What are the benefits of using a double bridle and what level would I need to change to this?

What are the benefits of using a double bridle and what level would I need to change to this please?

My mare is very sensitive and I am currently riding her in a micklem with an ultra kk dynamic snaffle. I am doing a lot of training in this and I wanted to know when I would need to change to a double bridle as I don't want to be in a position where I am starting at square one again.

My question maybe should be should I change to a double bridle now at the lower levels of dressage and what bits should I use... as I have noticed there is two! Or should I stay in the micklem until later?


Posted in Dressage, asked by Lisa Whimperley, 12 months ago. 290 hits.


Hi Lisa,

The answer to that question is different for each and every horse/rider combination. This is what the rules say about the Double Bridle:

At Preliminary and Novice levels an ordinary snaffle bridle must be worn, at Elementary to Grand Prix level dressage competitions under national rules a snaffle or double bridle may be worn, whilst at Prix St Georges and Grand Prix dressage levels under FEI rules a double bridle must be worn.

The double bridle allows the rider a greater finesse in the aids. For some horses this is a great advantage in their training. Some horses will find the double bridle to be a lot in the mouth, for these it is better to wait and to frequently go back to the single bridle.

Before the Dressage rules allowed any ported bit in the single bridle, we would encourage those riders with tongue sensitive horses to move to the double as soon as possible due to the ability of the Weymouth to provide tongue relief, this make these horses more comfortable.

Here is another opinion on when to introduce the Double Bridle:
Having completed the training and work required at Second Level, and before the double
bridle is introduced, a horse should be willing and able to carry his weight on the hind
legs with uphill balance in the snaffle bridle. The best test of this is to execute a simple
change of lead (a clear transition from canter to walk and back to canter without any loss of
balance or trot steps in between). If you are schooling Fourth Level and have already
successfully competed your horse at Second and Third Levels with scores in the mid to high
60s, well done! I would agree it is an appropriate time to introduce the double bridle!", written by Ana Gilmour

If you horse is accepting of the bit you are currently using, we would most often use the same type of bit for the bridoon. For the Weymouth we would look at how your horse currently goes, and decide from there whether a larger or smaller port would be most comfortable for her.

I that is helpful!


Claire @ Bombers
12 months ago
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