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Micklem Competition Bridle

Horseware Ireland
- Item #18335

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We're bringing you this product at the lowest price allowed by the manufacturer so you won't find it cheaper anywhere else. This also means we can't apply any further discounts or promotions.

As riders and online shoppers, we know it can be tough to buy a new bridle or pair of boots without trying them on. That's why we moved the fitting room to your living room (or barn)! From breeches to blankets, if you or your horse can try it on, you can return it, free! Just use the pre-paid return label included in your order within 60 days from the purchase date. And of course, please make sure the item is in like-new condition with original packaging (we said 'fitting room', not 'war room'!).

Why We Love This

The Bridle with an Ergonomic Design

The Micklem Competition Bridle by Horseware Ireland is designed to fit the horse's skull and prevent uncomfortable pressure points. This unique shape makes this bridle the most comfortable and effective ever designed. Available in both black and dark havana (brown). Approved for FEI competition.

Favorite Features

  • Ergonomic design to fit the shape of the horse's skull
  • 5/8" Eco-friendly with rubber reins
  • Stainless steel buckles
  • Padding on noseband, browband, and cheek pieces

Sizing It Up

Pony, Cob, Horse, Large Horse


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    94% of customers would recommend this product to a friend!
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    Micklem Competition Bridle is rated 4.473 out of 5 by 222.
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Holy Whole New Horse, Batman!! I feel a little melodramatic actually saying this out loud, but in my 25 years working with horses, I have NEVER had a change--procedure, piece of tack, or adjustment in training of any kind--make a bigger, more obvious, more immediate difference in my horse's happiness and way of going than my fab new Micklem! I recently watched it noticeably change my friend's 2nd level Oldenburg mare's neck, topline, use of her hind legs and even her temperament, so I swallowed my pride over how, umm, "unconventional" (see also "hideodorous") it looked, and I picked up one for myself & my own 2nd level Oldenburg mare. (Besides: with free shipping, what have I got to lose, amiright?!) Then I set off to ride her--without lunging first, you know, to REALLY put it to test ;0) ...HOLY COW!! From the very first ride, she was soooo crazy happy! And willing! And forward without rushing, for the first time since I've had her! And not bracing against me, evading contact behind the vertical, or being heavy in the bridle for even one stride! She has always been anxious and a teeth grinder, despite a custom fitted saddle, adjustments in my riding, teeth floating, chiropractic work and every "orthopedic" tack device imaginable ... Until the Micklem! She took the bit, I buckled the bridle, and at no time did she gnaw to settle in or get fussy to make it fit like we do with those awkward yet smokin' hot jeans that just don't fit quite right but look so dang good ya *haaaave* to wear them, ya know?! Not one chew or clinch. Not one grind, our entire 60 minute ride. She went beautifully and is even happier and more obedient when I lunge her in it.Many people seem to complain about the quality of the leather or the small size of the jaw strap. Actually, the leather isn't too bad and oils up nicely! Especially for the price! I don't like how I've had to reshape it because it was zip-tied to a board, but I LOVE the solid piece over the poll, the double padding in all the right places, and the multiple length bit straps. I think the "small" size of the jaw strap (not the flash type strap over the bit) is likely because people are sizing the cheek pieces too short and making the bit straps too long, so the jaw strap lands in the meatiest part of the face, but I would say it's a matter of proportions: once you get them right, it will fit right! Plus, it is refreshingly simplistic, with stitched-in-place keeper rings, minimized pieces & parts, making it easy to put on & take off & ESPECIALLY easy to clean! I'm already working on crafting a pretty mosaic of beads to stitch to the browband to dress it up for shows. I've gotta say: with how beautifully at peace my mare looks now that she's happy and comfortable, I'd have to say the Micklem is quickly becoming the "prettiest" bridle I've ever owned!
    Date published: 2015-12-07
    Rated 4 out of 5 by from Early Christmas present for Aries I had tried the Micklem bridle out at our local tack shop. My horse seemed to appreciate it, but at the time it was not in my budget. So when I saw it with free shipping, I decided it was time to gift my horse with something special. She has gone thru a lot of changes recently due to a move from a Florida show barn to retirement in the hills of West Virginia. She saw snow for the first time in 16 years yesterday so any little perks I can give her she deserves.
    Date published: 2015-11-30
    Rated 1 out of 5 by from No miracle bridle and fit is difficult This bridle was getting rave reviews from a number of my friends that are using it. All claimed that their horses were going so much better in this bridle than any other bridle. The bridle is difficult to fit with the cheek and chin strap too short and the headstall on the large size.My mare actually went worse in this bridle than she did in her regular bridle. Not sure it is because of the awkward fit across all the components, or because it didn't offer the support she was looking for.I believe the reason many people have big changes in their horses has more to do with how they use their current bridles. I don't crank down my horse's noseband or flash, they are on the loose side, so she doesn't have a lot of pressure on her face. I expect if you have to crank your noseband and flash, you will find your horse likes this bridle better, as their is no noseband or flash to crank down.I am sticking with my old bridle and returned this in just 3 rides. Smartpak is great about returns!
    Date published: 2015-11-29
    Rated 4 out of 5 by from like bridle wish jowl strap could be changed out My mare is Appendix QH with typical QH short head wide jowl so small horse fits great through check and nose band though jowl strap is on small side. Would love to see this strap interchangeable as with bit pieces. Otherwise. Like bridle quite a bit.
    Date published: 2015-11-03
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Love this bridle!!! I bought this bridle for my sensitive, 5 year old hanoverian-- and I LOVE it!!! It stabilizes the bit and he now goes in a 2 way stubben copper French link loose ring- and it's it's flipped to the soft side! He stops on a dime, and is so much easier to check when jumping- after a month in this he even got his automatic lead changes. it provides so much more control and ups the bridle without upping the bit! I highly recommend using a plain loose ring bit with this bridle if possible-- I tried two other bits and the stabilization wasn't fitting probably until I went to a plain loose ring (aka not an elevator bit with it on the loose ring setting- the rings get in the way). GREAT product- even my old school trainer admitted it was an awesome buy! (Though she had to see it ride first haha)
    Date published: 2015-11-03
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Works well for our horse Purchased this bridle for daughters OTTB. We have had him for 10 years. He is a 16.3 hand horse with a medium pony sized face so every bridle and nose band hasn't fit well without modification. He needs a figure 8 or flash noseband for training purposes, so have had to have them cut down to make them work. He needed a new bridle, old one wearing out, decided to try this one because it has the same features as a figure 8 but built to be ergonomic for the horses face. The way the nose piece works and the bit hangers work have helped as well. Nice bridle! Wish I had purchased sooner. I did purchase the cob size and it fits his head perfectly. Unfortunately for us, it comes with cob or medium sized pony reins and they are a bit short for our horses neck length. The reins are beautiful and wish there was some way to purchase reins separately. Deffinately glad we purchased This bridle and will purchase again.
    Date published: 2015-10-31
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from soft leather I bought this bridle about a month ago & did not like the looks, not traditional, but I have to say it looks great on my mare & she loves it, I can't explain the change but extremely positive!!!! now one of my students is getting one......VERRRY happy with my decision to get one & it is obvious so is my horse!!!!!
    Date published: 2015-10-27
    Rated 3 out of 5 by from Nice, but not for my mare I bought this in the hopes my mare would stop some of the annoying post ride "I need to itch my mouth so bad if you won't let me put my face to my legs I will put my legs to my face" Spanish Walk. I thought maybe the bridle was pinching her (it isn't). I thought maybe the bit is too small (it isn't). Even with the ergonomic design and quality materials, my horse still insisted on flailing her legs about as we're trying to cool down. I have come to the conclusion that it's just my horse...I'll be returning the bridle (but not the horse) and going back to my old one.
    Date published: 2015-10-22
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Awesome competition bridle I LOVE my new bridle. The pressure points are more evenly spread out than the typical horse bridle. My 4y/o mare loves it.
    Date published: 2015-10-20
    Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great for fussy horses! I bought this bridle a month ago and my fussy headed mare now is super consistent in the contact. No more head flinging! Love it!
    Date published: 2015-10-14
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great bridle, Great fit! This bridle was lovely to work with straight out of the packaging. The horse size fits my average-sized thoroughbred perfectly and he really goes well in it. I really like that the "flash" can be tightened without a corresponding tightness in the cheek like a figure-eight would do. Also, it's so easy to take on and off - only two buckles!
    Date published: 2015-10-13
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from excellent quality I really liked the whole idea behind the bridle and the leather quality was very nice. However, I ordered the large horse size and it is too small and the reins are way too short. My horse is 17 h Irish Sport Horse, and I am sure I am not the only one this has happened to. So, if only they would make a bigger size I would love it!
    Date published: 2015-10-09
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Love this bridle I bought this bridle a few weeks ago for my hard-to-fit OTTB. Not only is the leather quality great, but he is much happier in this new bridle!
    Date published: 2015-10-07
    Rated 4 out of 5 by from Design simplicity is a plus I needed a new bridle and after reading several reviews decided to give the Micklem a try. I really like the simplicity of the design, and my horse, who can be fussy in the bridle, is more willing to accept contact with this new bridle.I was concerned by reports from other reviewers about the leather quality. While a bit stiff to start, after treating with Flexalan, the leather is soft, but still sturdy, and I can tell it will last for many years.My only issue with the bridle, and what held me back from a 5-star rating, is the reins. They are short, actually too short for me to use.
    Date published: 2015-10-06
    Rated 4 out of 5 by from So far, so good! I've only used the bridle twice so far but it's very well made and my horse seems to like it. Too early to tell if he's greatly improved because of it, but I have high hopes. Lots of reviews say it fits small but my horse is right in between cob/horse-sized, and I went with horse. He's a 15.2h relatively fine-headed QH, and he's right in the middle of the holes
    Date published: 2015-10-05
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from I love the way these fit I have several horses in Mecklen bridles including my FEI competition horses. They fit a variety of head sizes and shapes.
    Date published: 2015-09-30
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excellent Bridle I bought this bridle in black about a month or so ago for my OTTB gelding.He is a headshaker, although he does not fit the classic example of headshaking. Long story short, most of his issues stem from the ears for no apparent reason, but I was hopeful that the all in one padded crown piece along with the design of the bridle might help him. It is not a cure-all but he is definitely more comfortable in this bridle than any other.He has also always had trouble with "on the bit." He is either so outlandishly in front he looks like a giraffe or he is far behind the bit with little to no contact. I was amazed at how much he changed with this bridle. As many people have said, the horses are lighter the first time they are ridden in this, and indeed, he was, but he was also much happier to accept contact. He is a much more pleasurable, forward ride than he was. Again, it is not a cure all, but it may provide a lending hand to horses (or riders) who have a hard time conveying the thoroughness of "on the bit."He has a largish head and I worried based on other reviewers that the straps wouldn't fit, but they do! He is on the third hole from the bottom on the all of the straps. I have tried it on my little pleasure bred paint mare and while it is almost too big, she fits in the top or second to the top holes on all the straps.I have no complaints about the leather quality. For something straight out of the box it is soft and supple with proper sized keepers and comfortable padding. The reins are of fine quality, soft, supple, and not bulky in the hand and I appreciate the included rein stops.If I needed to, I would definitely buy again. I would definitely recommend this bridle to any one, whether it be a first time bridle-buyer or a seasoned veteran looking to add to their collection.
    Date published: 2015-09-29
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Best Purchase to Date I tried one before I bought. The bridle stabilizes the bit and my new horse loves it and has made our training progress rapidly.
    Date published: 2015-09-11
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Working well for a horse that likes to pull on bit
    Date published: 2015-09-08
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Love this bridle I was initially interested in the bridle because of the concept. My trainer switched her fussy school master into a Micklem and she was like a totally different horse, very soft in the contact and happy. After that I was sold. I bought one for my mare who has been like a dream to ride ever since. The leather quality, as mentioned in previous reviews, isn't wonderful but the way this bridle works is.
    Date published: 2015-09-04
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Humane! I have never been a fan of nosebands (especially cranks) or flashes. My instructor and I would war over whether to tighten them, and often I would loosen them just before she got on to school my horse. Finally we both got turned on to the Micklem bridle by a clinician, and I bought two. I'm so happy to provide this relief to my horses, and my instructor says they are going better.
    Date published: 2015-08-29
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Superb Fit & Function at a Great Price! I needed a new bridle, one that fit comfortably on my horse's sensitive poll and cheek area. And I was looking for either a dropped noseband or a figure-8. Found everything in the Miklem! Bonus to have the leather so soft & supple from the beginning! I was a bit wary of ordering the Horse size, as my horse has worn a cob size KL Select bridle, with a cut-down noseband....but that's what the size hart recommended. With the included pony sized bit straps, the Miklem fits perfect, and my horse is comfortable!!!
    Date published: 2015-08-28
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Love this bridle! I've had this bridle for almost a month and it's great! My horse works very well in it and it's comfy for him too. The leather is soft and has held up nicely. I really like the grippy rubber reins that also came with the bridle.
    Date published: 2015-08-21
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from I love this bridle!! I have been using the Micklem bridle on my gelding for over a year and just bought another one for my mare. I think the look is simple and elegant and the design makes so much sense. It is much easier to put on and take off and clean. I had no trouble putting it together but it does take a bit of adjusting to get the nose band and the bit placed where you want them. The reins are rubber but nice and supple.I originally bought the bridle to see if it would make a difference in my gelding constantly fussing with the bit. Turns out that he just can't have a jointed bit but I like this bridle so much that I would not go back to a standard dressage bridle.
    Date published: 2015-08-04
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Just what I was looking for! Have had just about a month. Noticed a real difference the 1st time we rode in this bridle. Morgan mare, refined head, cob size... dressage. No flash and no crank..she loves it and is on the bit... fits her so well... no pressure on the pol or nose... much easier on both of us and it looks beautiful!
    Date published: 2015-07-25
    Rated 3 out of 5 by from Don't know if I can see a difference I really like the idea of this bridle and I really wanted it to work. My make is hard to get supple, can be heavy in the bridle and is tense at the canter (head in the air). I really can't say I could feel a difference, but that doesn't necessarily mean my mare can't. It might just take some more rides. For the price, the leather quality is not good. I've bought a $60 bridle that had better leather quality. The padded part that goes over the poll is good, but the rest if VERY stiff. For size references, I got Cob size and my mare is 1/2 Welsh Cob, 1/2 Arab and it fit on the very last hole for the flash and the throat latch. I thought about sizing up, but there is room to punch a hole if I need to and I didn't want to have an excess of leather everywhere. I am on the fence about keeping it, but I probably will. Also, for jumping, my mare needs a bit that is not compatible with this bridle, so I am only using it for dressage. My trainer said she has seen them come take that for what it is worth.
    Date published: 2015-07-22
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fussy Horse No-More! My horse is a chronic head tosser. Keeping contact was impossible with how he would fuss with his face. He was not the same in his Western bridle, so I assumed it was the bridle that was causing his issues. After several attempts with cheap handmedowns I tried this and I am not looking back. My horse right from the start lowered his head and got right to work. He's been consistently happy and ready for work from day one in this and for less than $200 you can't get any better. This bridle is a lifesaver! One thing that did bother me is that some of the leather started to crack just a few days into ownership. Some leder-balsam fixed that but still. Other than that, pleasant like surprised it works with my Myler bit that has hooks.
    Date published: 2015-07-07
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Works Well I bought this bridle for my new horse on a recommendation from a barn mate. My horse was tossing his head with his regular bridle and seemed uncomfortable. With the first use he was much more comfortable. As a mainly Western horse now doing Dressage he was uncomfortable with the consistent contact. The Micklem did the trick. He moves freely forward, his head tossing has mostly disappeared and his willingness to have contact greatly increased. Like other comments the leather is not the best and it was zip tied to the cardboard header which crunched the leather further. The size is also very strange on the straps but we have made it work.All in all I love this product from a function standpoint.
    Date published: 2015-06-25
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Wow.... what they say is TRUE! I waited before I reviewed this bridle. I wanted to give it time to really see if it made a difference. I'm sold. It made ALL the difference for my very sensitive horse who would not accept and stay on the contact. Now he's steady in the contact and MUCH more happy. THANK YOU MIKLEM!! I'll be buying a black one next year. I read reviews about the leather being stiff and not the best quality. I'm pleased with it considering the price. The instructions to fit it were simple and easy to understand. Overall, this is an excellent value and terrific solution for my sensitive horse.
    Date published: 2015-06-23
    Rated 5 out of 5 by from Nice quality We bought this for our Friesian who has a very sensitive mouth but can still get a little heavy in the front. We are using a really gentle snaffle and she is moving really nicely in this bridle and it's easier to keep her off her forehand.
    Date published: 2015-06-02
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