How to Hold the 2 Rein

Using the 2 Rein, also called Double Rein, is a time proven training method to transition a young horse from a hackamore to straight up in the bridle.

Incorporating the 2 Rein into your training program will keep your horse’s mouth light, allow your horse time to learn to carry the bit, and help maintain your horse’s confidence throughout the bitting process.

Today we’re visiting with professional horse trainer, NRCHA and AQHA judge, and NRCHA Open Bridle Horse World Champion Bozo Rogers to learn about training and showing in the 2 rein. In the video Bozo also shows us one of several ways to hold the mecate and romal reins together correctly.

A 2 Rein Outfit is made up of a small hackamore (bosalita) and a bridle. The mecate (hackamore rein) and the romal reins (bridle reins) are held together in one hand and used together. Since the horse has been trained in the hackamore this set up still allows him to feel the hackamore while he is learning to respond to the bridle. It’s important for the rider to work slowly and consistently to help the horse through the transition from hackamore to bridle.

To hold the reins make a small loop in the mecate and grasp it in your riding hand with your knuckles up. Open your fingers on that hand and run the reins through your open fingers on top of the mecate. Close your hand so the right rein is between your 1st and 2nd fingers and the left rein is between your 3rd and 4th fingers. This gives you a wider area of rein to work with which helps your horse learn how to respond to the bit more easily. It also allows you to use your fingers to guide your horse in either direction.

The small hackamore (bosalita) should be about 3/8 inch in diameter. The mecate should be approximately the same diameter. This hackamore needs to be small to fit under the bridle. The 2 rein bridle must have a bit with a solid mouthpiece, a port and a cricket or roller. The curb must be made of leather with no steel parts touching the horse and the bridle must have romal reins.

The NRCHA, AQHA and other associations have shows that include classes for horses in the 2 rein. Horses can be shown in the 2 rein for 1 year as long as they meet and follow established rules. For more information visit or

To respond correctly to the 2 rein a horse must be completely broke in the hackamore. There shouldn’t be any hard pulling on the bridle reins during 2 rein training or the horse will not stay light in the mouth. A horse that is carefully trained through the snaffle, hackamore, 2 rein and bridle is a horse that can be maneuvered easily to handle just about anything you need him to do. He is a true pleasure to ride!

For quality handmade Hackamores, Bridles and 2 Rein Outfits visit Dennis Moreland Tack. “I use everything I make to train and show my cow horses. My tack fits and functions properly. The quality speaks for itself.” If you need help please give me a call at 817-312-5305 or write at [email protected].

We’re a full line manufacturer of handmade tack and we’re here to help you!

If you liked this article, you may also like How to Hold a Mecate Rein Correctly

Watch the video How to Tie a Hackamore Rein to a Hackamore