In performance and showing events, the bit’s function is to ask, tell, remind and be sharp only if necessary. The horse must perform with precision and confidence. The prettier and more correct the horse and rider can show, the greater the chance of success.
In speed events, the horse needs more protection from the rider’s hands. Timing and cues are perfected in the practice pen. At the time of competition for a speed event, the more efficient the horse can do his job without interference, the smoother and faster it will be.
On this non-palate pressure bit, the shank gives the rider leverage and the mouthpiece applies the pressure. All pressure response in non-palate mouthpieces focuses on the edges of the horse’s tongue. This type of pressure provides horses with a direct cue. Non palate pressure mouthpieces are under 2” in height and provide ample amount of tongue relief without interfering with the of their mouth.
The fixed shank offers direct contact and immediate cues.
About Jim Edwards
Master craftsman Jim Edwards of Blum, Texas began creating bits in 1986. Jim grew up ranching and pushing yearlings in New Mexico. He had ridden hundreds of horses for work, team roping and showing, in addition to those he started then rehabilitated and sold. As he gained experience, he began to question conventional bridle bits. Because he wasn’t satisfied with how his horses reacted to conventional bridle bits, he started building and experimenting with his own designs.
What he discovered was that tongue pressure, pain in the horse’s mouth along with inconsistencies in rider’s hands, will trigger an array of instinctive protection responses. When these instincts kick in, the horse stops thinking and starts reacting. Reacting to pain instead of relating to cues can make for a bad day’s ride, and over time creates bad habits that inhibit the horse’s natural athletic ability.
After years of making bits for professional horsemen and horsewomen in the performance arena, Jim has expanded his line to include bits ideal for ropers and barrel racers. His line includes non-palate pressure and palate pressure mouthpieces, in both in slider and fixed shanks, as well as rope gag training bridles. Manufacturing Jim Edwards Bits is a family affair, and includes his wife Elaine and son Austin. All bits are produced in their small shop next to the family home in Texas. Jim’s bits can be found at select equine events, where the Edwards’ have sample bits to test ride before you buy.
Jim has spent much of his life gaining an understanding of how a horse thinks. His dedication to improving communication and horsemanship has shaped his bits into what they are today. Many world champion reiners, cutters, and pleasure horse riders have trained and shown in Jim Edwards bits.
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