The Chambon encourages the horse to stretch forwards and downwards promoting freedom of movement through the horse’s back. It works by exerting gentle pressure over the poll and on the bit if the horse raises his head too high. Once the horse stretches, the chambon instantly becomes loose.
The chambon is made up of a shaped head piece which fits under the head piece of the bridle. It is fastened by two small straps –one either side of the horse’s head. There are two rings set on a separate strap through which a cord passes. The cord is attached to the bit rings with a clip at each end.
The cord is fastened to the girth with a webbing strap. The cord should be attached so that it is just taut when the horse is standing with his ears in line with his withers. If the cord is too long, it can simply be shortened by tying a knot in it.
It should not be fitted too tightly. It should be just taut when your horse is standing normally.
If your horse has a very thick muscle under his neck, then have the chambon adjusted so that the underneath muscle is soft. If your horse does not stretch down at first, do not panic. He needs time to develop the correct muscles.
If your horse is very stiff through his back, neck and poll, it could take a few weeks or longer before he will easily stretch downwards.
Look for his back and belly muscles working- this may be all you see at first.
If you feel the cord needs to be shorter, then you could tie a knot in it! Keep your horse at a steady walk or trot. If he goes too fast, he will be too tense to stretch down, so take it slowly and give him a chance to relax