Could a Waterford help him? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 10 Old 11-11-2011, 09:03 PM Thread Starter
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Could a Waterford help him?

So Rebel leans on the bit a lot. I was re-reading my bit book to see if there is something I could use to help him stop, and I read that the waterford mouthpieces are good for horses that have started leaning on the bit. Do you think if I rode him in that as a training aid, he would stop leaning?

I don't plan on "Resorting to gadgets", because I know someone is going to say something about that. I plan on getting something to "Bite" (For lack of a better term) him when he does it so when I go back to riding in our normal bit he will stop. I find he does this most noticeabley when we ride in our D ring snaffle.

Pssh.I didn't pick up the wrong lead
It's called a counter canter...
...A very advanced maneuver.
SorrelHorse is offline  
post #2 of 10 Old 11-11-2011, 09:16 PM
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In my opinion, putting him in a waterford IS resorting to gadgets. Proper use of leg seat and hands would teach the horse not to lean on the bit. He is heavy on the forehand while doing this.
Allison Finch is offline  
post #3 of 10 Old 11-11-2011, 09:25 PM Thread Starter
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I do believe to a certain extent your right, Allison, but if I just use it as a tool and am not relying on it all the time was kind of what I was getting at.

I can just work with him, then. I just had one of the waterford bits sitting around so I thought if that could help I would use it.

Pssh.I didn't pick up the wrong lead
It's called a counter canter...
...A very advanced maneuver.
SorrelHorse is offline  
post #4 of 10 Old 11-11-2011, 09:37 PM
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The problem with using the waterford to stop him from leaning on the bit is that it may not work - in which case, you now have a horse with an even harder mouth that doesn't mind leaning on harsh bit - putting you in a "what now?" position.

You'd be better off working on correcting the problem through training - half halt her when she starts leaning on the bit, also work to help engage her, ask her to ride in circles and serpentines, most horses have a harder time leaning on the bit when they are turning, bending and their attention is otherwise engaged in what you are doing.

"Riding: the art of keeping the horse between you and the ground."
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post #5 of 10 Old 11-11-2011, 09:46 PM Thread Starter
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Saddle - Thank you for the advice, but your post made me laugh, because EVERYONE called Rebel a girl Even my trainer who KNOWS he is a gelding calls him a girl. Poor guy. xD

Pssh.I didn't pick up the wrong lead
It's called a counter canter...
...A very advanced maneuver.
SorrelHorse is offline  
post #6 of 10 Old 11-11-2011, 10:01 PM
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It can't hurt to try it. If it doesn't work, it doesn't work. A Waterford is far from a "harsh" bit--it's not a thin twisted wire, for Pete's sake--it just hits different pressure points than the traditional mouthpiece. Now, you can't go jerking on it, and you will have to accomodate your riding to the new mouthpiece, but that shouldn't be so huge of a deal. If it doesn't help, take it back off.
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post #7 of 10 Old 11-12-2011, 12:31 AM
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Funny- I was watching my friends lesson this morning and her mare is doing the same thing and her trainer suggested a waterford...were trying it tomorrow.. hopefully it works!

The well-known saying “chestnut mare, beware!” is not completely without foundation. Some go further and add “chestnut Thoroughbred mare, beware!”
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post #8 of 10 Old 11-12-2011, 12:43 AM
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i used to jump my warmblood in the waterford leverage bit. i loved it. without question.
On flat days, i would hack him around in a snaffle. it was what worked best for him.

Life seems mighty precious when there's less of it to waste.
Oxer is offline  
post #9 of 10 Old 11-13-2011, 02:41 PM
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I'd try a thin snaffle with the twisted mouthpiece for only a week or two. It often help a horse lighten but it can also create a sore mouth. That's why it's not used for very long. Instead of that, you can get him to get his hindquarters underneath him better if you do turnbacks. Work about 6' off the rail at the canter then turn him toward the rail to reverse direction. He'll stop and that's ok. Just move him into a canter again. Then change direction toward the rail. The tight turn causes him to lighten on the front end and get his hiney under him. Once he realizes you're not asking him to run into the rail it will get smoother. Each time you feel him get heavy, turn him back. He'll likely need to do this half a dozen times or more each side before he starts to make the connection. Try to practise this daily for at least 3 days in a row while it's still fresh in his mind.

Last edited by Saddlebag; 11-13-2011 at 02:46 PM.
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post #10 of 10 Old 11-13-2011, 04:27 PM
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I also used a waterford leverage on my clyde cross for YEARS for leaning. It did help some , I think. However-if I knew then what I know now, I probably would have spent more time softening him, at least for ring work. I actually got so I used a waterfor d ring for ring work and a waterford gag for cross country. I never found it harsh, but the way it is made they cannot lean on it, since it is so jointed. No matter what the bit, pulling is really NOT the answer. More of a half halt works much better, IMO. Pull just until they lean-then drop them like a rock. If you don;t give them something to lean on, they cannot do it. But-again, I didn;t know all this when I started using the waterford, and he is too old to retrain. (plus I would actually have to ride him...... )

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