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Dr. Cook Bitless Beta Headstall

SKU: KW19505

Availability: In stock

From: $89.95

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PHS Saddlery

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Beta headstalls are made of a synthetic material that combines the strength of nylon with the easy care of vinyl. Beta is particularly popular with trail and endurance riders, since the material requires no maintenance and can be subjected to virtually any conditions without being affected. Beta is a leather-like synthetic composed of a nylon core with a vinyl coating. It is impervious to dirt and sweat, and will give you years of use with no maintenance required.  The material stays supple in freezing weather and doesn't dry out or get brittle with age.  Beta is durable and easy to clean - just dunk in a bucket of water, swish around and hang to dry.  It has a slightly grainy surface and low-sheen surface, which gives it a leather-like appearance. Beta is a little heavier than nylon.

Benefits of the bitless design:

  • kinder control (no metal in the mouth)
  • safety and security (better brakes, no grabbing the bit and running)
  • poll pressure, not poll flexion
  • more oxygen and energy (clears the airway and prevents fighting the bit)
  • liberates the neck (no leaning on the bit)
  • increases concentration
  • improves balance
  • no need for tongue ties
  • prevents headshaking (caused by neuralgia from a bit)

Bridle only. Reins sold separately.

Additional Info

Additional Info

Manufacturer PHS Saddlery
Extended Description

Although the Dr. Cook Bitless Bridle® is indisputably a bitless bridle it bears no other resemblance to the pre-existing and traditional bitless bridles, i.e., the hackamores, bosals, and sidepulls. In common with all bitted bridles, the traditional bitless bridles are pain-based in their mechanism. The Dr. Cook Bitless Bridle® is the only bridle that ensures a pain-free rein aid. It works on an entirely new and different concept compared with all previous bridles. The Bitless Bridle™ by Dr. Cook® provides, as it were, full service communication, whereas the traditional bitless bridles all have limitations in their ability to provide for rider/horse communication. The hackamores and bosals, for example, make some provision for stopping (though with similar inherent problems to the bit method) but are weak on steering, whereas the sidepulls provide for steering but are weak on stopping. Furthermore, whereas The Dr. Cook Bitless Bridle® is applicable to all disciplines, the traditional bitless bridles are not. For a more comprehensive differentiation of The Bitless Bridle™ from the traditional bitless bridles, click here.


The two cross-under straps move freely and independently of each other. Whatever the particular conformation of a horse's jaw, each strap falls naturally where it should and without the built in tension that results if they are locked together. Being themselves relaxed, they exert minimal stress to the skin they lie on and mould themselves comfortably to the contours of the jaw. Being themselves free to move, they automatically adjust to any movements of the jaw and to the constant flux of rein pressure. For these reasons, It is a principle of the design that the cross-under straps should not be united.

STEERING Brief pressure on one rein (yellow arrow) pushes painlessly but persuasively on the opposite half of the head (red arrows). Horses respond better to being pushed painlessly (nudged) with The Bitless Bridle(over a large surface area) than being pulled painfully by a bit (with highly focused pressure on the sensitive tissues of the mouth). Where the head goes the horse follows. Unlike the effect of a bit, that tends to twist a horse's head, the head stays upright and the turn is more natural and physiologically correct. By comparison with either bits or traditional bitless bridles (hackamores, bosals and sidepulls), more effective steering is one of the first benefits that riders notice. The Bitless Bridle™ by Dr. Cook® 'works' with both direct and neck reining.


SLOWING AND STOPPING Brief pressure on both reins or alternate pressure on each rein applies a gentle squeeze to the whole of the head and triggers a 'submit' response. Braking is probably attributable to a combination of the calming effect of a whole-head-hug; to initiation of a balancing reflex at the poll; to the stimulation of areas of special sensitivity behind the ears; and to painless pressure across the bridge of the nose. The "brakes" are more reliable than those provided by the bit. First, bit-induced pain causes many a horse to bolt rather than brake. Secondly, at no time can the horse deprive the rider of all means of communication by gripping the bit between its teeth or under its tongue. Unlike the mechanics of the bit, hackamore, bosal or sidepull, braking is not dependent on pain across the bridge of the nose, nor, like the bit, to poll flexion and obstruction of the airway.  The above method on steering/stopping, using the nudge/hug approach of The Bitless Bridle is used simply as a back-up, if required, to the more important aids provided by body weight, balance and breathing.


Customer Reviews (3)

Great!Review by Phyllis
Product Rating
The Dr Cook Bitless bridle is great for so many reasons! (Posted on 10/20/2017)
Approved by everyoneReview by Cindi
Product Rating
Never had one, but everyone that I know has them, loves them! (Posted on 10/20/2017)
Great bridle!Review by Julie2c
Product Rating
This bridle is well made and works well. I feel better not using a harsh metal bit on my horse. (Posted on 10/20/2017)

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