Unveiling the World of Horse Tack: Essential Equipment for Equine Companions

Exploring Saddles, Bridles, and More - A Comprehensive Guide to Equipping Horses for Domestication: Tack is equipment or accessories equipped on horses and other equines in the course of their use as domesticated animals. Saddles, stirrups, bridles, halters, reins, bits, harnesses, martingales, and breastplates are all forms of horse tack.

Mastering Equine Elegance: A Journey through Advanced Horse Training Techniques

Depending on the abilities and inclinations of horse and trainer, training may include such elements as collection (controlled, precise, elevated movement) and extension (smooth, swift, reaching movement—the opposite of collection) at all paces; turns on the forehand (that part of the horse that is in front of the rider) and hindquarters; changing lead leg at the canter; change of speed; reining back, or moving backward; lateral movements; and finally the refinements of dressage, jumping, and cross-country riding.

Communication with the horse is rendered possible by the use of the bit and the aids. The rider signals intentions to the horse by a combination of recognized movements of hands and legs, using several articles of equipment. By repetition the horse remembers this language, understands what is required, and obeys.


here are several types of bits, including the snaffle, the double bridle, and the Pelham. The simplest is the snaffle, also called the bridoon. It consists of a single straight or jointed mouthpiece with a ring at each end for the reins. The snaffle is used for racing and frequently for cross-country riding. It is appropriate for preliminary schooling.

The double bridle is used for advanced schooling. It consists of a jointed snaffle and a straight bit placed together in the mouth, first the snaffle, then the bit, both functioning independently and attached to separate reins. The mouthpiece of the bit can have a port or indentation in its centre to give more control. The slightest pull on the bit rein exerts pressure on the mouth.


The bridle is a set of straps that makes the bit secure in the animal’s mouth and thus ensures human control by means of the reins (see figure ). The upper portion of the bridle consists of the headpiece passing behind the ears and joining the headband over the forehead; the cheek straps run down the sides of the head to the bit, to which they are fastened; in the blind type of driving bridle the blinkers, rectangular or round leather flaps that prevent the animal from seeing anything except what lies in front, are attached to the cheek straps; the noseband passes around the front of the nose just above the nostrils; and the throatlatch extends from the top of the cheek straps underneath the head.

For beginners, there is a learning curve involved in figuring out how all of your tack goes onto your horse and what exactly it does. Every new rider has to learn this, and there’s no harm asking for help. Here’s a look at how what some of these common tack items are used for.


This one is pretty obvious. The saddle helps you remain balanced on the horse, plus it gives you something to hold on to. There are different types of saddles for dressage, jumping, trail riding, etc.


This is the leather harness that goes around your horse’s head. You use it along with a lead rope to lead the horse around.


Sometimes called the breastplate or breast girth, these straps connect from the saddle down across the horse’s chest and around its front legs. They are normally used at events that require the horse to jump.


A saddle pad or a blanket is put down before adding the saddle to help keep the saddle from rubbing on the horse and causing irritation.

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