Cross Ties

Last thought on tying issues and safety –
This may be controversial but hell, half my career at this point is based on controversy so here we go.

I don’t use cross ties. Ever. Firstly: high risk of injury. Horse pulls back, snaps a tie, now you have a flying cross tie. Even if you have some method for them to release, you still have the issue of a flying tie and clip near your face, your horses face, other peoples faces.

Or, horse pulls back and flips over

And for training reasons : there is no clear release in a cross tie. At all times the horse has weight on both sides of the face with no clear feel and direction to go. They can’t move their neck side to side, can’t see well, and can’t turn to investigate things. They are more likely to be anxious, or tune out and put their head weight into the ties. If you are training for lightness and balance, these are not a tool that fits into that program. Also, if your horse is calm and relaxed, why do they need to be restrained with two ties?
If they need to be held still with two ties to get things done, that should be the focus of your work instead.

Yes, you can prepare your horse for cross ties so they stay safe. But it begs the question – why?
If they can stand calmly ground tied, and single tied, why do you need to cross tie? If you’re cross tying to make them stand still, why can’t they stand still?

Just cause that’s how many people do it, or that’s how it’s always been done, doesn’t mean it’s the best way for the horse.

As always – there are many ways to work with a horse, and just because it’s my way doesn’t mean it’s the only way. But here’s my opinion and reason for it.

2 thoughts on “Cross Ties

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