meekie

Split Reins Or Loop Reins?

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I prefer split reins for any type of riding except for when I barrel race. I even use split reins for my warm ups at shows and everything. I don't know why, but they just seem so much easier to work with.

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I 95% of the time trail ride with roper/barrel racer reins. A 7' loop. 10' loop would be waaaayyyy too long. I can't accidently "drop" one rein. I never have to adjust them in my hands.

I use split reins for practice and showing of course.

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I've used both in the past. Currently I'm riding with split reins, it's just my preference. If the bit I use could support slobber straps, I would ride with the mecate set-up.

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I ride with either. I tie my split reins together anyways otherwise i'd be dropping them left and right. I do like having split reins as i have extra to pop my horse with when he is acting like a idiot. Otherwise if i am using roping reins i carry a crop, but i have lots a few crops too.

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My preference: Romel reins with a nice little popper on the end, which I've used a few times to discourage a loose horse from getting any friendlier. Having the romel gives me something to keep in hand while opening gates, or moving things out of the way too. If I ground tie my horse, the reins stay up on her neck instead of falling down like a split rein might do. Like arena reins, there's no loose rein to fall, but the long end is there if you need it. The best of both worlds. One of my riding pals has a leather loop rein on which she punched a hole at the middle and tied on a 2' piece of thick string, like a romel. Handy for the same reasons my romel reins are handy.

Having longer reins allows you to sit upright in your saddle while your horse takes a drink too.

I like split reins too. Instead of ruining the leather by tying them together, I wrap a thick rubber band around them to keep them together for my daughter. Not only does it keep the reins together, the rubber band will break if she gets her reins caught on a branch.

The idea behind using split reins for trail riding is that if, for some reason, one loses one's seat, one might be able to hang on to a rein on the way down to the ground, and thus avoid losing the horse too. Nice idea if one can hang on to the rein! I can't think that fast, and once, after ending up on the ground, there was a split second where I was looking at the rein just out of my reach, my horse stepped back just as I thinking about grabbing the rein, and off she ran! My neighbor saw my horse hauling booty past his place (broken reins dangling, I might add), and he got in his truck to go looking for me. He found me, stomping home, mumbling something about selling my horse for a dollar, to which the resolute bachelor replied, "I wouldn't even give a dollar for a horse. Horses are like women...they're trouble!"

Edited by HorsingRound

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The idea behind using split reins for trail riding is that if, for some reason, one loses one's seat, one might be able to hang on to a rein on the way down to the ground, and thus avoid losing the horse too. Nice idea if one can hang on to the rein!

I pretty much always ride with split reins and this is one of the reasons why. I came off a 3 yr old a couple years ago due to a deer jumping up right in front of my husband's horse and us all doing a 180. I grabbed for saddle horn and missed and next thing I knew I was on the ground. Still had the reins in my hand, but did get rope burn on 5 fingers. This past summer I came off my main horse, again thanks to a deer jumping up beside us, and when I knew I wasn't going to stay on I pulled back and tucked. Kept the one rein, so again no loose horse.

The only time I really ever ride with loop reins is if I'm riding around bareback.

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I like split reins! I like long really heavy leather, the ones you could pull a truck with. I just like the feel of leather and I like the weight, specially on a snaffle, to notify the horse that a request is coming.

Holding on to one rein when coming off is instinct with me now. I came off a LOT when I was younger and absolutely hated having to run the beast down to get back on. Now it gives me time to assess injuries, get my breath back, calm down, imagine what I am going to do to the beast when I get up, discard shooting options, etc.! I guess I would also prefer a stepped on broken rein on a runway horse than a leg through a looped rein and the damage that could inflict.

I also like rommel reins, but I don't like having to unclip one side or lift the reins over the horses head when I want to lead one, so I ide with split reins mostly.

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I always ride with split reins. Mainly for the reason if I fall off, I might be smart enough to remember to grab a rein on the way down. We ride alot of forest service land and I sure wouldn't want to have to track a horse down out there! I criss-cross my reins over the neck, so if I drop one, it still lands on the neck instead of all the way to the ground.

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I like split reins , seems to have more uses than loop riens . I converted about a year ago. I will never go back to loop reins for trails .

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I have ridden with the single reins for years. I hate split reins now, too much hassle.

I had always ridden with split reins, but found myself "using" them when my horse became a jerk, so I took them away from myself! I love the solid piece reins, I can jump off easily and never have a rein stepped on!

Mine are pretty long, plenty of room for my horse to get her head down.

My husband and son ride with split, it's their preference :confused0024:

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Hi-How are you?I'm learning to ride with mecate reins.It's easier for me to deal with one rein.I tried split reins.I can see the reasons for them.The long time cowboy teaching me said that,in the wrong situation,loop reins can cause a wreck.Like,out in the desert,getting too close to a tree and getting a branch between the horse and rein.You have no way to get out of it.After that,it's sure not pretty.I figure whatever is most comfortable and works best for you is the ones to use.As far as coming off the horse with the mecate,if the extra is stuck in your belt loop,hopefully,you have time to grab that.Take care.Brian

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Depends on the horse. If they are pretty well broke and are neck-reining then I use a 7' rolled leather roping reins, younger horses that I'm still plow reining on I prefer a split rien or Mecates set at about an 8' loop.

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[smiley Wavey] howdy, personally myself i prefer split reins. for 1 if i need to get after my horse i have an incentive already accessible. also i like the feel of split reins an if an when i need to step down off my horse i don't have to make extra effort with either unsnappin' or takin' the reins over the head. i'm lazy like that... [bat Eyelashes] when ridin' dependin' on the horse will determine how i hold the reins. it's just personal preference. :winking::happy0203:

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I hate contest reins. I don't do games anymore, nor do I bulldog, goat tie or do anything that requires a continuous rein. I don't like having to put reins over a horse's head either. Even in my Uncles hack string, every Outrider's horse had split reins, but they were not so long that they dragged the ground under the horse's feet if dropped. School horses had split reins with a knot tied in the middle, but the rein drape was long so that, even if the rein was looped over the horn, there was no backwards pull on the bit.

I think continuous reins, when they are too short, are more hazardous than split reins. When they are too short it's easier to lose them than it is a sploit rein. All the horse has to do is poke his nose out and pop them out of your hand. Also, people tend to grip them more firmly and lose all finesse in their rein handling. Hard to turn your horse with a finger when your whole hand is around one rein.

I see a number of people riding with Split reins so long that they drag the ground while they are riding. It's dangerous and to me, not good horsemanship. Your rein length should fit the height of the horse you are using them on. It only takes a pair of scissors to adjust them. [Crazy]

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One other thing I just thought of ,well make that two. I have always used loop reins but since I got this last horse , I had a terrible time loping him ,couldnt figure out why. Someone on one of these pages suggested changing to slit reins , it will help change my seat. Never had this issue before even with barrel reins or roping reins . It made a difference with this gelding , I havent looked into it as to why but I know it improved my riding .

Also; I like the fact that I can wrap one rein around the horn and lead with the other , so much easier if I am off the horse for a while .

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As far as coming off the horse with the mecate,if the extra is stuck in your belt loop,hopefully,you have time to grab that.

When I see people doing this (tucking the lead end of the mecate into their belt) I understand why they are doing it, but it seems so dangerous to me. It may not just come out...one could get really fouled up in the line and end up getting dragged, or worse, have the horse come down on top of the rider and crush them.

A couple of years ago, a very experienced horse trainer in my area was crushed to death when her (very mellow) horse tripped and fell on top of her, and since she had the lead rope attached to her belt, she couldn't jump clear of the falling horse.

Things like this happen quickly, and you may twist as you fall in such a way that a rope tucked into your pocket/belt/chaps/whatever may not come out clean and you get wrapped up in the rope.

I'd rather chase a loose horse.

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I like riding in single rains when doing arena work and split rains for trails. I have used both on trails but like the split rains best for safety sake...

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