Designed to Perform - Ergonomic Tack for Horses

Updated August 24, 2023
A chestnut horse with a white blaze wearing an english bridle

Having well-fitting tack is important for your horse’s comfort, performance, and health. Poorly fitted saddles or incorrectly adjusted bridles can cause stress, pressure-points, and issues for your horse as well as not allowing clear communication during your rides. Tack and equipment have come a long way in their development in recent years, with a large focus on ergonomic design. 

What Does Ergonomic Mean?

Ergonomics is an applied science that involves designing and arranging things that people use so that they fit the people who use them. Equine ergonomics takes this approach and applies it to tack so that it can work efficiently with the horse’s anatomy to the benefit of horse and rider. 

Anatomical styles in saddle pads, girths, bridles, halters, and other equipment reduces pressure on tender areas, provides comfort, allows the horse to move more freely, and is ideal for sensitive horses. 

At SmartPak, we’ve created and carry anatomically designed bridles and halters that avoid facial nerves, reduce pressure on the ears and poll, and provide the next level of comfort for your horse. Below are some ergonomic tack options optimized to keep your horse at the top of his game. 

Ergonomic Bridles

Harwich Ergonomic Dressage Bridle

harwich ergonomic bridle by smartpak

The Harwich® Ergonomic Crystal Dressage Bridle takes your horse’s comfort to the next level with anatomic contoured construction to reduce pressure on tender areas, like the poll and ears. It features a padded ergonomic noseband (available without or with a flash) that offers a clean look and comfortable feel. The cheek pieces are designed to keep sensitive arteries clear, while the browband and mono-crown are also padded for maximum comfort.

Horseware Micklem 2 Competition Bridle

horseware micklem ergonomic bridle

Designed to avoid pressure on nerves, poll, and ears, the Horseware Micklem 2 Competition Bridle is constructed to provide optimal comfort. Some bridles can cause pressure on the horse’s facial nerves, however, the Micklem 2 Competition bridle is designed to ease numbness in the lower half of your horse’s head. The bridle minimizes internal mouth damage and reduces breathing restrictions caused by many low fitting dropped nosebands.

Improving upon the original Micklem, this ergonomic bridle features longer bit straps, wider buckles, and softer angles throughout the entire bridle.

Nantucket Ergonomic Bridle

Nantucket ergonomic english bridle for horses by smartpak

Made with high-quality, supple English leather, the Nantucket Ergonomic Bridle features premium craftsmanship perfect for the elite equine athlete. The contoured, padded crownpiece removes pressure from the poll and nuchal ligament without restricting ear movement. The curved browband and anatomic noseband avoid facial nerves and reduce pressure on sensitive areas. The noseband’s design allows for better bit stability, helping you provide clearer aids.

Kavalkade Ergonomic Ivy Bridle

Kavalkade Ergonomic Ivy Bridle

The Kavalkade Ergonomic Ivy Bridle is an excellent choice if you need a removable flash. The flash is connected to the head piece on both sides to reduce poll pressure. The extra wide anatomically shaped padded crown provides extra freedom for your horse’s ears. 

Ergonomic Halter

harwich ergonomic halter by smartpak

Anatomic design is not limited to just bridles! The Harwich® Ergonmoic Halter is softly padded with a shaped noseband, cheek pieces, and contoured crown to avoid pressure on sensitive facial nerves and arteries. The quick clips on both sides of the throat latch allow this to easily double as a grooming halter.

The information provided in the Horsemanship Library is based solely on our SmartPak authors' opinions. SmartPak strongly encourages you to consult your veterinarian or equine professionals regarding specific questions about your horse's health, care, or training. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat or cure any disease or behavior and is purely educational.