they're overjoyed when the horse bends the neck and breaks of at the third vertebrae instead of working correctly. :3
But hacks are very good in the right hands, and they certainly doesn't break the nose bone or anything if they're placed right, not even the sturdy ones.
Always keep your head up, but be careful to keep your nose at a friendly level.