Different Versions of the Same Thing

V is for Versions. If you are joining me from Blogging A To Z, welcome! Since the blog is already daily, with topics for each day [About: Schedule], there is no specific A To Z theme. I may even skip a few letters. Gasp. Clutch the pearls. The goal for this year is less crazy, more visiting. [Ze State of Ze Blog 2014]


Saddle Seat Wednesday
Holding four reins
Photo by Courtney Huguley

I am now riding with a double bridle. Gulp.

In dressage, graduating to a double bridle is a big deal. It is a point of endless discussion, mostly about the dangers and about criticism of folks who have done so without proper skills.

For example, a quote from Dressage Today, emphasis mine:

“Are You Ready for a Double Bridle?”
by Ana Gilmour

“However, using a double bridle too soon can result in anxiety in the horse, mouth problems and irreparable damage.”
Dressage Today
Mar 6, 2017

This puts a certain wariness in one’s head about having two bits in a horse’s mouth.

In saddle seat, 10 year olds ride with a double bridle. Allow me to repeat that. Munchkins who are learning to show walk-trot are doing so with a double bridle. Minus the vanishingly small exception of a few young horse classes, if the rider is in a suit, they are using a double. Performance = 2 bits.

I’m not against it. It works for them. The situation is the same as dressage getting its knickers in a twist about tempi changes whereas hunters install lead changes as soon as possible. Different disciples, different goals.

Granted, I did use a double bridle with George in the sidesaddle class at the Washington International Horse Show. But a) George was made of cast iron. Nothing was going to hurt him. & B) I never actually touched the reins.

It has been decreed that I will learn to ride saddle seat with a double bridle. The horses are fine with it. I can’t look at the curb rein without thinking about irreparable damage.

Thank you for reading,
Katherine Walcott

Mr. Whizbang is not objecting to the double. He is objecting to being surrounded by fools, his normal state.
Photo by Courtney Huguley
Too much shade, but a cuter Mr. Whizbang.
Photo by Courtney Huguley

4 thoughts on “Different Versions of the Same Thing

  1. I don’t know that I could deal with a double bridle.
    I still have the photos I took of you on George at the International. I’m sure I gave you copies.

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