I talked about bitting a horse up in the post about the mouth. I would like to emphasize how important this is. A horses mouth is either get tin better or worse. Much like my golf swing. Bitting helps keep it good or getting better.
For this discussion and for Saddlebred Show horses we are going to try teach the horse to move away from pressure. We want this because when we want to raise a head or tuck a chin, we don't want em pulling back on us in a tug of war.
A common bitting rig consist of a surcingle and a side check bridle. Another type is a Dumb Jock. We have seen a few of these. LOL. This is like a surcingle but with a tree on the back so the reins may be fixed up higher where your hands would be.
Make sure your rig is fitted properly to your horse. It should fit well but nothing should be to tight or pinching anywhere.
Don't try to do it in one day.
Training horse is like bending an oak.
impossible in one day, inevitable over time. Tricksters can trick a horse into something in one day but the trick doesn't last. The horse figures out the trick then reverts back and is harder to deal with in the future and is not dependable.
Its better to ingrain in his mind and muscle memory. Much as a golf swing
This is really easy, simple and when you think about it makes sense.
Start easy. Use a bit that is comfortable for you horse. Connect the side lined to the bit. Adjust the length of the sidelines loosely at first. Make the horse reach for it. In other words in a relaxes position the horse is not feeling the bit unless he reaches out to touch it.
He reaches to touch the bit after he returned to the relaxed position. He or she learns that moving away from the pressure of the bit is more comfortable.
Gradually over time shorten the side lines a little at a time until the desired head set is achieved.
This takes time. Bit three times a week for about 15 minutes more or less depending on your horse.
Temperament and conditioning factor into the timing. Make it a regular part of you training program.
Be especially careful with a curb bit. To tight could cause the horse to panic and invoke the flight or fight response mostly flight with horses.
I do this in the stall. I also turn out in a bull pin loose in the bitting rig.
Now when you use your bridle your horse will respond to you.
Remember horses can be dangerous and you could be hurt so be careful or better yet have a professional help you.
As always be respectful and kind, to your animal. Gods gift to us. We are to be good caretakers.
The World was built with horses. Through out history all Mans great accomplishment.
There was a horse helping him do it. Pulling his wagons, carrying him to battle and dieing with him.
These post are my opinions and observations and are recommended for professionals only.