World Champion Team Roper Walt Woodard has taught roping schools for riders of all levels for more than 40 years. One thing he’s noticed, over and over again, is a lack of knowledge around proper bitting.
Bits should be based on a number of factors including the horse’s age, temperament, training level, and the rider’s experience level, but Walt would frequently see riders just using whatever bit they had leftover from a previous horse.
That lack of knowledge is what led Walt to create a simple, logical, step-by-step bit system designed to help educate riders and improve performance.
In Western riding, snaffle bits are most often meant for a young horse, or a horse that’s just beginning training. They’re simply meant to get a horse used to following its nose as its head is being guided.
The two styles of snaffle bit are very similar, though D-rings distribute the pressure evenly, while O-rings gives a bit more of a sharp feel on the corners.