Self-taught barrel racer? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 8 Old 03-12-2014, 09:46 PM Thread Starter
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Self-taught barrel racer?

All I'm wondering is if you think it is possible to be a self-taught barrel racer
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post #2 of 8 Old 03-12-2014, 09:53 PM
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Yes. What I have learned from barrel racing is videos and my own experimenting. Now, my horses aren't good for barrel racing because they are lazy, old, and know how to be a stubborn mule and not let me fix it... haha!

But yes, I think you can be a self taught barrel racer.
If I had a better horse, we would beat my record of 29 seconds ;)
But hey - I do this for fun and 29 seconds is my best and I love it!!

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post #3 of 8 Old 03-12-2014, 10:09 PM
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If you are wanting to learn to use yourself and your horse correctly and wanting to compete competitively no I don't think you can be a self taught barrel racer. There are so many things that you need to teach your horse and your self that need experienced eyes to help you correct. Running barrels wrong can injure you and your horse. There's way more then just running around the cans as fast as you can.
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post #4 of 8 Old 03-12-2014, 10:12 PM
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For competetive and you are serious about it, then yes I agree.
But if you are only doing it for fun - like I do, then I don't think you should worry too much about getting a lesson from someone if you know what I mean.

I've had people comment on my riding to help me - and I do use their advice, but I only do it for fun, so I don't worry about getting a trainer because I jsut go around the barrels andhave a great time!

(actually if you watch me ride, then half the time I am laughing my butt off!)

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post #5 of 8 Old 03-13-2014, 09:14 AM
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Originally Posted by Lexi08 View Post
All I'm wondering is if you think it is possible to be a self-taught barrel racer
I think it depends on your personal goals.

If you are just going to go to little fun shows locally, and you don't care if you place because you're just doing it for fun, then sure: Self-taught is fine.

But if you want to WIN when you compete in barrels, then you need to work with a trainer. While there are lots of books and DVDs available, they cannot replace hands-on training with someone who knows what they are doing.

Yes, there are self-taught barrel racers out there who do win. But if you think about all the mistakes they made during their journey, they could have avoided most of them by learning from someone else who has been there and done that. Why repeat the same mistakes that someone else has already made?

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post #6 of 8 Old 03-13-2014, 11:46 AM
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I'm self taught! I have only done small local shows until I feel experienced enough to try the more expensive, prestigious races. It all depends on how committed you are and if you really want it
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post #7 of 8 Old 03-13-2014, 11:57 AM
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Depends on how fast you want to advance. Just from observation, those who seek help from trainers or even friends advance much more quickly than those trying to do it on their own even with video help. I've watched people struggle on their own for years, then others pass those people within months because they've seemed out help. I'd skip some shows and keep taking lessons, you'll appreciate it so much more when you do start showing.
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post #8 of 8 Old 03-13-2014, 01:19 PM
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I think it depends on the experience level of said rider, personally.

I'm a self taught rider all the way around, haven't gotten a lesson in my life (aside from a walk/trot once in college which was a I don't count that). I can run patterns in the 16s and I've usually been able to get faster times out of certain horses than their normal riders. I can run high 16s/low 17s on a draft cross that I trained years ago.

I think that if the horse knows how to use itself correctly, rollbacks, good stops, leg/seat cues, and rider can do all of the above (and more, just examples), running a barrel pattern isn't too far off. For example, most ranch and reining horses can run a beautiful pattern the first time without ever seeing the pattern if the rider knows how to set the horse up and ask for bend, rate, and turns appropriately.

Granted, lessons are a great thing if it's available to you. I personally just can't see myself spending money on lessons when I could spend it on things that are more important than me. It takes me a year to get my horses loping a pattern perfectly, and then I add speed. You have to have the right horse, right mentality, right experience level, etc to be successful in any discipline..I've found speed events to need that much more than other disciplines though because of how hot a horse can get after a couple flat out runs. I've leased horses that I wouldn't dare putting on patterns because they just don't have the mentality for it and can/have become dangerous if someone does decide to run them.
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barrel racer , barrel racing , barrels , gymkhana , self-taught

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