Friday Fashion Forecast: Devoucoux Cross Country Rubber Reins

Amy Nelson & Hummingbird’s Mendacium. Photo by Xpress Foto.

Do reins REALLY make a difference in your performance?


I am currently campaigning two very enthusiastic event horses, plus two super green ones. If you tend to lose your reins when a sweaty horse’s neck makes them slick, or compete in hot/wet/rainy/humid conditions, or need to maintain control on a bold mount, then these reins are exactly what’s missing in your tack room.

Traditional reins get slick. Amy Nelson & Hummingbird’s Mendacium. Photo by J.McPherson Photography.

What struck me immediately was the thickness of the rubber, and how it never becomes “sticky” in hot weather.  I was extremely hesitant to use rubber reins, as over the years on client bridles I have endured inexpensive rubber reins that appear to develop this uncomfortable sticky film on them. I could not bring myself to even try rubber reins for myself. But I knew something had to be done when I kept having my reins ripped from my fingers by my strong event horses. It’s very unnerving in the middle of a tricky combination to be fumbling with retrieving your reins. The rubber on the Devoucoux Cross Country Rubber Reins has never gotten that “icky” feeling, while providing excellent grip in the most grueling conditions. This year we competed in torrential downpours, 100 degree baking sun, and everything in-between, without once having to worry about a lost rein. They are quite thick (16mm), and the connections are made of a single piece of leather for strength.

Amy Nelson & Hummingbird’s Mendacium
pc: Xpress Photo

The buckles on the Devoucoux Cross Country Rubber Reins are extremely easy to switch from different bridles. I have been able to swap them out from Hummingbird’s River’s bridle to Hummingbird’s Mendacium’s bridle in, say, two minutes, as they have had back-to-back cross country rounds at the same level! The built-in leather rein stop adds extra convenience.

The reins themselves are quite long. This is perfect for drops, and horses with longer necks. The only drawback is when I am galloping my enthusiastic OTTB on cross country, that they are a bit too long and hang down by my foot. This is not a major issue, however, since most of the time when he is listening my reins are a few inches longer in the contact. For a petite horse or pony, or in stadium rounds, you might have to simply knot the end.

Overall, I absolutely love these reins! I will never go back to traditional leather on cross country, and I love the security they give me so much, that I use them for stadium rounds and fox hunting as well.

Amy Nelson & Hummingbird’s River
PC: Derith Vogt

Final Review – out of 4 stars

Cost: $$$
Excitement: *** 3 Stars
Durability: **** 4 Stars
Variety: ** 2 Stars (Devoucoux does offer quality leather reins, hunter rubber reins, etc.)