I've been told that you should never neck rein a Peruvian is this true? I recently viewed a CD that showed them neck reining around poles. I have the same Peruvian bit with the 6 rollers and the flipper. Can this one be used? What is the difference on how you use the bit if it is broken in the center or straight bar?
Sincerely:Audrey Lee

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Audrey,
Thank you for question. I am not sure where you are getting your information from regarding never neck reining a Peruvian but I will try and help you out.
The bottom line is a horse is a horse whether gaited or not. If taught properly reins are only there as a reminder to your horse. A properly trained horse yields to pressure changes, seat bone movement and proper leg aides. Remember there are 4 corners with 4 legs. The bit can only control 2 .When we speak to our horse with pressure and weight changes we have the ability to control all 4 corners. When done properly neck reining is one of the steps to a bridle less ride. I personally have horses that can be ridden with only a ribbon around their neck. None of this does any negative reactions to the gait of your animal, it is simply education.
As far as the bit goes, when properly trained which bit you use makes no difference whatsoever. I am often asked which bit will I use on a horse and my answer is always the one that’s closest to me. Personally in Peruvian bits I prefer the 2 solid copper rollers with the tongue piece and I try to find bits that are thick. They are softer and kinder to the bars of your horse’s mouth. I then immediately remove the thin single chain and replace it with a flat English metal curb chain which is thicker and kinder to your horses jaw. I find the thin single chain causes pain promotes hard mouths and often will make a horse resentful of the bridle.
In answer to your bit question regarding snaffle (broken in the center) and or straight bit is - Yes. The broken bit is used as a starter bit which can be used with a much heavier hand and I don’t believe necessary.
Be sure when teaching your horse to neck rein that you do not wind up with a counter flex neck and head. Meaning, when asked to turn to the right nose, head and neck should follow to the right. Many horses seen neck reining turn correctly but their nose and neck are counter flexing to the opposite side (on a right turn their nose is tipping left) this is counter flexing. And it is actually a movement that can be taught to a horse especially one that will be used for reining.
I hope this helps you out and again thank you for your question. If I can be of further assistance feel free to contact me.

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