Beyond the Bit with Mette Larsen


Do More than Simply Choose a Bit

The bit is one of the most important tools of communication you have with your horse, but choosing the right bit can be more art than science. In this course, USDF Bronze and Silver Medalist and accomplished FEI dressage competitor Mette Larsen takes you through a bitting journey that teaches you not only how to select the best bit, but also how different bits function in the mouth, what signs of discomfort to look out for, and how to assess your current bitting knowledge. 

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Assess Your Bit Knowledge

Through a self assessment quiz, Mette will take you through a series of questions designed to test your current bit knowledge, and maybe even suss out some of your preconceived notions about bitting that may be blocking forward progress.

Learn to See Discomfort

Train your eye to see signs of pain, resistance, and tension in your horse when they feel uncomfortable in their mouth. Go through several real time case studies where Mette points out her expert observations. 

Identify Each Puzzle Piece

Just as there is no "one" solution for proper saddle fit, you'll discover how to evaluate a myriad of elements in your horse's proper bit fit, including the shape and size of the tongue, mouth, and head. 

Course Overview

Here are just a few of the many things you'll have access to with this course: 

  • A bit knowledge self-assessment quiz
  • A detailed bitting guide¬†that takes you through bit shapes, types, and functions
  • Several¬†real-time case studies of bitting sessions with Mette Larsen, where she shares her expert observations and assists riders through several bit changes until the best match is found.¬†
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Mette Larsen's Lesson Plan

Let's take stock of your knowledge of bitting! No worries about "passing" or "failing" - this is just to set a baseline of what you know already. 

In this exclusive podcast interview with Caroline Culbertson, Mette Larsen dives into the topic of bitting and how we can view the concept holistically. This podcast can ONLY be heard through this course!

Download your companion guide, full of information from Mette about bit anatomy, fitting, materials, and more!

Meet Diane and "Blue", a coming 7-year-old gelding who was imported from Portugal and has been partnered with Diane for about a year. They are currently working at Third and Fourth level dressage. Diane describes Blue as "soft and kind" and quite curious and accepting of bits. Lately, Diane says, he's been chomping on the bit more often. She expressed a desire to alleviate some poll tightness and head tilt with her bitting choices, as well as ensuring he is comfortable in his mouth.

In this video, we meet Micah and her horse, Lucerne. She has had Lucerne since he was two years old, and he has grown into a big horse doing Third and Fourth Level dressage. He currently is ridden in a modified baucher bit with a single joint, and Micah describes him as getting big and strong when things get difficult, saying she uses the bit somewhat for leverage. A stronger bit will cause him to shut down and his neck to get short. 

This case involves Jenny and her German Riding Pony, Nelly. She was imported about four years ago and was very "high strung and hot" when she first arrived. Jenny describes the mare as pushing her neck against the hand and head-high when she gets to a show, getting hotter and stronger as she goes. Despite some competitive results at Third Level and now exploring Fourth Level training, the nerves and attention tend to get the best of her, prompting Jenny to use a double bridle, which has improved. However, she can still get "hot" and worried, and Jenny is looking for the best alternative to ensure her mare is comfortable and can focus on the work at hand. 

Next up, we'll meet Einar, 10-year-old off-track Thoroughbred currently competing in the sport of eventing. With CCI5* rider Zach Brandt, we meet Einar and learn about his current struggles. He's been ridden in a three-ring snaffle, but Zach describes that while he goes fairly well in the bit, he can get a little short in the neck and does have trouble turning. 

Meet Mette Larsen, your Masterclass Instructor

Mette Larsen, accomplished in both dressage competition and as president of Neue Schule USA, holds USDF Bronze and Silver Medals. Her lifelong devotion to horses began at age seven with her first pony, Autumn, leading to a deep understanding of training and communication in equestrianism. From humble beginnings, Mette's journey evolved, marked by notable achievements with her horse Tigre, earned through Pony Club activities. Introduced to Neue Schule's innovative approach to bit design at a trade show in Germany, she became a certified bit fitter and instructor. Mette is committed to enhancing rider-horse communication through superior tools, aligning her passion with her professional expertise.

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