Behind The Bit:

The horse escapes a forceful hand and discomfort or pain by rolling under and behind the vertical. The rider cannot achieve soft, precise control. These horses are often mentally unstable or have upset reserve energy. Heavy use of gadgets such as draw reins and tightly adjusted side reins can produce this carriage as a habit. To reclaim this horse he will need to return to a young horse head and neck carriage and have reschooling, starting with stabilization.

 

Above The Bit:

The horse escapes a forceful hand and discomfort or pain by pulling up to escape each time the reins are used. This can be a habit of carriage. Horses that are ridden in a tight martingale or draw reins often escape up as soon as the “tie-downs” are taken off. To reclaim this horse he will need to return to a young horse head and neck carriage and have reschooling, starting with stabilization.

 

Young Horse Head And Neck Carriage:

This is the approximate carriage of a young horse on a looped rein starting schooling on the flat and over ground poles and jumps. It is the first objective in reclaiming and stabilizing an upset horse and is similar to the carriage of a trained horse first warming up to work on contact.

 

Head And Neck Carriage Of A Horse Schooled First To Passive Contact:

Appropriate for most trained horses in hunter under-saddle classes, hunter over-fences classes, basic flat work for young horses, amateur riders on the intermediate level, field riding, and for specific goal or function that can be better achieved on this level of connection and contact.

 

Head And Neck Carriage Of A Horse Schooled To Educated Contact With Reserve Energy:

On this level of contact and schooling there is more reserve energy created by the leg. The head and neck carriage changes as the horse’s balance under the weight of the rider develops over months of schooling. On the flat longitudinal and lateral agility exercises, jumping through combinations of varying distances and going over uneven terrain help the horse achieve connected forward balance. The Horse’s training moves from loose rein (elementary control) to passive contact, and to soft contact with more reserve energy – the latter only appropriate for the horse, his owner, and his function or sport specialty. Gadgets can produce a fake frozen frame for some gaits and movements for short-term objectives. However, they cannot produce the mental and physical development needed for a sound, athletic, calm, and useful horse.