Congratulations to Niki!

Congratulations to Niki of Legacy Horse Farm in Virginia! Niki is the winner of our March tack giveaway for a grooming halter. Legacy has long been a breeding operation for unusual gaited horse breeds, including Tiger Horses, Walkaloosas, Kentucky Mountain Saddle Horses, Paso Finos and Hackneys. Niki is in the process of converting Legacy to a non-profit horse club with emphasis on veterans and children with special needs. Good for you, Niki!

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Want to become our next tack giveaway winner? Enter here: http://twohorsetack.com/tackgiveaway

‘I’m all about functionality, efficiency, and comfort’

We were happy to read this great review from Grace and Quest over on The Horseback Artist blog. Grace tried out our Quick Change Halter Bridle in a striking orange/purple combination, and she loved it!

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The majority of my riding is done out on the trails for hours at a time, so I’m all about functionality, efficiency, and comfort. The Quick Change Halter Bridle offers a lot of functionality since the halter and snap-on headstall can be used separately or together in a variety of configurations.

We were also interested to hear the beta biothane was gentle on Grace’s hands, which is great because she sometimes battles eczema and has found other rein materials can irritate her skin. Glad we could make the ride comfy for you and Quest!

Read the full review at The Horseback Artist

Beta Biothane Can Be ‘Buttery Soft’ For Horses…And Dogs!

“Before the collar and leash arrived, I admit I was somewhat skeptical about what the material would be like. I have zero experience with synthetic tack; Conrad’s other collars have been nylon or leather. As soon as I unwrapped the collar and leash, I thought there had been a mistake. They were soft, flexible, and felt like leather in my hands. I was completely surprised by how much the Beta Biothane seemed like leather!”

Karen and her Dachshund, Conrad, reviewed a bling collar and leash on Karen’s Patently Bay blog. They were new to beta biothane and said they were really surprised by how “buttery soft” the material was!

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Read more here

Indiana Fans: Join Us For A Ride!

Ever wanted to go on a treasure hunt with your horse? If you live in Indiana, we’d like to give you the chance. Two Horse Tack is proud to announce the Two Horse Tango, a Competitive Mounted Orienteering Ride, coming to the Versailles State Park June 10 and 11.

Five and ten plate rides happen both days, and you can enter for a fee of $12 per rider per ride.

More details and contact information for entry here: CMO FLYER

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Alison Bennett, 30, of Comstock Park reads her map to find the next clue along with two other team members as a part of the Michigan Competitive Mounted Orienteering at the Ionia Recreation Area in Ionia. The group rides horseback and uses compasses and maps to discover clues similar to geocaching. (Jessica Scott | The Grand Rapids Press)

Wondering what competitive mounted orienteering is? According to the National Association for Competitive Mounted Orienteering–

Competitive Mounted Orienteering (CMO) is one of the most challenging and exciting equestrian sports – for the competitive as well as family horse rider! CMO is like a mounted treasure hunt, which tests your horsemanship, your map reading ability, and your compass skills – all while having great fun with your horse!

The object of the sport is to ride out as an individual or a team on a prescribed course and find as many of the hidden Objective Stations as you can and get back in the least amount of time, on either a ten station long or 5 station short course.

The long course can be anywhere from around 8 to as long as 25 miles. The terrain depends on the ride manager’s choice of area – but CMO rides are held all over the country from the high forests of Washington State to the rolling hills of Indiana!

Want to learn more? Check out the NACMO’s website here.

OTTB Proud: Meet Our Ambassadors

We love hearing about off-track Thoroughbreds enjoying their new careers, so of course we’re proud to welcome Camile and her OTTB Gentry into our new ambassador program! Camile met Whitehouse Ridge, aka “Gentry” after exercising him for a friend and now shows the 11-year-old in hunter/jumper and dressage.

Camile and Gentry recently got one of our quick change halter bridles to make it easier for them to switch from one part of their training day to the next.

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Q: I remember you said you exercised Gentry for a friend before buying him; what was it about him that made you decide you wanted to work with him yourself?
This first time I had actually met Gentry was on a “field trip” with our 4H team. It was my first year judging and we had traveled out to my current friends place to set up a couple of classes. He was skinny, ugly looking thing that she had been giving time to recoop from his past life. At the time I had no interest in him. It wasn’t until another 2 YEARS later that I went out and visited their place again, this time helping Leeanne’s step daughter (my team captain) with grooming  the ponies. The night before I had found G’s sale ad and fell in love with his movement. (I actually didn’t even know it was the same horse.) This happened to be  the day that somebody was coming and looking at him for  their kid and Leeanne had me work him a little after they left. Fortunately for me, they didn’t like his big movement and declined the sale offer. Later that week, I received a call from her asking if I would like to work him for her, until he sold, for a limited pay. I started working him, with my parents telling me that we weren’t buying the horse, and all of us starting falling for him. He was just so sweet, with his big brown eyes and cowlick of a mane and he always seemed to know what to do even though he was  green. He was so forgiving if you messed up. Before we moved him, mom got on him and she hasn’t ridden in a while, and he took care of her by simply standing there and refusing to move. It was a funny yet kind act. That is what sold us.

Q:What’s your favorite part of Gentry’s personality?
He always tries his best, he gives his whole heart to me. Gentry is just that kind of guy that puts 110% ever time and it makes me  so happy  that I know that he will always try no matter what.

Q:What are your goals for this showing season, and what types of training challenges are you working on?
This year we are focusing on getting his confidence up in the show ring. I plan on showing him in 2ft h/s and eq o/f. Some of our challenges….oh my. Where to begin. You just never seem to be ready for shows. 😄 Headset is defiantly a struggle as well as keeping the true bend and relaxing  through and over the bridle.

Q:What is it about Two Horse Tack products you and Gentry love?
We love the durability and quality we get out of your products. Gentry is a bit of a mud lover, so it is always nice to have  the tack that will stand up to  his messy habits.

Q:How do you anticipate the quick change halter bridle will be helpful in your workouts?
This will help us in our workouts because I go on a lot of trail rides to build his topline and this product will help us stay clean and look good J Plus, they are malleable and soft on his face.

Follow their journey on their Instagram page, https://www.instagram.com/ottb.gentry/

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Jump inside a world from your childhood

So many horse lovers spent days at the barn and evenings curled up with a book about equine adventures. Depending on what era you grew up in, you may have had a few books in the Pony Pals series stacked by your bedside. Did you ever wish you could live in the fictional town where the stories take place?

Apparently you can.

Check out Club Pony Pals, a virtual horse world that’s fully complaint with the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act. Club Pony Pals also does a regular newsletter, which is how we found out about them; they’ll be featuring horse archery in their April edition.

Check it out!

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Beautiful collars that are also stink-proof

“The quality? Well, it was beautifully made and the “bling” made it even prettier. Washable makes it really practical. Boxers get into things, this we know- so should your  dog roll in something, some soap and water and this collar is like NEW again.”

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Daisy and her people over at The Daily Boxer reviewed our bling collar and matching leash. We think it looks great on her, and it’ll stay bright and clean no matter what she puts it through. Read the full review here.

Fraidy Cat Eventing reviews our turnout halter

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“But most importantly – I appreciate the weather-proof aspects of this halter. As I’ve mentioned before, Charlie’s halter hangs out on the pasture gate while the horses are in turnout. So it must be able to withstand all the elements – baking sun or soaking rain. The elements were already beginning to put some wear on Charlie’s nice leather halter, so this was a big priority for me.”

Fraidy Cat Eventing reviewed our two-color turnout halter. Turns out, it looks great on Charlie and he loves it. Find out why here.

 

 

 

Ever wondered what it takes to compete in horse archery? So did we.

Two Horse Tack is proud to announce a partnership with Horse Archery USA, an organization designed to promote the sport of horse archery. In the coming weeks, we’ll offer Horse Archery’s members special deals on our tack, which we feel will be a great fit for a sport that’s rough ‘n’ tumble — just like our products.

Never heard of horse archery? Kim Butler, president of Horse Archery USA, agreed to answer a few of our questions about the sport.

How much riding experience should someone have before they try horse archery? What about archery experience?
You actually don’t need any riding or archery experience to get started!  However, it is definitely easier if you have some sort of horseback riding background.  It’s much easier to teach ARCHERY to a horseback rider, than to teach HORSEBACK RIDING to an archer or inexperienced beginner.  Horseback riding is a skill that takes more time to teach, as there are so many different factors to consider:  the unpredictability of the horse (it’s a 1,500 lb animal that has a mind of its own) the rider’s balance, safety, styles of riding, etc.  Not to downplay archery at all, but you can pretty much get the basics down in a couple of classes and build on your technique from there!

horse archeryAre certain breeds or backgrounds best for mounted archery as far as the horse you choose?
It really depends on who you talk to!  There’s always breeds that people tend to lean towards for different disciplines – such as Warmbloods and Thoroughbreds for hunter/jumper, Quarter Horses for Western pleasure or ranch work, Arabians for endurance, etc.  Many people will suggest purchasing a horse that has certain personality traits that are conducive to mounted archery, such as endurance, a level head, the ability to work off leg and voice commands/reinless riding, brave attitude (not afraid of the bow), and able to canter at a steady pace down the track or around the field several times.  However, I’m finding that people in our region (Southeastern US) are like myself, and prefer to embark on this mounted archery adventure with their OWN horse.  I personally have a Clydesdale/Gypsy Vanner cross gelding that I’ve exposed to everything from competitive trail riding, English/Western styles of riding, driving, and now mounted archery!  He’s still a bit of a chicken when it comes to new things, but he’s coming along nicely!  There’s nothing more rewarding than learning a new sport with your own equine partner.

What is the training/practice process like–do you work on your aim from the ground some of the time, or is that less helpful since you’re on a moving base when mounted?
As far as training goes, there are so many different options!  That’s one of the things that really attracted me to archery in general – you can pretty much practice anywhere, with just about ANYTHING (so long as safety is a first priority).  I, for one, practice in my back yard or pasture with hay bales, soccer balls, extra large stuffed animals… haha!  The gals up in Pennsylvania use a four-wheeler to simulate moving while hitting a target, and I’ve even seen people jumping on trampolines while practicing, running around the target, and my mentor out in Texas suggests rolling old soccer balls and shooting to simulate the moving target!  I’ve been told that “what works on the ground will not always work on the horse, but what works on horseback will usually always work on the ground.”  One of the things that I’ve had to learn is to aim lower than you really think you need to – when you’re aboard a horse, most of the targets are going to be lower to the ground than you are, where as if you’re on the ground, the targets are usually right at eye level.

How many horse archers are there in the U.S., roughly?
It’s really hard to say – if you go by the membership numbers, there’s 100-300 horse archers in the USA.  However, if you count the people that are ACTIVE in the sport, there’s probably only around 100-150.  More people are being exposed to horse archery every day though, especially now that we have certified instructors traveling to teach clinics across the country!  Horse Archery Fever is surely becoming a widespread high-adrenaline extreme sport!

How did you first get into the sport?
I actually came across this sport in an unlikely fashion: I saw a Facebook Ad (yes, all you social media marketers – Facebook Ads DO work!) for a Horseback Archery Beginner’s Clinic and thought it sounded pretty extreme… but awesome!  I didn’t even know the sport actually existed, I thought it archery on horseback was only something you saw in movies and read about in the history books. I had an absolute blast learning archery for the first time, I had never picked up a bow before and we spent 2 hours just going over the basics of archery, safety on the range, and how to alter the basics to work when actually on the horse.  I must say that I learned more about physics and arrow dynamics than I thought possible!

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What do you like most about horse archery?
I love the partnership with my horse – and of course that THWACK! sound when you hit the target! My husband started getting involved with Cowboy Mounted Shooting and I’m not particularly a gun-loving kinda gal.  It’s loud and fast and just not my cup of tea if you know what I mean.  Archery is quiet, controlled, and I think it’s relaxing and exciting all at the same time.  I love the history of horse archery.  I feel like I’ve become part of an ancient tradition in a way – think back to the Mongols, Chengus Kahn, and our own Native Americans of the Great Plains.  It’s just awesome to be a part of something like this!  😉

Meet Our Breeds: Pony of the Americas

We continue our Meet Our Breeds series this week with Max, who is a Pony of the Americas. The Meet Our Breeds series is designed to help you meet the many horses and ponies of different shapes and sizes who model our tack in our online shop.

The Pony of the Americas is one of the relatively few breeds that originated here in the United States. According to the Pony of Americas Club Inc., the POA traces its roots to a Shetland stallion crossed with an Appaloosa/Arab mare. Breeder Les Boomhower was fascinated with the idea of a pony with the spotted pattern of the Appaloosa.

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Here, Max models our turnout halter with camouflage overlay. Starts at just $55

POAs vary in physical appearance, similarly to Appaloosas; they may have a blanket coat pattern or a full-spotted leopard pattern. They also have the mottled skin on their nose characteristic of Appaloosas. POAs range in height from 11.2 hands to 14 hands high. Their physical structure is often akin to a small Quarter Horse with some marks of Arabians.

The POA is known as an excellent children’s and family horse due to its size and temperament. Most of them are used for Western riding disciplines, but are sometimes found in driving harness or under English tack.

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Our halter bridles are great for trail riders, and come in bright colors for added safety. This variety starts at $70.

Max is one of the horses at the Asbury University Equine Center in central Kentucky, where he helps prepare students for careers in the equine industry or for veterinary school. Two Horse Tack appreciates Asbury’s generosity in letting us photograph their horses with our products!