Happy Mouth English Loose Ring Bits
The Loose Ring English Equestrian Snaffle is one of the most common types of snaffle cheeks, and generally considered to be the best style of cheek for disciplines requiring sensitive contact through the reins, such as dressage. Because the ring-shaped cheek pieces are attached to the bit by running through holes bored into the ends of the mouthpiece, the mouthpiece to move freely in relation to the rings. This allows the mouthpiece to move more independently with the tongue and jaw movements of the horse, even when the reins are maintaining pressure on the bit. This is generally considered an advantage in disciplines like dressage in that it encourages a relaxed jaw and mobile tongue, but some horses can find this freedom overly stimulating and get too playful with the bit, especially when there is no rein contact helping to stabilize the bit. The rings are also able to swivel freely in a lateral direction, allowing for clear transmission of direct rein aids, which is particularly useful with young horses. Most cheeks used in snaffle bits are able to swivel laterally, but as the name suggests, the loose ring has the least resistance in this respect.