There is always a mixed reaction from people when talking about the use of gadgets to assist in the training of horses. In todays world of ever advancing technologies, research and training techniques there are more gadgets than ever and something that will apply to most training situations. Some people do not like to use them, others dont like to ride without them. Some of the more popular and well known training aids include side reins, the chambon, market harboroughs, de-gogues and the pessoa.
Ideally we would not need training aids to help us with our horses but sadly because our abilities and our horses abilities are rarely perfect so we often opt for a helping hand. In many circumstances, when used correctly, training aids can be of benefit to bot horse and rider, this is not always the case though if they are used irresponsibly or incorrectly, making the dangerous and detrimental. Advantages of the use of relevant training aids can be seen when the horse is guided into e.g. the correct outline or a softer contact. This can prevent the rider from beginning an argument with the horse and only slowing any progress down. In these instances having assistance in getting the horse to perform in the manner required the horse can learn how and will therefore know what is required when asked by their rider.
What is important to remember is that it is always best to ask yourself whether you really need to use the training aid, rather than to use it just to be fashionable. If you are unsure, speak to an experienced horse person and discuss the benefits and possible disadvantages of using them. If you do decide to use one be sure that you know and are shown how to use it properly. Remember, it is possible to re-school successfully without the use of gadgets, and with the use of a little perseverance.