Let it Rein

A pretty little blog about all things reining and racing, with some other equestrian sports highlighting every once in a while. Got questions or comments? Please feel free to ask! I don't bite, I promise!

— I’m sorry about this guys, but the tumblr equestrian community needs to see this from someone:

This is a training aid. It’s not a weapon of mass destruction that will kill your horse if you put it in his mouth. Some horses don’t need this much bit, some do. This bit is not even is strong as some of the ones we have on the ranch. Now I wouldn’t give someone with ‘strong’ hands this bit, but if you had a beginner who was hesitant about touching their mouth and didn’t like to pull, this bit would be fine - a perfect solution, even, because they wouldn’t overuse the mouthpiece, and it would give them the extra strength needed with a certain horse. 

Spurs are also not a weapon of mass destruction that no one would ever use on their horse unless they are a mean, abusive rider. Listen up: These just help us get the point across. We don’t constantly have these jabbed into their ribs, beating them up with the ‘sharp, pointy’ (rightt… how sharp and pointy do these look?) rowels. These are used sparingly, and are just part of the training process mentioned above…

What I find most english people don’t understand is the difference in the way we reiners ride compared to them. Yes, you may use a plain D-Ring snaffle on your horse ‘and he goes around like an angel!’, but the truth is, the idea with english is contact with the mouth - not pulling and jerking, but contact, and helping them along, we call it baby-sitting. Reiners don’t babysit. We have a very black and white process of training, whereas english tends to be a bit more lenient and ‘grey’. We say, “This is how you are supposed to do it.” and then let go completely - no contact with the mouth, reins looped. We wait for them to make the mistake, and then correct it strongly. After we have corrected, we let go again. The horse learns that way. 

I mean no disrespect to english riders and trainers, because I understand that your training methods work too. But I don’t think they would work on our horses with what we ask them for - remember, a reiner’s biggest year is when he was three, and most superstars are retired by six. Most english horses aren’t ‘big-time’ horses until they are at least six.