• Clare Long

(Full-Length) Bridles and Bits


Full Length Video Description Includes (In this order):


(Introduction):

(Wiggly pony, being obnoxious because I have cookies in my hand):

(Introducing Twirl):

(The Power of Treats):

(Hunter Bridles):

(Parts of the bridle):

(Don't forget to tuck everything in):

(Bridle positioning and adjustment/fit):

(Throat latch fit):

(Bit Fit):

(Working the bit and Weepy eyes):

(Full Cheek bits):

(Putting the bridle on):

(Taking the bridle off):

(A super easy Western Bridle):

(Clarity Blue, Sparkly nails):

(My new tack room, and Bridles and Bits in general):

(Dressage Bridles and Bits):

(Dover's Dressage Bridle):

(Crank Nosebands):

(Reins):

(Shanked bits, how to choose the least severe):

(Western Shanked Bits, how to choose the least severe):

(Happy Mouth Bits):

(Full Cheek Happy Mouth Bits):

(Bit sizes in general):

(Western Bridles):

(Different fasteners: Buckles vs Screws):

(Pony bridle and bit):

("Pony Club" Trick to undoing "do-dad" english bridle hooks):

(A super easy Western Bridle):

(The War Bridle):

(General Conclusion):


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(Introduction):

"Okay.

Today's a new day of videotaping.

Beautiful Anna behind the camera as usual.

It is September of 2021.

What I thought I would do first today is a bridle and bridling segment.

I'm going to morph into a little thing about bits in a moment, so this is going to be bridles and bits, because while we're working on bridles, I might as well be teaching you about bits.

We're going to do both today in this little section.

That might be all we do today.

I'm not sure yet."


(Wiggly pony, being obnoxious because I have cookies in my hand):

"This is my newest pony in training to sell.

The reason he is wiggling so much is because I have treats in this hand and he knows it; so that's why he's wiggling around so much. So I'll give him an excuse for how much he's wiggling around right now because of the treats in this hand.

Sorry, he's looking for the treats.

He has to wait.

I usually don't have the treats in my hand because they do this, but in preparation for the video segment I'm about to do on bridling, I did put it in my hand.

Just a heads up you guys, I would not put treats in your hand because they do this.

I don't even put treats in my pocket because they do this.

Now, I know he's being obnoxious.

Don't think I don't know that he's being obnoxious.

That's my fault because I have the cookies in my hand.

Normally I wouldn't, I would have walked in, I would have given him the cookies, pulled the halter off, put the bridle on, but instead I got distracted and talked all about Mr. Twirl."


(Introducing Twirl):

"Let me introduce Mr. Twirl.

Twirl is my newest edition.

He's been here about half a month, about two weeks.

He's precious as you can see.

He's a pony.

He's about 14 hands.

He's about 10 years old.

He is a blue roan pinto pony. He's a grade pony, he's ranch bred.

You'll see he has a brand.

He has a brand on his shoulder, so he was clearly what we call ranch bred.

But he's unregistered, gosh only knows what he is.

I'll tell you guys what I think he is from looking at him.

What I think he is breed-wise, when you watch him go, you haven't seen him go yet, but when you watch him go, he presents himself with a very high neck and he's actually a really, really big sport pony mover.

He's actually an excellent mover.

Often these ponies are mediocre movers.

This thing moves like a Performance Pony.

That, with the way he presents himself really uphill, I see Hackney pony.

So I think there's a little Hackney pony in him.

I think there's some Paint, and he's ranch bred so I'm assuming Paint.

Also, I think there's some Welsh pony in him.

My guess is, he's probably a little bit of Hackney pony, a little bit of Welsh pony and some Paint horse.

Also, he came from Texas and so the Paint horse part fits into that as well.

That's what we're thinking he is breed-wise.

He's adorable.

He is precious.

He's perfect.

He came as a gymkhana Western rodeo trail, I-can-do-anything-with-any-child pony. Long mane.

He was a Western pony, Western, run around, gymkhana, everything pony.

I have pictures to prove it.

They're fabulous.

You'll see that when I run his full ad in a couple weeks.

But we decided to turn him into a fancy schmancy English pony.

Because of his movement, he's a super fantastic mover, because I have a picture of him jumping in a Western saddle and even in the Western saddle with a kid that's probably never jumped before, his front legs are really [typey 00:05:10] and up and even and beautiful.

His form over fences was gorgeous.

He came with the name Apache, but Apache feels like a Western pony. I wanted to give him a more English name to go along with his new persona.

So because of his forehead, can you see he's got a whirl here that I thought looked like a cyclone, so I thought about calling him Cyclone, but the connotations are not good.

Then I thought about calling him Whirl, but even those connotations aren't great, because you don't really want a pony whirling out from under your child.

And so instead I named him Twirl.

His name is Twirl, which I love.

I think it suits him beautifully.

I think it's a great pony name.

His owner, his current owner who's selling him, loves it.

So this is Mr. Twirl."


(The Power of Treats):

"But mostly what I want to show you guys is the power of treats.

I love the Mrs. Pastures Horse Cookies. I feel like they're the best cookies on the market.

Yes, they're a little more expensive, but I think they're the best tasting cookies on the market and the horses love them.

They're very easy to work with.

They don't go bad like apples and carrots.

When I first start bridling these guys, I give them the two Mrs. Pastures Cookies, and then I put the bridle on.

What happens after a couple weeks or a short period of time is that the horse or pony equates the bit with cookies and they can't wait, they can't wait to put that bit in their mouth.

They love the bit because they equate it with cookies.

Now, eventually you can stop giving them the cookies if you want, because the training's already been done and they can't wait to open their mouth for the bit.

But I like to sweeten the deal.

So my guys do get two Mrs. Pastures Horse Cookies when I put their bridles on.

So here we go for the beginning of our little bridle section.

For bridling, just pop the halter off and give him two cookies.

Just let him chew for a moment.

I'm going to show you different ways of putting the bridle on, but I want you to see the power of the cookies.

Because of the cookies, you can just dangle the bit in front of their mouth and they just take it.

It's marvelous because you have a horse or a pony that looks forward to the bit, and all of you, I'm positive, have run up against horses and ponies that won't take a bit.

In a minute, I'm going to show you what I call the baby horse style of putting a bridle on and that will help you so much with the horses that don't want to take a bit.

But if you give them the two cookies and they have that idea in their head, you can just hover the bit in front of their mouth and they just gobble up the bit and it becomes a really, really good experience.

I'm going to do it with the rest of my four sale horses for you guys today, just so that you can see it's not just Twirl.

All of my guys take the bit like that.

Even my horses that come to me and won't take a bit, after I work with them for a couple weeks, they can't wait to take the bit."


(Hunter Bridles):

"So while we have Twirl, let's talk about what I just put on his face.

Because Twirl is going to be a hunter pony, I put a hunter bridle on him.

The hunter bridles are usually brown, pretty much always brown and they usually have pretty stitching on them.

Anna, can you see the pretty stitching on the brow and on the noseband?

This is a very, very basic hunter bridle. It's nothing fancy shmancy.

I love these bridles.

They come from Dover Saddlery, they're Dover Saddlery's version.

This is a cob and it barely fits him because he's a pony.

It fits him at the very, very, a top, but it's a cob.

So it's a smaller horse size.

The prices are so amazing.

It's between $60 and $80 for this wonderful bridle and it comes with the hunter reins.

Hunter reins are braided.

That's very typical of the hunter reins.

I'll show you when I do my other bridles.

When I do my dressage bridle, the reins are different.

This bridle comes with the reins, pretty awesome.

Quality of the leather, really nice, really good looking, fits everybody great.

Somewhere around 80 bucks; you don't have to spend 400 bucks.

You don't, you don't, you don't, you don't.

You can spend between 60 and 80 bucks and get a fabulous bridle.

So this is a hunter bridle because he's going to be a hunter pony."


(Parts of the bridle):

"Then with Ms. Anna, we're going to just go through the parts of the bridle. I'm only going to do that once, because they're the same no matter what bridle you're wearing.

The bridle, parts of the bridle that every horse person should know about the bridle.

The crown piece is the part that goes over the top of their head.

So, over the pole, remember we talked about parts of the horse, why we need to know the name pole, the word pole.

The crown piece goes over the pole like a crown.

This is a browband.

Most of you know about the browband, because you can order any browband now.

You can get them in mega bling and I mean mega bling, total dazzle your eyes bling or you can just get nice and simple like this with the stitching.

You can get any bridle and put a different browband on it.

You can order the browbands by themselves and if you have a specific color for your horse or whatever it is, you can order a separate browband and put it on the bridle.

So crown piece, browband, this is called the cavesson.

With the English bridles, they're usually just the cavessons, just a noseband.

Just a noseband, we call it a cavesson.

Okay, crown piece, browband, cavesson, if you want to call it a noseband, fine, but it's a cavesson.

These are the cheek pieces because they run down his cheek.

Remember the parts of the horse?

These are the cheek pieces and this is the throat latch.

And that's all you guys got to know.

It's so easy.

It's crown piece, browband, cavesson/noseband, cheek pieces, throat latch. It's a no-brainer.

Crownpiece, browband, cavesson/noseband, cheek pieces, and throat latch. Super easy.

Western bridles pretty much never have a noseband.

Sometimes Western trainers will put a drop noseband on to teach the horse to keep their mouth closed, but pretty much across the board Western bridles do not have nosebands."


(Don't forget to tuck everything in):

"Don't forget to tuck everything in!

It shouldn't look like that.

It shouldn't look like that!

I'm going to really drill it into you guys.

It shouldn't look like that.

Take a moment and tuck everything in.

I have a blog post that talks about tuck it in, tuck everything in.

There's no reason for it to be flapping about.

One, it looks terrible.

Two, there is a possibility it could pop off.

I mean, if it's not closed, even at the top, if the horse pops their head in just the right way, it might pop off.

Tuck everything in, please.

With your halters, tuck the crown piece in.

Tuck everything in, please, please, please."


(Bridle positioning and adjustment/fit):

"Once you have the bridle on, make sure that the browband is not pinching anywhere and make sure it's not crooked.

Eek no, eek no.

It should be straight.

What I do is I put the bridle on, and then I wiggle the brow around and make sure it's not pinching his ears and I make sure it's perfectly straight across.

Same with the noseband.

When you put the noseband on, it shouldn't look like that.

Slide it, get it straight and even, and then put it on, snug but not tight."


(Throat latch fit):

"Four fingers.

Four fingers for a dressage bridle.

Because the horse, when it rounds off and flexes, the throat latch fills up, the throat latch on the horse fills up.

You do not want the throat latch on the bridle to feel restrictive and tight.

You don't want anything to discourage a horse from wanting to round off and go on the bit. That's going to be very loose and it's just going to dangle and it's totally fine if it just dangles. There's not a lot of use for these anyway.

But for a dressage bridle, four fingers please, loose.

The Western and the English people go much snugger.

The Western people usually go there.

The English people usually go there.

I don't care what style of riding it is, I like them loose for when you round them off."


(Bit Fit):

"You want a quarter of an inch from the ring to the corner of their mouth.

You want about a quarter of an inch there.

This bit fits him fine.

I'm not sure if this is a five, a five and a quarter or a five and a half, but for it to fit properly, there'll be a quarter of an inch between the corner of his mouth and the hole that the ring goes through."


(Working the bit and Weepy eyes):

"I know he is working the bit, it could be that we think his teeth need to be done.

So that could be part of it.

I do have an appointment with the vet to have his teeth done.


Also, his eyes since he came to us have been really weepy.

You're going to see me wiping his eyes a lot.

They've been really weepy.

Just FYI you guys about veterinary stuff, if your horse's eyes are weepy and even though you've got a fly mask on and the eyes are protected and they stay weepy, sometimes it's because the eye ducts, the tear ducts are blocked.

Just a little veterinary sidebar.

If you've got a horse's eyes that just keep weeping and weeping and weeping, and it's not the flies and it's not the dust and it's not the smoke, they could have blocked tear ducts.

So the vet comes and they do need to sedate them.

I believe they always sedate them and they unblock their tear ducts, their eye ducts.

I do have an appointment with the vet to come to do his eye ducts and to do his teeth, just a sidebar."


(Full Cheek bits):

"This particular bit is called the full cheek.

I love the full cheeks.

Have we talked about bits yet?

Did we do a section on--?

We'll do a section on bits.

So this is called the full cheek.

They're my favorite.

I love them.

They're really wonderful for teaching the horses how to steer and they give you a lot more control over the horses' whole face.

So when you pull on this rein, it not only brings his nose around, but it brings the whole side of his face around.

I feel like the full cheek stabilizes the bits for me.

I really like the feeling.

Plus if you really have to pull a horse around, you're not going to pull the bit into their mouth.

I'm really big on the full cheeks these days.

For the dressage horses, I use a German training snaffle.

But for anybody that you're having trouble turning or any youngsters that are learning how to steer, I highly recommend the full cheeks."


(Putting the Bridle on):

"Okay, this is Sebastian.

You guys all remember Sebastian, you've seen him like this with me, hugging on me.

We're continuing with the bridling so you guys can see that with my technique all of them can't wait to take the bit.

Not just Twirl, but all of them can't wait to take the bit.

So as we go to Sebastian, when I put the bridle on, two Mrs. Pastures Horse Cookies go in, you can throw the reins over if you want.

It's totally fine.

Totally fine to throw the reins over, no problems at all.

Then your horse can't leave if they want to.

He hasn't been groomed yet.

Once the cookies are in, just show them the bit.

I mean, how great is that, really?

They can't wait to take the bit.

Now, if you're hard and fast against cookies, this becomes a little tricky.

Maybe just use cookies for the bit or if your horse already likes the bit, fabulous, wonderful, done deal.

But if you're fighting with the horse about the bit, I highly recommend that at least for a period of time, you give them a few treats.

When you put the bit in, they can't wait to take the bit.

We already went through the parts of the bridle.

This is a flash. Remember this is a dressage bridle. This is a flash noseband, we're just not using the bottom part of the flash. When I close the cavesson/noseband, I just want it to be snug enough that it doesn't bounce on him, but not so snug that it feels restrictive.

Then the throat latch and then you just close the throat latch.

There you go."


(Next horse):

"So Dom is sporting his new winter coat, which is a gorgeous liver.

Look at how dark he is.

Again, they haven't been groomed yet.

I just wandered in to put bridles on, but he's turning this amazing, super dark liver chestnut and the reason he is digging around is I put the treats in my pocket because it's part of my technique. So go in, you can throw the reins over there.

Cookies shouldn't be in the pocket, give them the cookies.

Two Mrs. Pastures.

Wait a moment for them to chew it up and then show them the bit, and it just slips right in.

You see, it's not just one horse, all of my horses take the bits like that.

I'm proving that all of my horses take the bit like that.

Then the same thing, we don't have to do it again, but make sure the browband is straight not pinching his ears.

Make sure the noseband is straight."


(Taking the bridle off):

"When you take the bridle off, undo the noseband, cavesson, undo the throat latch.

Now this is really, really important: do not yank the bit out of their mouths, horse comfort 101.

When you take the bridle off, don't yank it out of their mouths, let the horse spit it out.

Take it from the crown piece and just let him spit it out.

Just lower it very gradually so it doesn't clunk his teeth.

One more time, taking the bridle off, let them spit it out.

Don't leave the straps closed.

Undo the throat latch, undo the cavesson/noseband, grab the crown, pop it over his cute little ears and then lower it letting him spit it out.

If you hear a clank, you're not doing it right.

Don't clank their teeth when the bridle comes off, you want the horse to want to wear the bridle.

We want the horse to be comfortable, right?

So don't make them uncomfortable by yanking the bit out and clanking their teeth.

It's going to discourage them from wanting to wear the bit tomorrow.

Let them spit it out.

Done."


(A super easy Western Bridle):

"This is really awesome.

You can buy these from the Western tack stores and they're fabulous.

Look, it just snapped right on.

They're so awesome.

I consider this a Western piece of tack.

If you're going to be using the same bridle on a bunch of different horses or you're trying out bits for the same horse or whatever it is, it's so great.

They've got a snap."


(Clarity Blue, Sparkly nails):

"Did you see my nails?

One of the reasons I had Anna come down today is because I did my nails in Clarity Blue.

This is Clarity Blue.

I have not been doing my nails in blue.

I've been very conservative with my nail color.

We've been doing lilac and mauve and lavender, but for some reason, I decided to go do clarity blue and I called Anna and I said, "You got to do a video segment because my fingers are clarity blue, and they might never be clarity blue again."

So today's all about my clarity blue nails.

I know my nails are ridiculous.

I know it.

I got it.

I'm super conservative.

I'm allowed to show my personality somewhere,

I'm showing it with my clarity blue nails with sparkles."


(My new tack room, and Bridles and Bits in general):

"This is my new tack room.

I love it, love it, love it.

I just wanted to point out some of the bridles and some of the bits.

This will be really helpful to you guys. Anna, if you can pan down on the bits, you're going to see everything I have is a snaffle.

Everything I have is a very simple snaffle, a very comfortable snaffle, bits that feel really, really comfortable in the horse's mouth.

I want to talk a little about this, guys.

I know in the hunter tack rooms and the jumper tack rooms, you're going to have much harder bits, and some of them are twists and some of them are pelhams or Kimberwicks or bridles that give you a lot more power and strength.

I know for the jumping horses, sometimes that's necessary because your seat is out of the saddle and so you might need more strength for your bit, because your seat is out of the saddle so you can't really slow of the horse down with your seat so much.

I know a lot of the Western people use harsher bits.

I know a lot of them will use twists.

They'll use double wires.

They'll use all sorts of stronger... I'm trying to pick and choose my adjectives so I'm politically correct, they use stronger bits.

I get that.

In the hunter jumper world, I get that, in the Western world, I get that.

I would really, really, really, really, really like it if the Western trainers only used bits like this. That would make me so happy if we could eliminate any of the twists and any of the tougher bits, that would make me really happy.

Also the shanked bits, I don't have any.

As you can see, I don't have any shanked bits."


(Dressage Bridles and Bits):

"Now, if you're a dressage person, by the time you get to the FEI levels to Prix St Georges, you have to be in a double bridle.

So let's talk about dressage bits.

Dressage bits, as best as you can, try to stay with the German training snaffles.

This is a German training snaffle with a loose ring, meaning the ring slips.

This

is standard dressage equipment.

They're wonderful.

When they created this, we called it a walnut. In the middle, it's really fantastic because you can see how it sits on the horse's pallet.

It sits on the horse's pallet and tongue really, really nicely.

It's very, very comfortable.

This is our most standard, wonderful dressage bit.

So dressage 101, this is probably the bit you're going to want to end up using until you go to a double bridle, which happens as you're approaching Prix St Georges; most people never get there. That's the FEI levels.

That's the international levels.

German training snaffle.

Here's another one, see this one, this is another standard German training snaffle with a loose ring. Here's another one, standard German training snaffle with a loose ring.

Love it.

If you are going to evolve into having a dressage type of horse, you'll probably want to go to a German training snaffle.

While we're talking about the dressage, if you are fortunate enough to be able to work up through all the levels: so pre-training level, training, first, second, third, fourth, look at about a year for each level.

Look at the fact that there's all sorts of things that will prevent you and your horse from going up the next level, the next level.

But if you're able to keep going up the levels, you're going to get into the FEI levels, at the Prix St Georges level, you have to wear a double bridle.

It's tradition, you have to wear a double bridle.

Once you get into the FEI levels, you have to wear a double bridle.

Here's my double bridle. Okay, so it's dusty because I don't have any horses that I'm riding a double bridle in.

With an FEI horse, if you can ride them in a simple snaffle all the way up through and do your piaffe and your passage and your canter pirouettes and your one-tempis and the whole dang thing in a snaffle, rock on, more power to you.

But if you're going to compete, you have to be in a double.

This is our standard double.

This is a dressage double bridle.

Both bits go in the horse's mouth.

Very bizarre I know, but it's true.

This is called a bradoon.

It's a snaffle, but you call it a bradoon because the ring is smaller, because you have all this equipment.

The ring on a bradoon is smaller than the ring on a regular loose ring snaffle.

It doesn't have to be a loose ring, but I think this is the most traditional one.

I like it the most.

This is called a bradoon.

Now, if you have a pony or a smaller horse, you can use the bradoon as their snaffle and it looks really nice because the rings are smaller.

Then this is the curb part.

So they call this a Weymouth, if you want the fancy name for it, or you can call it a curb.

This section's going to take a few minutes so if you're not a dressage person, fast forward, but if you are a dressage person, this is going to take a moment because I want to talk about the curbs or the Weymouths.

So you use a regular cavesson with the double bridle, just a regular noseband.

This is called the Weymouth, and it has a chain.

This is the "severe" part of the double bridle.

I'm not going to put the double on anybody, because none of my horses right now are wearing doubles.

But it's a standard dressage bridle and the double bit meaning the bradoon with the Weymouth and double reins, so you're riding with four reins, two reins on each side.

I'm not going to show you how to carry them, it's not important right now.

It's not important for my training program, so I'm not going to talk about that. If we end up with an upper-level horse that's in a double, I'll talk about holding four reins."


(Dover's Dressage Bridle):

"This is a dressage bridle.

This is a very traditional dressage bridle.

This dressage bridle is also a cob, it also came from Dover.

We love it.

It's the equivalent of the hunter bridle.

It's made by Dover.

I think they're called a Suffolk.

It's going to be somewhere around $80.

This is the hunter one we had on pony, comes with the braided reins, hunter reins, fabulous bridle. We love it. This is the equivalent in a dressage bridle.

Dressage bridles are usually black, dressage tack is usually black, hunter tack is usually brown, jumper tack is usually brown, working Western tack is usually brown.

The dressage tack is usually black padded, so we have the padded browband, the padded cavesson.

This is actually a flash noseband, so you see this little deal here?

This is called a flash noseband and it has a strap that goes around below as well and helps to hold the horse's mouth closed.

I rarely will use what I call the bottom part of the flash.

I usually just pull it off.

If you know you're never going to use it again, you can always cut off.

If you know you're never going to use the bottom part of the flash, you can cut that little guy off, you can cut this little ring off.

It's totally fine.

Or you can leave it on there and that's totally fine as well.

If you ever need help keeping the horse's mouth closed, you can always use the bottom part of the flash.

I try not to.

We talked about this with Dom in the Dom video that in the olden days, not in the olden days, but a bit ago, there was a fad where everybody was trying to crank the horse's mouths closed and that's out of favor now, I think, I hope.

So we're really not using the bottom part of the flash as much but the bottom part of the flash is standard dressage equipment.

So if you see a horse going around in a German training snaffle and the bottom part of the flash is on there, it's totally okay.

It's very traditionally dressage.

If you go to a dressage show you're going to see that.

Absolutely positively."


(Crank Nosebands):

"Very quickly, let's talk about this particular noseband, because remember I told you it's a crank.

Dom came to me with this crank noseband, they are all the rage right now or at least they were for the dressage bridles.

You can find a dressage bridle that just has a regular cavesson or a flash noseband, and then you can take the bottom part of the flash off.

I don't like the cranks because look at all this extra leather, it's just a pain in the [watoozy 58:56].

In addition, the point of the crank is so that you can crank the noseband closed to keep the horse's mouth closed, but we don't really do that anymore, or at least we prefer not to.

There's just a lot of extra moving parts.

This has to go through a little ring, you don't have to look at it, then it has to come around here, then it has to buckle through this.

I would've been long done with my other noseband by now.

Then we tuck this in, but you have all this extra stuff going on and most likely what's going to happen is that's going to shift and it's going to end up like that, and it's kind of ugly.

So no reason to use a crank.

You don't need a crank, get a regular noseband.

Because the bridle came with the crank, I left it on."


(Reins):

"This dressage bridle comes with my favorite dressage reins.

These are canvas and I love them.

I love that there are stoppers, so you know if your reins are even, because you know you on both reins, you're on the second keeper, you're on the second stopper.

I much prefer these to the braided reins.

I much, much prefer the dressage reins.

Now, you can get these, these ones are canvas, these are canvas, leather, you can get them in leather.

These are also dressage reins.

You see how these are leather with the little keepers, these are canvas with the little keepers?

You can also get ones that are rubber mostly for cross country, for when you know your horse is going to get wet.

They have rubber ones. I don't use the rubber ones because I am not riding cross country.

But you can see for Dom's bridle, he has the leather ones.

It's up to you.

Do you prefer to carry the canvas, or do you prefer to carry the leather?

I like the canvas because it's stickier.

You can really lock into it better."


(Shanked bits, how to choose the least severe):

"Anytime you have a shank, it's much more influential and much more "severe."

That's why none of my bits are shanked bits.

If you have to ride in a double, I choose the Weymouth, the curb that is the least severe.

Let me tell you how you know.

This is called the port.

You want as low a port as possible, the higher the port, the more severe.

There you go.

How easy is that?

So in the Western bridles or in the double bridles, the port sometimes go way up to here.

They're just monsters.

The higher the port, the more severe.

Stick with the low port, if you can.

The longer the shank, the more severe.

Stick with the shortest shank you can find.

Those are hard and fast rules across the board."


(Western Shanked Bits, how to choose the least severe):

"Western people please pay attention.

A lot of the Western riders do ride in shanked bits.

A lot of the Western disciplines require a shanked bit to compete, you got to have it.

A lot of Western riders feel like you can't really ride a horse one handed properly unless you're riding them in what I call a full bridle or a shanked bit.

I try not to.

The shorter the shank, the less severe, the longer the shank, the more severe.

There you go, you have it.

Across the board, the lower the port, the less severe, the shorter the shank, the less severe, and it does have a curb chain, and it's just part of riding with a curb bit."


(Happy Mouth Bits):

"When I'm training the youngsters, I like to put them in a Happy Mouth.

Happy Mouth is a whole line of bits that came out, I don't know, I'm old, 20 years ago, and we love them.

All of us love them so much that Happy Mouth as a company made pretty much every damn bit you can imagine in a Happy Mouth.

They look like this.

We definitely support Happy Mouths.

We love them and you can get pretty much any bit in a Happy Mouth.

When I'm starting a youngster and I really want them to like the bit, the Happy Mouth tastes good, they feel good."


(Full Cheek Happy Mouth Bits):

"I do start the horses in Happy Mouths and I love the full cheeks.

I love the full cheeks when you're teaching a horse how to steer, they're really fantastic because they influence the whole side of the horse's mouth rather than just the mouth.

When you're teaching a horse how to steer, sometimes they don't quite get it and if you use a bit like this, the ring ends up getting pulled through and into their mouth.

With a full cheek it won't happen.

When you start off a youngster, my very favorite bit is this one.

What they've done is they incorporated the full cheek with the Happy Mouth, with the link in the middle.

It doesn't get better than this.

When you're starting a youngster, in my opinion, not only a youngster, when you're starting a horse in my opinion, this is the best starting bit.

They love them.

Then if you want, if you need a little more, you can go to this full cheek.

So this full cheek, as you can see doesn't have the link in the middle.

This is what I call an old-fashioned full cheek, it just has the single.

You can see the difference with how it hangs in their palette. See how much softer this one is? This link allows it to sit on their tongue whereas this one pokes against the tongue. See?

This gives you a lot more control.

A lot more leverage because when you pull back, it points down on their tongue, whereas this one is the softest and the most lovely.

You can go from this to this if you want.

A lot of horses are really happy working in this. This is what I had on the pony Twirl, except for it was like this, regular full cheek without the happy mouth part.

Here it is, here's Twirls hunter bridle, and you see he's just wearing a normal, old fashion, I call them old-fashioned, full cheek with a single joint in the middle.

I love them.

They're wonderful.

They don't have to be fat with the diameter.

The width is perfectly fine.

So we've got your first starting off baby horse bit, then we can evolve if you want to this bit, perfectly fine.

Then if you want, you can evolve to this bit, perfectly fine.

Then if you're going to stay in the hunter world or the jumper world, you can stay with this forever.

Or you can go[typey 27:36] of the hunters, which is a D ring.

I don't have any because I don't like the look of them.

I don't have any Ds.

I don't like the look of them. I much prefer a full cheek look."


(Bit sizes in general):

"This is for my big guy, my big draft guy.

This is a simple full cheek, but it's a six-inch. This is going to be helpful to you guys.

The standard horse, standard quarter horse, standard horse is going to wear a five-inch.

That measures from here to here, five inches.

When you order a bit, they're going to ask what size, five-inch is standard.

Five and a quarter, five and a half when you start getting into the bigger mouth horses, six inches for my big half draft horse.

Rarely will you need anything bigger than six-inch, after 6 inches you get into the draft horse sizes.

We don't need to.

Six-inch, if you've got a big-mouthed horse or a half draft, a six-inch is going to suit you."


(Western Bridles):

"You can get a lot of different types of Western bridles.

I like this one.

This is my go-to for a Western bridle.

I have the baby horse full cheek on it.

I start a lot of horses in this bridle.

You can pick and choose what you want it to look like.

I like the Western bridles that have the little doodads on the forehead.

I think it looks pretty.

I really like it.

Usually, they have a little tip of silver. I love that.

I love the conchos.

You can go with whatever concho you want.

I bought these conchos separately and put them on this bridle.

Brown, you can go with as much bling as you like.

I don't like the look of the split ear.

I like this type of bridle for horse.

If you like the look of the split ear, fine.

No noseband.

See what I mean?

Very rarely do you have a Western bridle with a noseband.

I don't know that any of them come with nosebands.

I think that's considered a training device for the Western people."


(Different fasteners: Buckles vs Screws):

"I'd really recommend you go with buckles.

These days, people are going with Chicago screws.

Okay, I get it but sometimes they unscrew and you end up with your bridle falling apart.

Also, when you put your bridle together, you have to have a screwdriver and anytime you adjust it, you have to have a screwdriver.

You can't just adjust it.

Kind of a pain in the [watoozy 40:21].

Then the newest thing that they've come up with are just thin little leather pieces, and you just tie a knot.

That makes me really nervous.

What if the knot comes out?

Or what if I want to take the knot out?

Is it then stuck closed because it's leather?

I like buckles.

Buckles are great.

Buckles are fabulous.

They're easy.

They're great-looking.

It's really easy to adjust the bridle.

It's really easy to change the bit over. I love buckles.

You have to search a little bit for a Western bridle that has buckles, but they're out there, I promise.

I promise they're out there."


(Pony bridle and bit):

"I'm going to switch the pony over from this, which is a cob, and you can see I'm already at the very tippy top, and I don't have any more holes to go up and it's still almost too big.

Here's a standard bridle for a pony.

I'm going to switch his over into this pony bridle, I'll switch the full cheek over, this has the baby horse bit in it.

Oh, it's bradoon, baby horse bradoon.

You see how little the ring is compared to the standard ring.

See how tiny?

See how teeny tiny the ring is?

This looks really great on a pony.

You don't get overwhelmed by the ring size.

Maybe I'll leave this on the pony. I'm not sure, I didn't really realize that this was my pony bit. Pony bit on a pony bridle that makes sense.

Now let's just run through this bridle quickly.

Hunter, you see it's a hunter bridle, right?

It's pretty easy to see.

It's brown.

It's got the braided reins, correct?

Not quite as pretty as the Dover bridle.

So there was stitching on the noseband and the browband, but you can't see it because the bridle's really old."


("Pony Club" Trick to undoing "do-dad" english bridle hooks):

"The last thing about this cute bridle: down here you have these old-fashioned little [hookities 43:09] and we always used to use these on our horses.

We didn't have buckles.

These little doodads, you sometimes see them often on the hunter bridles.

Here's a pony club tip.

A lot of people struggle with opening these.

I'm just going to show you up close.

The pony club tip to getting these out is the push down from here.

If you push from here, it pops it out of the little slot.

You don't have to fight with it, and it comes right off, these look like that.

Then you can just undo it.

If you yank and yank at it, it can be really tricky.

So there is a good pony club tip for you guys.

Often the hunter bridles have these, although I much prefer the buckles.

Up here, they are buckles, don't ask me why, and down here we have these.

On the reins, we have the doodads.

Now here's a really good tip. Put this through the keeper already, then push it down, find the end, pop it in.

A lot of times, you'll end up fighting with these, and if you use that pony club, I call it a pony club tip, because I learned it in pony club a million years ago, it's really helpful.

Push down, it'll pop out.

With the reins, you can see these reins didn't initially go with this bridle, right?

But same game.

If I pull and pull, it can be really frustrating.

But even with my obnoxious ridiculous long nails, you can still see my tip.

If I push here, look, pops right out.

You're not fighting with it.

Done deal.

Then to put it back in, and like I said, these reins do not go with this bridle, see?

The leather doesn't match.

So you can see that that trick works across the board.

And then push it through here, already put it in that.

Then slip it down, pop it in.

It'll help you guys so much and it's a great tip to not fighting with these little doodads."


(A super easy Western Bridle):

"This is really awesome.

You can buy these from the Western tack stores and they're fabulous.

Look, it just snapped right on.

They're so awesome.

I consider this a Western piece of tack.

If you're going to be using the same bridle on a bunch of different horses or you're trying out bits for the same horse or whatever it is, it's so great.

They've got a snap.

You just snap the bit on and it's done.

Then the throat latch is really marvelous as well, it just attaches with a little snap.

In my opinion, these are worth their weight and gold because they're so easy.

Clearly, I don't have the reins on it, but they're just so darn easy.

I love these.

I just wanted to show you guys this last piece of equipment that just makes life so much easier. And I would consider this a Western bridle."


(The War Bridle):

"Okay, I wanted you guys to see how to put on what I call a war bridle.

Say you're driving down a country road and a horse is loose and it's walking along the road and you're thinking, "Oh, S-H-I-T, I got to catch this horse," but you don't have a halter, you don't have a bridle, you don't have anything with you, but you got to catch him.

I recommend a war bridle.

I'm going to show you guys how to do it with the reins, but you don't have to have reins.

You can have a leash for your dog.

What's in the car?

I've got a scarf.

I've got an extra shirt.

I've got a jacket.

I've got whatever it is, it serves as a war bridle.

So you catch the horse.

You tell them they're okay.

You put the scarf or the shirt or your dog's leash, or whatever you happen to have around their neck.

Wrap this around the nose and close your hand here.

Works great with a scarf.

Works great with anything you've got in the car.

It goes over their ears.

This one, the one closest to you, goes around the schnozzle and the handle is here.

It's the war bridle.

They're fabulous.

You can lead them as long and as far as you want them to go.

If I want Mr. Dom to come with me, I got it. Here he is.

I'm not going to take the time to show you how it is with a shirt or scarf or doggie leash, it doesn't matter.

I've taken a shirt off my body and used it, Simple Simon.

Slip it over their head, correct.

And there's your war bridle.

Good thing for you guys to know, because how many of us are driving around with a halter in our car?

If there's an emergency, put a war bridle on the horse and they steer great.

They're wonderful.

I can do whatever I want with him now.

War bridle.

Most people don't know about the war bridle, but there it is."


(General Conclusion):

"Now, I think I'll show you with Legacy how to put the bridle on baby horse style, so until they're trained like this and can't wait to take the bit, I want to show you how to put the bridle on baby horse style.

I can do that.

Oh, so let's discuss taking it off, once again.

Lower it, pull the crown over the ears, lower it.

He spit it right out.

And tell them they're wonderful.

Okay, last horse.


I think that wraps up my lecture about bridles and bits.

I think we covered it really, really well.

I'm going to consider that a wrap.

See you guys next time."