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Anatomical headrest: is it better?


At Smart Wag, we believe that a horse's well-being depends on its equipment. The right equipment maximises the horse's comfort and doesn't create rubbing or pressure points.

For a number of years now, bridle and halter headpieces have been offered that are wider and more cut out around the ears. The primary aim is to distribute the pressure exerted on the horse's neck as evenly as possible, and to free up the nerve network and muscles involved in ear mobility.

The role of the occiput

A quick look at the anatomy shows that the headstall rests on the occiput, just in front of the 1st cervical vertebra. This vertebra has a very specific shape for each horse and can create - or not - a prominence, which will therefore influence the possibility of backing the headstall (a suitable headstall is placed two fingers behind the ears).

A question of morphology

On a horse with a pronounced 1st vertebra, the headstall will naturally be blocked at the occiput. However, on a horse with a less pronounced vertebra, the headpiece may move back. This anatomical particularity must therefore be taken into account when choosing the shape of the headpiece, in order to choose a headpiece that leaves the ears free.

Not always a safe bet

However, is the "anatomical" / ergonomic shape always suitable for all horses? The answer is no. As mentioned above, some horses have a much narrower headpiece passage, which makes it difficult to fit certain headpieces (too wide, too straight, etc.). Pressure will therefore not be distributed evenly as desired. What's more, not all 'anatomical' headbands are the same size, and some will suit the morphology of certain horses and ponies, while others will not. An 'anatomical' headstall is therefore no guarantee of compatibility with your horse's anatomy.

 Anatomical headrest from Smart Wag

At Smart Wag we offer a range of different headpieces for our custom bridles and halters, from a straight, slim headpiece on the Exclusive bridlewith headrests that are sometimes thicker in the centre and with more earroom on the sides. le bridon Mont Blanc or the Ador halter.

Bridle, gloss black lacquer

The last word.

The words "ergonomic" and "anatomic" are now common terms used to describe "a headpiece that is wide and notched at ear level". To make the best choice for your headstall and maximise the adaptation of your equipment to your horse, it is advisable to call on the services of a harness specialist (bit fitter/bridle fitter) who will help you test several solutions based on the anatomy and function of your horse.

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