No Metal in the Mouth - The Leather Bit
 By Artista   •   2nd Mar 2011   •   17,065 views   •   22 comments
The Leather BitThe bit is an object fitted inside of the horses mouth to offer the rider better aide for communication, and control, but the design of the bit started hundreds of years ago, with some of the oldest remnants dating since before the Yuan Dynasty in China, in year 1259. But with today's current technology changing almost every year, the fact that the bit remains practically the same seems something of an oddity.

I was never a fan of bits, so I suppose I'm a little bit biased, but I was experimented with bitless riding since I was about 10 years old. The first device I experimented with was the mechanical hackamore, which was good for stopping forward motion, but didn't really get the "side-action" that I wanted for teaching horses sharp turns and lateral exercises. I experimented with bosals, hackamores, and a variety of halter combinations until I finally found a solution I liked.

I started making my own bitless bridles when I was 16, and began buying better-quality ones shortly thereafter. The bitless bridle features a cross-under design that has stopping power, for forward horses, and can still be very persuasive in turning the head left or right.

But, since I showed Dressage (and in Dressage, bitless bridles are illegal) it was mandatory that I came up with something else for show season. I turned to looking at hundreds of thousands of bits. I saw bits made of plastic, some made of rubber, others that were made of chain, and even others that were made out of copper or sweet iron. But then I discovered the leather bit.

I purchased my first leather bit from New Zealand's Cashmore Equestrian, from an Olympic show jumper, Grant Cashmore. He endorsed and sold the bits and for a while, was the only place I could buy them: they weren't very popular. But I'm now pleased to report that they're gaining popularity all over the world! Leather bits can now be found at a variety of tack stores in the US, the UK and Australia. The benefit of the leatherbit is endless-

1. They mold to your horses mouth, so there are no pressure spots -- ever.
2. There can't be a "nutcracker effect" or any pinch.
3. They don't break (horses can't chew through them, they don't rust away, etc.)
4. There is no risk of fracturing teeth, "deadening the mouth" or creating sore gums.
5. They're always "room temperature" no more ice cold bits during the winter months!

Now since leather is a natural material, they need to be taken care of and kept stored in a cool, dry area, but with quality care they can last for months. There are many varieties, including bits with metal inside, snaffles lined with leather...the list goes on!

So if you have a soft mouthed horse, or want to get your horse even lighter in his 'regular bit' -- give the Leatherbit a try. You wont be sorry!
Horse News More In This Category:  Equine Technology      Horse News More From This Author:  Artista
Soul Horse  
Wow! thats pretty cool i went to the world horse expo last week and saw those! I didn't buy one because, i don't have a horse... But if i did i would have!
  Mar 2, 2011  •  11,970 views
This is so cool! I'm definetly giving the Leatherbit a try!
  Mar 2, 2011  •  11,981 views
No Walkin Farms9  
Great article. How much do leather bits usually run? Or what's the price range that you've seen?
  Mar 2, 2011  •  12,766 views
Untamed Heart  
hmm... My horse wouldnt like that much... :(
  Mar 2, 2011  •  12,749 views
T W I  
Quite interesting!
Too bad I don't own a horse.
  Mar 2, 2011  •  12,753 views
Painted Destiny  
Those are cool!
  Mar 3, 2011  •  12,732 views
Finally There  
I don't usually use bits anyways. But those look cool. :)
  Mar 3, 2011  •  12,772 views
Wanderin Boy Memorial  
Wow, that's neat ! Great article :)
  Mar 3, 2011  •  12,774 views
Emma Watson  
WOW i am speachless thats so cool
  Mar 3, 2011  •  12,753 views
The do actually look quite comfortable for the horse ^^ I wonder if they'd be better for breaking youngsters than the standard breaking bit, I may have to test this, thanks for the article!
  Mar 3, 2011  •  12,729 views
Those are a great idea... Love the article, thanks for sharing it! I never would've known that there was a leather bit! =)
  Mar 3, 2011  •  12,750 views
Dark Star  
My trail horse is hard headed, you have to have a 'harsh' bit if your going faster then a walk, but at a walk I think this would work great...honestly, this would only work for soft mouth horses, which some horses are some horses arn't, mine isn't. My barrel horse might be able to use this at a trot, but not any faster and probably not collected (and she's an extreamly laid back horse).

It all depends on the horse which bit you use.
  Mar 3, 2011  •  12,726 views
T E M P E S T  
Wow! I've never heard of those, but you learn something new every day!
  Mar 3, 2011  •  12,806 views
Great article! My friend has one of these!
  Mar 4, 2011  •  12,753 views
That's pretty interesting. I had never heard of bits made of leather.
  Mar 4, 2011  •  12,756 views
Emma Watson  
  Mar 4, 2011  •  12,752 views
I have been looking for a new bit and a training bit and I was going to go with rubber but leather def. looks like the best choice!
  Mar 5, 2011  •  12,767 views
Seven Sins  
first i have heard of leather bits
  Mar 5, 2011  •  12,731 views
They sound such a great idea for breaking horses and sound very nice
Shame my horse is too strong for them
  Mar 6, 2011  •  12,768 views
That's really cool!
  Mar 6, 2011  •  12,744 views
Grant got the idea for leather bits from the ones already sold in Europe. Leather bits are actually illegal for dressage as well. It's a good bit but it works for some horses and not others. One of my horses hates it.
  Mar 10, 2011  •  12,820 views
cool if i had i horse i would prob get one of those
  Mar 21, 2011  •  12,725 views
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