horse bit

Horse Bits – The Myths and The Truth

What Is A Horse Bit?

A horse bit is a type of tack that is placed in the mouth of the horse in order to communicate with the horse.  These bits are usually made of metal or some other type of synthetic material.

The bit itself extends from one side of the horse’s mouth to the other and rest in a part of the horse’s mouth called the bars.  This is in the area between the incisors and the molars where there are no teeth.  The bit is attached to the horse’s head using a bridle.

A bridle consists of several pieces including a browband, throat latch, noseband, headstall, cheek pieces, bit and reins.

The Job of The Bit – The Traditional Implications

A horse’s mouth is extremely sensitive especially in the gum area called the bars.  This area of the horse’s mouth has several nerve endings.  The tongue, inner cheeks, lips, and palate are also very sensitive.  Choosing the right bit for your horse is important because the wrong bit can cause your horse considerable pain.

The horse bits job is to help the rider communicate clearly with the horse.  The rider sends signals to the horse by using the reins to apply pressure to the horse’s mouth, cheeks, chin, and nose. 

The idea behind traditional types of bits is by moving away from the discomfort of the bit pressing in the mouth, the horse will start to move in the direction the rider is trying to get them to go.

Some bits put pressure on the lips of the horse.  These types of bits have been found to be ineffective.

Types of Horse Bits

There are several different types of bits.

  • Snaffle bit
  • Curb bit
  • Pelham bit
  • Kimblewick
  • Combination bits
  • Gag bit
  • Hackamore
  • Ported Bit

Each of these types of bits has been designed to give signals and put pressure in signal areas for the desired response or for particular types of riders.

Have You Stopped To Think About It – Is Your Bit Hurting Your Horse

So stop and think about it.  When you pull on the bit using the reins, what happens in the horse’s mouth?  Most riders never even think about it or look to see if there is a better way.

Have you ever watched a horse when the reins are pulled on a traditional bit.  They generally open their mouths and sometimes shake their heads because they are experiencing pain as the result of the bit rotating in their mouth and they don’t know why.

When the horse feels this pressure or the threat of the pain the bit causes to the palet, a horse may begin to adopt avoidance habits such as:

  • Placing the tongue over the bit
  • Grabbing at the bit
  • Becoming nervous or fidgety
  • Opening their mouth much wider than normal
  • Dropping their chin down towards their chest

When a horse starts to develop these types of habits and problems, many riders don’t know how to adjust their own habits and simply resort to using even harder bits and the horse ends up having more pain in the mouth.

This is not only hurting the horse physically and mentally, but it is hindering your horse from performing its very best.

Traditional bits cause a variety of problems such as:

  • Problems with scoring
  • Nervousness and being anxious
  • Tossing of the head
  • Opening the mouth wide
  • Stiffening of the poll
  • Facing problems
  • Ducking
  • Running through the bit
  • Dropping the shoulders

There have been many horse bits designed and redesigned, but the fact remains they all still cause one or more problems due to the way they are made.

Many riders have tack rooms full of horse bits and if you ask them why they have so many, they will begin to go down the list of problems each bit solves.  What they don’t talk about is the fact that even though one bit solves a particular problem, it creates another one.

The fact is; traditional types of bits cause your horse pain and unclear signals.  This is exactly the opposite of what you want to do.

Reinventing The Same Old Wheel

You can go to tack stores and websites and find a whole host of bits.  Thousands and thousands of bits occupy the tack rooms of countless horseman. 

They all look different and they will describe to you how that bit will help you with your particular type of horse.  However, the fact is that no matter how the design looks and how that bit is touted to solve a particular problem, they are ALL made the same.  You pull on one side of the bit and the other side moves with it rotating the bit in the horse’s mouth and causing it pain, discomfort and give it mixed signals.

Is There A Perfect Horse Bit

If you ask most horse experts, they will tell you there is no perfect bit for a horse.  They will just tell you what they like and want to know what type of problem you are trying to solve and recommend a bit for that.

What if there is a perfect bit and they just don’t know about it?  What if there is a bit that can give a clear signal to your horse without causing it all the pain and discomfort that a traditional horse bit can cause?  It is out there.

What Makes The Traditional Bit Cause The Pain and Discomfort

The basic reason a traditional bit causes the pain and the discomfort is because the shanks or D-Rings do not move independently of each other.  If you pull the left side, the right side moves also and vice versa.  It collapses and pokes the roof of the horse’s mouth.

No matter what you do, the bit will rotate in the horse’s mouth and that rotation causes the pain, discomfort and the unclear signals your horse is getting.

There Is A Perfect Horse Bit And Here Is Why

If you want your horse to perform at its best and do it without having the pain, discomfort and mixed signals they get from a traditional bit, then take a minute and throw all that you have heard and know about bits out the window for just a minute.

Let’s talk about “The Perfect Bit.”

The Perfect Bit was invented by expert horse trainer and bit expert, Darren Stoner.  After years of seeing horses suffer from how a traditional bit functions, he began to look at the bit mechanics to see if it could be changed and made better.

Since the main issue is that if you move one side of the bit it moves the other causing the bit to rotate uncomfortably in the mouth, then there would have to be a way to make each side of the bit to move independently of the other.

In order for that to happen, there would have to be independent rotation on each side of the bit.  That’s when the innovative and patented ball-joint connection was invented. 

This ball-joint connection of the shank to the mouthpiece allows independent rotational cheek movement that enables the rider to send the desired message without mixed signals to his horse without pain and discomfort to the horse.

The Perfect Bit combines control and horse comfort without the mixed signals.

When you pull the reins on the right side, the left shank doesn’t move and rotate the bit and vice versa.  Stop and think about it.  The horse doesn’t develop the bad habits associated with traditional horse bits and the horses have overall better performance.

Doesn’t it make sense to you that if you don’t rotate the bit and cause the horse pain that your horse will perform better?

You And Your Horse Have A Relationship

It’s important to understand that you and your horse have a relationship.  As with any relationship, do you want to cause pain to the other?

How do you think your horse will respond if they don’t have the pain and pressure in their mouth?  Most riders don’t even think about because they are used to traditional bits and that’s just the way it is.

That doesn’t have to be the case anymore.  You can guide your horse and give clear signals without causing pain and them not knowing why in a free and fully ethical way.

You can give your horse a chance to excel in ways they have never done before simply because you have changed that old style painful bit for The Perfect Bit.

If The Perfect Bit Is Perfect, Why Do You Have Different Styles

Different types of riding require different lengths of shanks.  If you have an older horse, it will require a different shank than a younger one.  Tough mouth horses require different mouthpieces than those with a more tender mouth.  It’s the concept of the ball-joint and the two pressure points is what makes it perfect.

We have a list of FAQs here.

If you don’t think this is the perfect bit, then give it a try. Professionals in barrel racing and roping are using The Perfect Bit and achieving amazing results.

Try a Perfect Bit today … You will see the difference … Your horse will FEEL the difference.

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