You don’t need to use a bit in Straightness Training, but if you want to use one, than the choice and the size matters.
There are many different kinds of bits available.
The choice of the bridle depends on the purpose of the rider (competitions, classical equitation, western), personal preference and the training level of the horse.
My preference is a combination of a cavesson with a curb bit. With the cavesson I can ask for stelling and bending and the forward down position of head and neck. The curb has it’s function once I start to collect the horse and it helps the horse to develop the right topline muscles in collection.
Since I use a cavesson, I don’t use a snaffle bit, because both have the same function (asking for stelling/bending/forward down).
When you want to use a snaffle bit, a single jointed snaffle bit is recommended when you do Straightness Training, because when you use a double joint, there is a great risk that one of the joints squeezes the corner of the mouth when you ask for stelling/bending.
When measuring the bit a number of factors have to be considered:
- Does the horse have thick or thin lips?
- Do the lips have fleshy or very thick skin?
- How are the teeth placed?
- Does the horse have any teeth problems or wolf teeth?
- How high is his palate?
- Is the mouth wide or narrow?
- Does the horse have a thick or thin tongue?
Every mouth is different and you have to find a tailor made solution.
It’s never the bit, it’s always the human behind the bit
When it comes to bits, it’s never the bit that can be uncomfortable for the horse, it’a always the human behind the bit that create comfort or discomfort for the horse.
Check this article: It’s Always the Human behind the Tool >>
Wanna train without a bit?
Check out our cavesson, which is the essential training tool in Straightness Training: