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Re: Any English riders out there?

Lynette -

> Does Wintec have a website? What catalogs do you get? All my catalogs,
> exect for Millers are western.

Try and - State Line's site is
lousy, but you can request a catalog from there, which is better than
their site.  I believe they both sell their mailing lists, so you should
soon have a ton of stuff come in the mail.  Also, if you subscribe to
Practical Horseman (an english riding mag) you will soon be flooded.

> > Cinches, or rather "girths" are something you choose based on your
> > horse's preference.  Katee of Advantage Saddlery has good mohair
> > girths--as long as you're riding in an area that doesn't have burrs.
Both State Line & Dover have great selections of girths.

Also, regarding girths/cinches, you will likely find that over distance
& time a somewhat looser girth is FAR less likely to cause injury.  In
fact, it may be that loosening up your girth a bit will take care of the
troubles you're having now.
> I started my arab, Apache, on the little S hackamore. He went great in
> it in the first year. But them he figured out he could do what ever he
> wanted in it. So I steadily lost control. He was young at the time. So
> I switched to a twisted snaffle bit that I had. He goes pretty good in
> that, but he gets sores from the bit on the corners of his mouth, I
> have to put vet wrap on the bit to keep from soring him. So he has a
> very sensitive mouth, and I need a different bit. He absolutly hates
> the curb bits that I have tried on him. Fights me every step of the
> way.

Here is my thought about bits in general ... regardless of what you use,
it's not the BIT that stops the horse, it's the hands.  If a given bit
loses its effectiveness, then the rider needs to use it differently.  A
horse becomes numb to the AIDS, not the bit.  A horse becomes heavy on
the bit because of heavy hands, and light on the bit because of light

Even so, every once in a while it happens that the rider needs to change
bits for retraining purposes.  Even sensitive hands sometimes need a
little different type of tool to do the job.  In that case, it's my
opinion that the horse is best served by changing the pressure points,
not increasing the pressure at the same points.  IOW, change from a
french link to a mullen (or vice versa) - a single jointed full cheek to
a kimberwicke - a copper dee ring to a baucher - a bit to an S hack -
the idea is that there are about a bazillion mild bits to choose from
without having to resort to a slow twist (pain) or a double wire (also
pain).  If you don't TRAIN the horse to respond, then it's only a matter
of time before he begins to run through the pain of the harsher bit.  Of
course, I'm a minimalist, but in the end it's like spanking a toddler: 
after a while it doesn't work any more, and you have to up the ante.

Good luck on the great bit hunt ... every horse has a favorite.

-Abby B

* * *
Abby Bloxsom
ARICP Certified Instructor
Level III Recreational and Distance Riding
Colebrook, CT USA

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