Liberty means freedom or the state of being free. When applied to horses it means to work with the horse that is free without any equipment connecting you and the horse. Instead you must communicate with your horse using your body language.
Bitless means working with a horse not wearing a bit and/or bridle. Bits are usually metal and placed in the horses mouth. There are many reasons to go partially or completely bitless.
Liberty is the true test to determine if a horse is truly connected to you as they have the choice to listen or not. There is no force involved in liberty just you and your equine communicating without tools, words, or touch. You must also use your body language instead of equipment which is arguably more natural to the horse, as horse's do not communicate verbally like people but instead use their bodies to communicate.
There are many reasons people will go bitless, however my reasoning come from the negative physical factors that bits can have. Most people agree, bits can cause pain and simply say if you use a mild bit and soft hands its no big deal, which is mostly true, but through studying I learned bits inhibit horses natural breathing, striding, etc no matter how mild the bit and light the hands. Why not go bitless? If you believe you cannot control you horse without a bit then you are under a false impression that bits give you control, when in fact, no bridle, bit or not, can force a horse to do what your want, pain can often make them comply out of fear, but ultimately training is key, not equipment. The only reason I see to use a bit is if it is required at a show, at which point I think shows should allow any humane bridle bit or bitless, why require bits?
The ILHA is dedicated to promoting the the discipline of liberty training and celebrating liberty horses, trainers, and competitors everywhere. *These words belong to ILHA
World Bitless Association aims to raise the standards of horse training and welfare by promoting training methods based on sound science, promote the worldwide use of modern bitless bridles through its Bitless Ambassadors, and change the rules to allow free choice of bitted or bitless bridles. *These words belong to WBA
The Bitless and Beatiful mission is to promote a more just and humane world for domesticated horses and to restore balance, harmony, and mutual respect for all. *These words belong to Bitless and Beautiful.
Where equines always come first. Natural horse care and bitless riding. *These words belong to Natural Horse World.