TBD – Trying out the double bridle…

TBD at work means “To be Determined”. In my riding life, it refers to “Team Bad Decision”, which is what a few friends refer to making certain decisions dealing with 1300 lb animals, in what might be less than ideal circumstances…like at home, without my instructor handy to give advice on how to use it properly.

I’ve been pondering the double for a while. Lauren planted the seed at least two years ago, and I never did anything about it. I wasn’t getting that same “get her used to it” advice from others, and I was getting a lot of “stabilize your hands more”, so I hadn’t gone anywhere with it.

I’ve been thinking about it though.

We’re showing third level, and it is optional at this level.

You don’t learn by not doing, you learn by doing, so if I ever want to learn it, I need to practice it.

I watched some videos by Catherine Haddad, here is part 1 where she states the ideal age to introduce is 5-6 yrs old…Bali is 8.
Double Bridle Part 1

I asked James about it, he suggested looking at some inexpensive curbs, not going to the $270 KKs at first. And since Bali is clocking around quite nicely in her $12 (thanks to a $5 coupon from VTO) snaffle, I figured she will be fine in a $40 curb.

I had offered to drop off Point to Point race books at Dover for a friend, and so I was there and went over to look at the curbs. There was a Carol Lavell curb for $40, likely this one. And since Carol Lavell made it to the Olympics and it has her name on it, it must be good, right? Dover has padding as well, to fabricate a padded crown. Padding for Crown, so I bought that as well.

I have spare parts to put a second bit hanger on her Tack a Tack bridle, more reins – although the smooth set I found are a bit short. I actually decided to dig around and find enough to get a second bridle together for her snaffle bridle. At the moment, I’m using her snaffle with the curb and need to find a bradoon, with the same mouthpiece, but perhaps a bit thinner.

I probably wasted 30-45 minutes digging around, putting together the bridle, finding longer cheek pieces for the curb, fussing with it, is the curb low enough? too low? is the snaffle ok? etc, and then finally hanging it up. Then I still had to groom Bali. I was fussing wondering if I needed to come watch the videos again, but then I just decided to go for it.

I’m a bit clumsy holding it all and getting it into her mouth gracefully. She is a good girl and was accommodating. I studied it, and fussed a bit more, decided to lift the snaffle one hole higher. Could not decide or remember how to adjust the curb and finally just left it a bit loose. Remembered to give her her sugar, and then we headed out to the ring.

It was a non-event. Yay!!!!! There will be pictures, when Doug has time to get the pics up, he was out with his camera. His observation was “Her expression is like a kid who just got braces on”.

We did a full ride, I rode off the snaffle, although I played with how much slack to leave in the curb rein. The smooth reins I grabbed are a bit short, so they weren’t hugely long. Now, I’ll have to take it to a lesson, find out the finer adjustments, and just learn to be comfortable with 4 reins and two bits.

I brought it all inside to wash up, the spare parts were rather dusty, and decided to use that crown padding. That thing weighs a LOT with 2 bits, curb chain, reins, etc.

As often is the case with TBD, it all works out, so I live to be on TBD another day!


About Mel

Random musings in a riding journal
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s