Double Trouble

What the $&#@ is this:


And more importantly why did it have to be on the horse I want to lease?!?!?

Ok, ok, I know exactly what it is…but I have no earthy idea how to operate that piece of machinery.

The saddest part about this whole thing is that aside from this issue, she was a true gem of an animal. Her owner and I got along well and she was one of the sweetest horses I have ever met. She was light on her feet and just put everything she had into anything you asked of her despite the fact that her feet are the size of dinner plates. I had her owner ride first and then I got on and went for a little test drive. It was really fantastic.

I didn’t think much of it at the time because her owner just said- “don’t worry, I started using the double bridle when we came to this barn.” She wasn’t concerned, so neither was I. We clipped the curb part loosely on the grab strap on the saddle and rode with only the snaffle portion. Things went really well. I just did some walk, trot, halt, backing, a few turns on the fore, and a few steps of shoulder in and haunches in along the rail. Her trot was very animated and hard to sit but she was nice and round and some steps seemed just plain floaty. Naturally, I was giddy. I left thinking all I would be deciding was how many days per week I could eek out of my schedule to ride her…and now I am heartsick thinking about this double bridle. I understand that in the right hands this bit combo can be very gentle but all that means to me at the moment is that in the wrong hands it can be painful, forceful, and detrimental to training. I am afraid that, without intention, those wrong hands may be mine. I am very willing to learn how to ride in a double bridle but I want to make sure I am ready- that I am at the appropriate level to even attempt it.

Am I over thinking this?




2 thoughts on “Double Trouble

  1. Yes! Overthinking. For one I’m surprised she’d ride in a double all the time. I think most dressage horses go in a snaffle until a few days before a test then they swap to the double. And two, you could always just tie up the curb like you did in your test ride. No reason to hold on to it if you don’t have to. Plus I’m assuming if you’re leasing the owner won’t be there when you are riding so who’s to know. And third, what a perfect time to take some lessons in a double! Perhaps you could think of it this way; you know how to ride in a snaffle by itself, and you know how to ride in a curb by itself, now you just have to get used to doing both at once. But back to point one, seems weird if she goes well in a snaffle why anyone would ride in a double all the time. Here’s some double information from a site I like:

  2. Thanks Elise! That website is great.

    I thought it was a bit fishy too- she just moved to this barn a month ago and they told her that’s what she needed…seems overkill to me on this horse. But I suppose it wouldn’t be a bad thing to learn. (slowly and with the help of a trainer!)

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