Bits that are good for a sensitive tongue

My horse has a normal port with a sensitive tongue. We are currently using a Myler egg butt with the MB36 mouthpiece and no hooks (Level 2/3). She’s not wanting to take contact, so I’m thinking of trying a French link baucher. She does not like French link or traditional snaffles and she seems to like copper. My instructor worked her on a surcingle with two driving lines and she was curled BTV.

I’m trying to stay budget-conscious in case she doesn’t care for it although if I can first borrow one from a bit bank that she likes, I’m willing to pay for it. Must be dressage legal. Not a lot of dressage where I live so borrowing a bit is not an option.


What do you mean when you say “my horse has a normal port”? To me, a port refers to a curb bit.
I’m afraid I can’t know what a MB36 mouthpiece is, without looking it up - but you said you were in an eggbutt. I’m assuming that’s a snaffle?
If your mare has a sensitive tongue, then I guess you will want to look for bits with a minimum of tongue pressure. You could consult the bit experts at Neue Schule - someone there would likely advise you, and they have a bit rental program that allows you to try one before spending the money…

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Sprenger NovContact is great for horses that are hesitant to take contact. My mare preferred the single jointed version. You can frequently find them on eBay much cheaper than the new price.

Mylers are mostly pretty thin, the Novocontact is flattened so there’s more surface area across the tongue and bars.


Port is the term the equine dentist used, I believe he meant the shape of the roof of her mouth.

This is her current bit

If the mouth is in good health, I have had good luck with the Sprenger novocontact, or Sprenger dynamic RS. Also the Nathe Mullen mouth. Sometimes different nose bands work also. It takes some experimenting with bits/nosebands/bridles and position and what combination your horse likes. They are all different.


This video is helpful too:


I ride her in an Eponia bridle with the wide noseband and crank. No flash.

I have very good luck with the dynamic RS single joint on horses with sensitive tongues.

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I have an OTTB with a large tongue. He’s now in a Trust Inno Sense Mullen mouth with a port and eggbutt cheeks. I also bought the Bombers happy tongue Mullen mouth with eggbutt cheeks but rein control is good with the rubber mouthpiece bit so I haven’t used the Bombers yet.

It has made a huge difference for him. Previously he was in a Happy Mouth Mullen mouthpiece and was constantly trying to pull his tongue up. He’s started to actually trust the contact and getting way better at keeping his mouth closed while being ridden.

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I looked at the Bombers but the retailer I was talking with was out of stock of the one I looked at and I ended up with the buying the Myler.

The bomber can be either a huge yes or a huge no. I would try before you buy if you can.

I would also try different nosebands. A flash isn’t just to keep the mouth closed, on some horses it helps stabilize the bit and they prefer to go in one.

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I’ve not used a flash on her, this is my first dressage bridle. I’ll give it a try, thank you!

I have a bomber happy tongue loose ring, 140mm. For sale, PM me for price.

@Jealoushe Bernie lost me when he said a mouthpiece was brass when it clearly was not, not knowing the metallurgy of another and just saying it’s discolored, calling a Dr Bristol a french link, and the too-small loose ring snaffle. He sure does have a lot of bits on that table though, haha.

I personally enjoy when he throws the bad bits to the side :joy: but yes, there are a lot of different opinions on what constitutes a good or bad bit. I agree with most of what he has to say at least.


I was personally present when he took a segunda and a triangle-shaped bit out of his clinic-goers-horses mouths and put them in something different. So for that, at least he practices what he preaches.

The horse that went in the segunda turned into a pulling freight train in a plain snaffle, but I don’t think that rider had done enough (or, good enough) flat work with that horse. That was my (largely uneducated) opinion watching them go around. The horse seemed to have no clue what a half halt was, nor adjustability.

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Novocontact…the single joint one, at least. Also the NS turtle tactio, esp w hanging cheeks.

If the Bomber you are looking at is the happy tongue it offended one of my ponies so much that he threw his head down and started bucking after wearing it about 10 mins.

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My arab/warmblood takes a good contact in a Trust eggbutt single joint. He doesn’t have a lot of room in his mouth, so this was a find for us.

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I had good results with the NS demi-anky, my mare transformed from head throwing to taking the contact forward when I changed to this bit. None of the double jointed bits worked for us.

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I’ve filled in Neue Schule’s online questionnaire to see what they have to say. Thank you!

I use a NS Tranz Lozenge bit for a horse who tended to curl and had inconsistent contact. It has made an amazing difference for him. Highly recommend.

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