From Endurance to Dressage
Old Bridle, New Purpose
Like all of you, I have ten of everything. How many pads and pairs of reins does one girl need? A lot, apparently. For years, and I mean that literally, I hunted for a bridle that not only fit Speedy well, but also looked and felt nice. As a result, I have a large pile of rejected bridles, none of which look or feel like anything special.
A few weeks ago, I was complaining about what an annoyance it is to switch out Izzy's bit each week. I finally decided to make the job somewhat easier by at least attaching some reins to the second bit so that I don't have to unhook everything. Tracy, from Fly On Over, joked that she hates switching bits so much that she just buys a new bridle instead.
Palm to face. Why didn't I think of that? No, really, I am not being sarcastic. Why did I not think of using a second bridle? As mentioned, I have a whole pile of discarded bridles from which to choose. So I did.
There is nothing I like about this bridle. The noseband is hung over the crown piece by sliding it through keepers which is the most inconvenient system of all time. Give me a monocrown any day of the week. It has a crank noseband which is okay on a larger horse, but it overwhelmed Speedy's lovely face. The leather is also cheap and crappy. Here's what it looked like on Speedy. I am sure he's horribly embarrassed by this photo. I know I am!
It actually fit Sydney (the OTTB gelding I had before Izzy) pretty well even though I still hated it.
On Izzy, the throat latch is too small; I have it on the last hole at the bottom. The browband is also a bit snug, but it's not pinching his ears. I am missing a keeper on the crank of the noseband so the leather flaps around a bit. Basically, this bridle is a mess. It doesn't fit Izzy very well, but it will do for a once a week bridle.
At least the cheek pieces are long enough. That's about the only part of this bridle that actually fits him. Well, that and the crank. For now, it's a much easier way to use the legal bit. In fact, I rode him in the "new" bridle and legal bit on Saturday. He's not relaxing and swinging his back like I'd like, but he has made huge progress over the past few weeks.
Bit by bit, right?!
10/9/2017 10:30:49 am
Good idea, but I might suggest you implemented backwards. I would suggest putting the bit that is dressage legal (the one you need to end up using) on the bridle you like, and that fits well. The non-dressage legal bit should be on the other bridle. That will give both you and Izzy more incentive to work with the new bit. :-)
10/9/2017 12:48:22 pm
Good idea! LOL Now that I am seeing quicker progress with the legal bit, I have been inspired to keep at it. I might follow your suggestion when we get to a half and a half schedule. I feel like we're pretty close. :0)
Comments are closed.
About the Writer and Rider
I am a lifelong rider.
I began endurance riding in 1996 where I ultimately completed five, one-day 100 mile races, the 200-mile Death Valley Encounter, and numerous other 50, 65, and 75 mile races. I began showing dressage in 2010.
Welcome to my dressage journey.
About Speedy G
Speedy went from endurance horse to dressage horse. After helping me earn a USDF Bronze medal in the summer of 2020, he is now semi-retired. Speedy is a 2004, 15'1 hand, purebred Arabian gelding. His Arabian Horse Registry name is G Ima Starr FA.
Izzy was started as a four-year old and then spent the next 18 months in pasture growing up. I bought him as a six-year old, and together, we are showing at the lower levels. He is a 2008, 16'3 hand warmblood gelding. His Rheinland Pfalz-saar International (RPSI) name is Imperioso.
National Rider Awards
State Rider Awards
State Horse Awards
CDS Sapphire Rider Award
Third Level: 63.514%
Third Level: 62.105%
2023 Show Season
(r) Ride-a-Test Clinic
2023 Show Schedule
2023 Completed …
2023 Qualifying Scores
Regional Adult Amateur Competition (RAAC)
Qualifying Training Level
3 Scores/2 Judges/60%: