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Pulling On The Bit [Part 1]
WRITTEN BY: Cheryl Sutor 
"I have a 8 yr old morgan mare and when ever i try to get her on the bit all she does is pull how do i stop this?"
It is very important that you realize you are attempting to teach your horse something that you have not yet learned yourself. This is a fairly difficult task to do! You must be very patient and consistent in order to see the desired results! Also, you must read the following two articles before attempting the exercise that I've outlined below.
Sensitizing and Desensitizing
If you have read and completely understand both of those articles, then continue on to the exercise listed below. If you don't follow all directions on this page exactly, patiently and consistently, you may not get consistent results.
First, I'll answer a few common questions:
WHY DO HORSES PULL ON THE BIT?
Now, let's get on to the exercises...
Repeat each step until both you and your horse have both perfected it, before moving on to the next step. Block out all outside distractions (other riders, trainers or watchers) and focus completely on what you are teaching your horse.
Teach your horse to give and relax his jaw and neck to the sides. If you can't get your horse to give and relax these points to the sides, you'll never be able to get your horse on the bit without pulling and locking up.
HOW TO:* If your horse pulls on the bit when you put pressure on it, maintain the same exact pressure on the rein until she "gives" to the bit and softens her jaw and neck. The most important part of this exercise is that you DON'T release the rein until she stops pulling, gives to the bit and softens her jaw and neck.
Alternate sides exactly as in step 1. This step will make your horse's neck and jaw very soft, giving and flexible. Trying to get your horse on the bit without softness is a NO NO.
Teach your horse to go on the bit without pulling on the bit. Be sure that your horse is 100% consistent with steps 1 and 2 before trying step 3, or it won't work! You will need impulsion, softness and fluid forward motion before you can do this!
HOW TO:* If, at any time, her head comes up, she stiffens and pulls on the bit...don't release the pressure! Instead, back up to step 1 or 2 and maintain the pressure until her head comes down and to the side softly.
Once your horse has perfected step 3, she will be on the bit, soft in her jaw and neck, and she won't pull anymore! If, at any time, your horse fights the bit, becomes anxious, nervous or confused...you are moving much to fast! Back up to the step before, and repeat until your horse is relaxed, soft and giving again.
For most horses, this lesson can be learned in one riding session. However, for horses that are serious "bit pullers" or that have very hard mouths, this exercise may take several weeks or even months to perfect. So, be patient and also use this exercise as a "refresher" each time you ride your horse, so that she doesn't re-learn that bad habbit of pulling on the bit!