RBEI MASTER COURSES: EQUINE MANAGEMENT: GEAR 3
USING THE WRONG GEAR CAN BE YOUR UNDOING
It very much needs to be made clear how gear can be your undoing. I see it every day. Good people with good intentions who use the wrong gear which unwittingly causes them major issues.
There is so much gear that is commonly accepted for use with horses which is not only completely unnecessary, but actually hinders, upsets or damages horses.
If you are taking responsibility for your own actions around horses all you should need is the very basic, effective, kind gear as seen below:
RECOMMENDED GEAR TO USE
The above halters are the best type of halter to buy, one that buckles up around the nose simply and around the head simply.
Avoid the ones with moving loops to clip the lead onto, if it moves, how is your horse to feel any signal from you, avoid ones that don't unbuckle over the top of the nose, this is necessary in many instances such as getting teeth done, slipping halters off under bridles etc.
Never wear a halter under a bridle while riding, the halter will pinch where the bit sits. Never wear it over, it interferes with the natural feel of the bridle and it's effectiveness.
Avoid the ones that have a clip under neath by the cheek, this digs in and annoys horses.
Avoid ones that are thin ropes with knots, these dig in and annoy horses majorly.
This is the recommended best lead on the market. Stiff non stretch, light weight nylon. If a lead stretches you will find yourself thinking your horse is pulling all the time, it's just your signals are being absorbed into the leads stretch. These are the hands down best leads.
The 'Puffer Pad" is the all time best saddle blanket on the market. There are no others that even compare. Other saddle blankets don't have anywhere near enough padding to keep horses comfortable under the saddle. I often use x 2 puffer pads.
The best saddles to get are the lightweight nylon or suede Wintec / Bates saddles. They are the most comfortable, lightweight and best shaped for your horse and you. I prefer the older nylon or suede models rather than stiff leather ones which are heavier and more rigid. Horses love these saddles and so do riders :)
Stock saddles tend to be heavy and therefore give your horse a sore back, they also hinder riding skill. If you have to use a stock saddle again Wintec / Bates is the preferred brand for quality and comfort. But I would go x 2 puffer pads under a stock saddle.
This is the best type of girth. They are called luxury girths. They are padded, comfortable and stuff doesn't stick to them. Be careful with sheepskin covers which attract grass seeds, burs etc. Avoid thin harsh girths and make sure buckles & joins aren't protruding causing discomfort.
Always use this bit, the Eggbutt Snaffle bit. It is the kindest and least annoying. Avoid loose ring snaffle bits as they tend to pinch the corners of the mouth.
This is the best bridle, with a Cavesson noseband, avoid any horrid nosebands that clamp mouths shut etc, how would you feel if someone tied your mouth shut tightly? The Cavesson noseband should sit very loosely like a halter does. Nosebands are unnecessary also if you want to ditch them altogether from your bridle. They are just there for show. I would like to see bitless bridles on the market which are as comfortable as a halter is. However this is not the case presently.
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