So, as y'all know, I had my first lesson on Friday. (See previous post) Red was ridden in a kimberwick bit, which he performed quite well in although I'm not 100% sold. He was still a little stressed with it and I think it's a little more than we need. The trainer said that he did wonderfully with relaxing into the bit for the first time in so long, and he had a very nice soft mouth. I talked to some other people about kimberwicks and I just don't know if it's the bit for us. I'm definitely going to try the wonder bit on him as soon as I have the time (hopefully this weekend.) to see if he likes it. It's what Spirit is using right now and mom LOVES it. My BM bought one a week or so ago and she used it once and went out to buy one for all of her horses. I posted on a wonderful bit/hackamore group on facebook and asked for opinions and they said that Red may have done so well in the kimberwick as opposed to a plain snaffle because of the lower palatte. He may have a bigger tongue, smaller mouth and etc, or the snaffle could've pinched him. Of course, there is also the possibility that he got hurt by a bit once and was afraid ever since. He's quite sensitive like that until you show him that all is okay now and he won't get hurt again.
But then again, I'm also very tempted to try out a Mullen Happy Mouth bit, which is what several people recommended to me. I love the idea of the rubber and while it's very gentle (unless you use it incorrectly, of course.) you still have good brakes and control.
I really like the rubber because there's nothing that could pinch the inside of his mouth. I'm not sure what style I would need though, because there's a lot.
I've heard from a lot of people that horses are more willing to collect and become more supple with the mullens, but I've also seen bad reviews. Red didn't seem to like the plain snaffle when I tried it on him awhile back, but I may try it again just to see. I'll lunge him first and just make sure he's comfortable.