The Hackamore- Using a bit-less bridle May 18, 2015 09:09
A Hackamore applies pressure to the nose and to the chin. The longer the shank, the more severe the leverage of the Hackamore will be. The Hackamore should be adjusted to sit just above where the nasal bone ends and where the cartilage begins. Generally speaking, you will need to invest in shorter cheek pieces to be able to fit your Hackamore correctly.
The Hackamore is used with a chinstrap. There are many options when is comes to choosing the type of chinstrap. Leather straps come standard with our Hackamores but often are swapped out depending on the specific horse and rider needs. Chinstraps are available in nylon, stainless steel, elastic, rope, etc. The harder the material, the sharper the Hackamore. The chinstrap should be adjusted snug like a noseband would be adjusted.
Hackamores should also be used with a leather Hackastrap to prevent them from flipping up. The Hackastrap is a piece of leather that loops around the top of each cheek piece, goes down the cheeks and attaches under the jaw. On some Hackastraps there is even a little leather loop for your throat latch to go through, this way you have fewer leather pieces moving around.
Hackamores are usually thought of as the bit-less bridle. They are used on horses that react better to nose and chin pressure as opposed to tongue and bar pressure. They are also wonderful for horses do not like bits in their mouth or for horses who have cuts or sores and cannot use a bit while they heal. These are all good reasons for using a Hackamore. What riders often forget is that Hackamores can also be used in combination with a bit. They can be used similar to when using a Weymouth Set. The bit can be used with a Bradoon Hanger, while the Hackamore is held on with the bridle’s original cheek pieces. Using a snaffle in conjunction can give the rider some extra help in the turning department, which is one thing the Hackamore does not offer. One thing to be aware of if doing this, is to make sure your snaffle cheeks or rings aren’t too large thus interfering with the shank of the Hackamore. It is best to use a Bradoon when using the combination.