Under the category of mistakes I have made, I had not done anything with my appendix boy, and driving him last fall with just a halter was an experience, we did get started though. I have been teaching him voice commands since I bought him as a weanling so he does understand forward and whoa very well. I will bit him up in the spring but probably continue driving him with the halter.
The stallion was a yearling when I got him and I started driving him quite by accident, he was too big to tow and arab stubborn. I found out I could drive him, and we have continued, I can now tow a noisy fibreglass sled or a tarp with no problem. As long as he continues to respond I will limit my bitting to getting him used to wearing a snaffle.
Believe it or not I teach as much as I possibly can in the halter and I can generally ride my 2 year olds down the road with out a problem like that. The first piece of show legal(not that I use anything illeagle but a halter isnt exactly acceptable) I put on them is a snaffle and it is usually of the reining horse variety, it doesnt really give you more control but allows you to work off different points and can also be switched into a curb with just a changing of rein attachment and the horse still has something familiar in his mouth and is a little less stressful I suppose. The true meaning of horsemanship is to do as little as it takes to get the response and if I can gain total control with a halter thats just all the better and without anything is total trust.
I used to use bosals, but now the "in" things are sidepulls. Probably cause they don't put those unsightly dents in the bridge of the nose. I go straight to a smooth mouth snaffle and usually stay there unless I'm going into a more extensive class,such as Western Pleasure, which you eventually have to go with a different bit.
Before the horse is mounted for the first time he should be tied and long troted with you behind using 2 lung lines, it takes alot of leg work on your part. Tied is when you tack the horse and bridle him in the stall get him used to that befor you even try to get on him. Lunge,lunge,lunge is also good. The first time you mount he should have the idea and understanding that you want foward movement from him, if you mount before the understanding of foward movement you have to unteach what he has leardned and start from scratch. If has all this training prior to the first ride you can ride with a loose ring snaffle, or a very light snaffle. If you are showing in a training class some require a bosal. It depends on what you are intending to do. Good Luck.
It is better to have loved and lost, than never to have loved at all.
At the canter, two diagonal feet hit the ground together. The other two feet hit the ground separately, making a three-beat gate. One forefoot is followed by the opposite hind foot, then the other two feet together. There is a time when no feet are on the ground.
***Edited By: shinyblackpit on 1/19/2012 10:14:41 PM*** Reason: removed link