|Level NTR - No Tongue Relief (or very little) :(
I don't use any of the bits pictured above - not even to start horses under saddle. I use a snaffle bit from level FTP/STR or Myler level 2 (pictured below). I also use the MB06 (a wider low port version of the MB04) depending on the horse's disposition. Usually until they understand basic training.
I used to use a D-ring with a copper mouthpiece (like the 2nd last one in the photo above.) I use that bit to demo in my bit lectures of the type of bit that is harsh.
I like a bit with the hooks to have some curb action. It doesn't pinch the corners of the mouth and makes it easier for the horse to understand. You can teach a horse to start to lift their shoulders.
I also use the D-rings with hooks. It gives a bit of curb action ie. the headstall and reins are fixed onto the bit rings. It a good step up after the loose ring (if you use one). The rider is not pulling on the corners of the mouth like you do with a loose ring, single jointed snaffle.
With my opinion and belief expressed in my articles on bit evasion and resistance and tongue pressure vs. tongue relief, I do not use any bits with the single jointed or 3-piece mouthpieces anymore. Myler and other companies do make those mouthpieces only because people still ask for them. And some competitions still require them.
Update: Judy Auble, sales manger for toklat.com on Jan. 24th, 2012 stated that it is her wish to have no one using the level 1 or level MTP/NTR mouthpieces. To have everyone start in a level 2 or level FTP/STR.
|MB04, level 2, level FTP/STR