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I currently ride my mare in a curb bit - a solid bars, with medium port and a roller. I am looking for some advice on how this curb bit works in relation to barrel racing. I.e. what should I be prepare for - dropping her shoulder?

I am not looking to change this bit, she is hotter then hot, and quite fussy. This bit works well for her, and she works well in it. I am just looking for some advice on what to be prepared for. TYIA!!
 

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Can you post a picture of the bit? There are other factors other than it being a curb and the mouthpiece.
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The roller is meant to calm a horse's nerves, kinda like us chewing gum. It also can serve to cause a horse to salivate more and help keep the bit moist and thus, work better.
I would NOT encourage your mare to be this hot. You need to look into ways to calm her down. "Corporal" (Arabian, 1982-2009, RIP) was sensitive--I could go from 1-60 anytime I wanted to on him--but he could also mosey along at a nice walk, too, and THAT is what you want.
A non-broken mouthpiece curb works like a fulcrum, forcing the head to bend as you pull back on the reins bc the chain tightens. It is never the first bit for a horse. Horses will react by pulling against tension and young horses exposed to early to a curb, before that are trained to a bit, usually a simple snaffle, will throw their heads up, even into pain. Hope this helps.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thankyou for the reply. For the record, I do not encourage her to be hot - this is her temperment. This does not mean she is unresponsive or dangerous- by hot I mean she has a lot of energy - which I am ok with. This isn't her first bit, and she is well trained. I am just looking for what I can expect if I start to barrel racer her in this bit. TYIA
 

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so, you are asking how to make sure that the bit does not cuase her to move with a dropped shoulder, kind of "motorcycle" turning around the barrels, right?
 

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That bit is often called a "polo bit". Not commonly used on barrel horses, I usually see them used on older ranch horses that are not "bridle horses" but more of the old rock pounders, been there done that types.

Most barrel racers use a direct rein and bits that accommodate, the polo bit you pictured is typically used to neck rein.
 

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That bit is often called a "polo bit". Not commonly used on barrel horses, I usually see them used on older ranch horses that are not "bridle horses" but more of the old rock pounders, been there done that types.

Most barrel racers use a direct rein and bits that accommodate, the polo bit you pictured is typically used to neck rein.
What's a rock pounder?
 

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What's a rock pounder?
A good old ranch horse that, while he knows his business and can be counted on to be a good partner, is nothing fancy. Neither in looks or in comfort. Never very fast, unless they bolt. And many seem to have a quirk or two in their personality.

One might feel as is they have been "pounding rocks" after a work day on one of these. But they are priceless in their own way. Can usually be ridden in almost any bit. Any saddle. Long rope. Short rope. It doesn't matter.

That type often gets the moniker of "rock pounder." :)
 

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A good old ranch horse that, while he knows his business and can be counted on to be a good partner, is nothing fancy. Neither in looks or in comfort. Never very fast, unless they bolt. And many seem to have a quirk or two in their personality.

One might feel as is they have been "pounding rocks" after a work day on one of these. But they are priceless in their own way. Can usually be ridden in almost any bit. Any saddle. Long rope. Short rope. It doesn't matter.

That type often gets the moniker of "rock pounder." :)
ok, thanks, same as a "dough banger".
 

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Great explanation boots :)

Dough banger, I like it too, Ill have to remember that!
 

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dough banger might have a little more of a negative connotation that the horse is a not that good though, something that, though reliable is also a bit slow, not so responsive.
 

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The bit works on the bars, chin and poll. As you pull back, your signal is amplified (leverage bit) depending on how long the shanks are. The chain causes the bit to squeeze down harder on the horse's tongue and bars, compressing the chin as well.
If a horse is dropping the shoulder with this bit, it might be because the rider is pulling too hard and the horse is trying to evade the pressure by throwing his head to one side as he runs. The primary turning with a curb bit should be from neck reining, or indirect reining, not direct reining.
Pulling on one rein to steer the horse will create a twisting lever to the horse's jaw.
 

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dough banger might have a little more of a negative connotation that the horse is a not that good though, something that, though reliable is also a bit slow, not so responsive.
Oh, yeah.

Rock pounders might wear ya out, but they are looked on fondly, too, because of their dependability and forgiving nature. Their quirks are overlooked and excused and cussed like one would do for that one relative most of us have. :)
 
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