The worst thing you can do is get a stronger bit, such as a thinner one or one with leverage. A 'strong' horse has not been sensitised enough to respond to the smallest amount of pressure within his mouth, either because he's been started off with harsh hands and too much pressure, he misunderstands the bit's pressure or he is in pain, so he runs faster in an attempt to escape the pressure in his mouth.
Sensitising strong horses to the bit pressure takes time and dedication on the rider's behalf. I've found this method using pressure and release works best:
- When riding, put minimal pressure on your reins.
- If your horse does not respond, or responds in the wrong way such as speeding up, pop him up a gear (canter requires most effort) and allow him to win, but make it your idea that you asked him to go faster.
- Circle him to a trot. Gather collection and ask him to slow again using minimal pressure on your reins.
- If he slows, even just a little bit, release the pressure. This is his reward. However, if he speeds up again, pop him back into canter and repeat step 2 + 3. He will eventually realise that the pressure in his mouth will be released if he slows down.
- A horse will always look for a reason to slow down or do less work. He will eventually figure out that when you pull your reins that is his chance to relax and slow down, so he'll much rather do that than work more than he needs to.
Make the wrong thing hard and the right thing easy! :)
you could keep the snaffle for now and try more work on transitions, poles, gymnastics etc. Try to really gain control on the flat and then continue with full jump courses once you’ve found improvement! My guy is what we call “speed demon” and I had to work my butt off on flatwork and gymnastics to get him right where I wanted. And we’re still in a simple snaffle!
If you give for a leverage bit work on soft hands if you haven't.... Because let's say you get a 10 point leverage bit (probably not gonna happen but still) if you pull back with 5 pounds of force your putting 50 pounds of pressure on your horse!
I think you should maybe try a rambo micklem bridle, it divides the pressure more, but most of the pressure comes in the mouth and on the nose, and that pressure on the nose usually helps alot. I know 3 people at my stable who use a rambo micklem just for that reason.
Well, I like a simple D-Ring, but I am not sure if you need a stronger bit. Maybe work on incorporating trot poles, caveletti's, and halting after jumps to slow him doen. The issue with bit ing up is sooner or later you will need to bit up again, cause his mouth will only get tougher and tougher thr more you pull on it. Maybr work on bending and yielding excersices too. Just a tip. Hopr this helps!🙃