May 24, 2015

Bits for Dressage

I’m researching bits that can be used in dressage and there are a few things that I can’t seem to find answers to:

1. Are keepers on full cheek bits legal for dressage?

2. Are lozenge bits legal for dressage?

3. I know there are a few bits that are frowned upon in dressage, but are still legal, do you know what these typically are?

Thanks in advance!

Bit Situation

Here’s my situation: my TB mare is VERY heavy on her front end and is constantly pulling on my hands once we canter during a ride. My trainer recently switched our bit to a 3-ring single jointed elevator and we use it with a bit converter on the bottom two rings (this is what my trainer put her in, I don’t really have any experience with this bit). My mare goes very well in this and I can ride her with a loose rein most of the time now. I’ve read a lot of articles on how not using the snaffle ring (the biggest ring) is not good for the horse. I never really thought about it because, once again, I’ve never ridden in that kind of bit.

Also, the reason I ride with a bit converter is because when I ride with double reins I get confused with the two reins and that makes Mia annoyed and rowdy. I’m not experienced with double reins either, obviously.

The reason I’ve been looking into bits and how they’re used, etc. etc. is because the 3-ring I’m using is pinching the corner’s of Mia’s mouth and I’m entering a hunter show next weekend, so I need a different bit for that. Earlier one of the judges on here suggested a pelham for the hunter show, but a lot of people have said that using a converter on a pelham makes it severe though. Also, I put bit guards on my 3-ring, but there is too much space between the bit and the guard so it doesn’t help at all.

So here are my questions:

1. Does using a bit converter make the bit more severe (for a 3-ring or a pelham)?

2. What is the proper way for using double reins?

3. What is the difference between a pelham and a 3-ring elevator?

And any other suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thank you!


I was hoping I could get some help with bits and what is legal or illegal for certain disciplines. Currently I’m using a 3-ring single jointed elevator bit with bit converters and I’m entering a local hunter/jumper show in two weeks. Is that bit legal for that show? If not, are there any bits that work pretty much the same way that are legal?

Also, for dressage I know that leverage bits aren’t allowed, so what could I use for dressage? Hopefully by the time I want to enter an event, my mare will be able to do the dressage portion in her old D-ring, but just in case, what would you suggest in place of the elevator?

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated, thank you!

Need a new bit

I have a 5 year old ex-racehorse mare that I’ve had for about 4 months now. I’ve been doing mostly flat work and she gets very headstrong after we’ve been trotting for a while and/or when we start cantering. I have her in a D ring snaffle with a roller right now, I was thinking about putting her in an Uxeter Kimberwick or an Elevator. Which would you guys suggest? Or do you know of any other bits that might work to help keep her from getting strong and running through it? I plan on competing in eventing or combined training eventually and I have a feeling that when I start jumping courses or going cross country she’ll get much stronger than she is in the ring. Any suggestions or tips for bits or anything else would be greatly appreciated, thanks. :)

Please Judge :)

This is my little pony mare, Fancy (aka Little Miss Fancy Pants), and I during our ride today. She hasn’t jumped in about a year, if not more, so I decided to pop her over a couple small fences today and she was perfect! We had one mishap, but that was completely my fault.  Please judge both of us, I know I need to release a bit more and we took kind of a long spot. Thanks! :)

Jumping 18″ vertical

Rated Shows Question…

Hi all. I’ve seen a couple other questions about rated shows, but they didn’t quite answer my question. Do you have to qualify to participate in rated shows or is it open to anyone? I’m used to local schooling shows and growing up riding at a small barn that didn’t do many off-property shows, I just started doing bigger events in the past couple years. So any explainations would be wonderful. Thanks for reading. :)

Back to 100%?

A fellow horse owner I know has a mare that was, as far as we know, over worked when someone took her on trial. She was at a jumper barn, so she was most likely jumped too much. When the owner brought her home the mare seemed okay, but in the past couple days she’s become foot sore (her hooves are in bad need of a trim), back sore, and it seems she’s pulled her hamstring. The vet recommended about a month of rest, then she could be started back into work. So I’d like your opinions, do you think she’ll be able to recover 100%? I was looking to buy this horse, but then these injuries came up and the owner decided she’d keep her while she recovers. I would still really like to have this mare, but I’m in to eventing, so I didn’t want to stop looking for another horse if she might not be fully fuctional again.