Trail Tips: Adjust the Curb Strap on Your Bridle and Wear Leather Chaps

Learn how to adjust the curb strap on your bridle and why you should choose leather chaps for trail riding.
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Adjust the Curb Strap

Photo by Heidi Nyland

Photo by Heidi Nyland

If you have a curb strap on your bridle, adjust it correctly so that your horse doesn't feel too much pressure under his sensitive chin. The Certified Horsemanship Association recommends adjusting the strap so that you can fit two fingers between your horse's lower jaw and the strap. Also, pull back on the bit's shank to see how rein pressure affects the curb strap's action. The strap should touch your horse's chin when pulled back to 45 degrees.

Avoid harsh curb chains. Just as a smooth, wide bench is more comfortable to sit on than a metal rail, a curb strap's wide, thick strap is kinder to your horse than a thin, rigid chain with focused pressure points.

Choose Leather Chaps

On the trail, leather chaps will help protect your legs and riding jeans from trail debris and foliage. Choose leather chaps or shorter, hip-to-knee chinks. Bonus: Leather will help keep you warm on cool, spring rides. Look for a smooth finish that can ward off spring showers.

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