The Fuss About Foam

Dressage Different

foam mouthMultiple times in my career I have had riders of other disciplines or people who have limited experience with horses watch a dressage horse being schooled. After watching they expressed dismay at the fact that the horse had foam on his or her lips within the work, stating that it was cruel and evidence of the horse’s discomfort and anxiety. This came as a surprise to me because when I am riding, having a bit of ‘lipstick’ as Trenna Atkins stated, is used by me as one of the markers of a successful ride. That being said, I do understand the aesthetic when viewed without an idea of what is happening ‘behind the bit’ can be alarming. Rabid dogs and poison victims spring to mind, and outside the dressage arena there are not too many instances of ‘happy foaming’.

But within the dressage arena the concept of foam acting as…

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