English faux gags come in all shapes and sizes, which can be overwhelming and confusing. There are many bits out there that provide similar “gag” effects, but are not true gags, we call them Faux Gags.  It is sometimes hard to determine which one is right for your horse, so, today we’re going to break it down.

Below we have compiled a list with pictures of these “faux gags” to help you decode the word of gags versus “faux gags.” (if you want to know more about standard Gags, you can see our previous post here)

General Properties of Faux Gags

Like traditional gags, faux gags aid in lifting your horses head up, however, the cheeks produce varied results and speed of reaction.  Ideally gags help you stay in position and elevate your horse’s head rather than pull you down and out of position.  The bigger the ring the larger amount of “hoist” you get to take their head off the floor.  Also, bigger rings are slower to act and thus work better for horses who tend to  overreact with gags.

Faux Gags (in order of leverage):

  1. 12/5 Inside Loop Full Cheeks with short bit keepers
  2. 12/5 Inside Loop D Rings
  3. 12/5 Inside Loop Loose Rings
  4. Bauchers (also known as Bouche Filet, Hanging Cheek
  5. 2 Rings
  6. 12/5 Inside/Outside Loop
  7. 12/6 (Bevel) Inside Loops
  8. Swivels
  9. 2.5 Rings
  10. 3 Rings
  11. 4 Rings
  12. Gag Curbs (french gags)

12/5 Inside Loops 

Loose Ring Hinged Mouth with 12/5 Loops  12/5 French Loose Ring with Loops 

Full Cheek Dr. Bristol with Loops

These are referred to as “Hunter Gags,” due to the fact the loops are concealed.   These are in the grey area of the USEF rules and fall under Judges discretion, this is of no issue with the Jumpers.  As with all these types of bits, they are predicated on the amount of gag required.

2 Rings & Bauchers

                   French 2 Ring