Introducing the double bridle
Hi peeps! For the past year I have been contemplating how, when and what bit to use when introducing my mare to the double bridle.
We are currently working towards PSG level (after a successful season at advanced medium/level 5), she is consistent in the contact and all the other signs that the time is right to introduce it, but she is so sensitive (she's a Jazz granddaughter, I think that says it all!) and I only want to move into the double if it is going to solidify our training and keep her happy, otherwise what's the point right!
The plan would be to start with, is just go out hacking in the double with no use of the curb so she can get used to the weight of it, then slowly introduce it.
But which curb should I be looking for? She is currently in the ported barrel roller from the Bomber bits collection, which she really likes. But the Bombers have a minimal selection of curbs, and I want something that is simple, gives her tongue room and as little poll pressure as possible (if she feels 'claustrophobic' she can be known to rear. I am an equine body worker so can tell it has never been out of pain, she's just a very sensitive soul and been misunderstood by previous riders).
Am I just over thinking this? 🤣 Looking for some personal experience if possible, I've read so many online articles haha!
Oh and I forgot to add, I am very familiar with riding with 2 reins, and I have had the pleasure of riding my coach's GP schoolmaster in a double. Definitely no expert at riding with one, but I have a fairly good feel for it
How have you been getting on with this?
I'm afraid that my advice is to just try a few very mild curbs (short shanks and low port) and see how she gets on. Possibly even have a bit specialist to come look at her mouth conformation and recommend a few bits for you to try there and then.
I know that's a really boring answer and you've probably thought of that, but there's really no other answer when it comes to bitting.
When you ride her in a double, she will tell you if she likes it or not. By the sounds of her temperament it may be a bit too much for her, but you never really know these things until you try. And you do have the odd horse that surprises you and just feels more secure due the aid being refined.
let us know how you get on.
I'm just here for the free book! (...and I won one!)
@sassymare thank you 🙂 I've actually gone back a little step with her as have been stepping up the work in prep for level 6 so have gone a tad in consistent in the contact again. Nothing major, and majority of the time she's taking the contact well and forward but I want her super happy again first consistently. I may just end up doing another season in the snaffle and introduce the double next winter (I'm in NZ). As you can tell I'm really in no rush to start it!
My usual go to bit fitter doesn't have a large range of curb bits, but they do have a low port short shank option I was thinking of trying. Now trying to match it with a suitable bridoon that she may like.