How to choose the correct horse bits and horse bridles - in detail

Apr 7


Innes Donaldson

Innes Donaldson

  • Share this article on Facebook
  • Share this article on Twitter
  • Share this article on Linkedin

How to choose the correct horse bits and horse bridles - in detail.


Whether it is your first horse or you own a professional operation,How to choose the correct horse bits and horse bridles - in detail Articles having the right horse tack and the proper bits and bridles is imperative. Finding the right bit will be dependent on several factors, and it may be a process and trying several bits to find the right one. Finding the right bridle may be a little easier, but there are variations in bridles as well.


Finding the right horse bits and bridles will depend partly on your style of riding. The bit and bridle work to get the desired performance out of your horse, and while you may need a bit with leverage for a western horse, a snaffle for hunt seat, or a double bridle for riding saddle seat, understanding the basic expectations of your discipline will help you narrow down your choices.


When selecting horse tack, the right bits and bridles will depend partly on the "feel" of your horse's mouth. Dependent on training and the horse itself (as well as the skill of the rider), some horses do well in a gentle bit. The horse is able to respond well in an egg-butt snaffle or other type of bit, while some horses will need a little more bit to feel your cues. Leg cues are important in knowing what type of bit to select as well.

Your horse's mouth shape will also affect what type of bit to select. If your horse is fighting the bit, tossing his head or otherwise not responding to your cues, then try adjusting the bit or trying a different bit or fit.


SNAFFLE - a gentle bit, broken in the middle. There are variations of this bit, including such as a three piece or twisted wire snaffle.

CURB BIT - uses a shank to provide more leverage for the rider. The longer the shank, the harsher the bit. The size of the port will affect performance of the bit as well.

KIM BERWICK - this is a good "medium" bit, with the pressure dependent on the port. Some are broken like a snaffle, others are whole pieces.


Finding the right bits and bridles includes fitting it to your horse. With the bridle, you want it so be on securely without "pulling" at your horses mouth. The bit itself should traditionally make your horse "smile" at the corners of his mouth. The size of the bit is not just the width, but will also include the thickness and metals. If you are starting a young horse, working with a gentle bit on groundwork will prevent your horse's mouth from becoming desensitized.

The best way to find the right horse tack is to try it on, and make sure your horse is comfortable. With the right tack, your horse will perform better for you. This makes horse ownership a pleasure when you are not fighting to get the results you want from your horse.