Dressage barn - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 28 Old 07-29-2013, 06:02 PM Thread Starter
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Dressage barn

I'm still in the process of looking for a barn I can call home since my 10+ years hiatus. I wasn't very good back then, I took group lessons for 1-2 years, I can't even remember, and I don't remember anything, other than heels down and maybe posting trots.

I liked the barn where I took my first few lessons, but my trainer got into a horse accident and they only have one English trainer and schedule is hard to fit in. I like this barn because it is cheap, $60/hr, and you can go in 15 min early to tack, and they will show you how to do it if you're not confident and this doesn't count towards my lesson time.

This other barn, the instructor is amazing. She is very detail oriented, taught me lots stuff about horsemanship, much better than my previous trainer, but the problems are
1: they count all this into my lesson time, so she spent like half an hour doing this, leading the horse out , how things work there, saddling etc, and I prob rode about 15 minutes... Their lesson is only 45 minutes long,

2 I am not sure I like dressage at this point yet, I would like to continue with hunter jumper since I really would like to jump.

This place is $65/45 min

I do realize the advantage of learning dressage, I felt it was tedious but so useful!! However, the barn does not teach any jumping, and I really don't like the saddling eating so much into my saddle time.
What do you guys think?
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post #2 of 28 Old 07-29-2013, 06:07 PM
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The first location sounds much better! I have never heard of anyone charging you for tack up time as part of your lesson. I don't want to sound rude, but it is so dishonest to me! I would definitely head over to that first location. Sounds like a much better learning environment.
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post #3 of 28 Old 07-29-2013, 06:12 PM
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Ehh.. I'm withdrawing my opinion. Kenda is right..

"Strength is the ability to use a muscle without tension"

Last edited by Skyseternalangel; 07-29-2013 at 06:19 PM.
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post #4 of 28 Old 07-29-2013, 06:17 PM
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I disagree about it being dishonest. Your taking the instructor's time and your learning something important about horsemanship. Also, once you get the hang of it, I'm sure you'll be able to get in early and tack up and then start your lesson in the saddle on time. I would give the second barn another try, particularly since you said that you felt the trainer was actually better then the first barn. Get a solid foundation on the flat and then start looking for someone to help you over fences.
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post #5 of 28 Old 07-29-2013, 06:34 PM
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IMO - and this is just something that I have found personally - if the first trainer is willing to take such risks (ir is ignorant to the risks) that she gets injured in such a way that she cannot work or teach, that to me would be a red flag. I don't get on horses I don't know and the babies always have great groundwork. I view myself as too valuable to take sketchy risks and if I am uncomfortable I am at a training facility with folks who are very capable horse people - and I am in contact with my coach - always I will ask for help before taking a big risk.
To me the most major part of horsemanship is safety and teaching safe behavior - realize your limits and do not exceed them without professional guidance. And this goes for trainers and instructors with client horses and students as well!! Safe behavior is paramount in any situation.

For $65 to be able to learn from someone about detail oriented horsemanship and SAFETY, is far more valuable than riding at a barn with people unaware of their limits and the dangers which exist around horses, IMO.
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post #6 of 28 Old 07-29-2013, 06:40 PM Thread Starter
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Don't get me wrong, I love both barns.

The first barn (cheaper one) does teach about proper way to tack. However, when I was tacking ( 2nd barn asked that the student needs to be able to tack a horse up to their standard and be approved before they can lead the horse and tack before lesson, and yes, they do allow that)

I learned how to tack from barn 1, the trainer was very young, but she was very very good, but there are things that she didn't tell me, where I should be standing when I am grooming the horse,

When I was demonstrating what I know for barn#2, I swear I was deadly frightened, everything I do, she said can get me kicked should the horse decide to kick or spooked. I never used a cross tie before, so when my first barn tack up the horse with straight tie, I always have to walk behind the horse, I keep a small distance and touch his butt along the way, but barn #2 said if I were to walk behind, I must stay very close or far enough so he won't kick me, this was never pointed out to me at barn #1, but it could be common sense that I lack??

I may have to suck it up and just take lessons at barn2 to learn better horsemanship here.

She also mentioned that I may have to be on lunge line for 3-6 months?! Granted I don't have a lot of experience, but she said for an absolute beginner, they are on lunge line for a year.. Is this the norm???
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post #7 of 28 Old 07-29-2013, 06:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fayewokf View Post
Don't get me wrong, I love both barns.

The first barn (cheaper one) does teach about proper way to tack. However, when I was tacking ( 2nd barn asked that the student needs to be able to tack a horse up to their standard and be approved before they can lead the horse and tack before lesson, and yes, they do allow that)

I learned how to tack from barn 1, the trainer was very young, but she was very very good, but there are things that she didn't tell me, where I should be standing when I am grooming the horse,

When I was demonstrating what I know for barn#2, I swear I was deadly frightened, everything I do, she said can get me kicked should the horse decide to kick or spooked. I never used a cross tie before, so when my first barn tack up the horse with straight tie, I always have to walk behind the horse, I keep a small distance and touch his butt along the way, but barn #2 said if I were to walk behind, I must stay very close or far enough so he won't kick me, this was never pointed out to me at barn #1, but it could be common sense that I lack??

I may have to suck it up and just take lessons at barn2 to learn better horsemanship here.

She also mentioned that I may have to be on lunge line for 3-6 months?! Granted I don't have a lot of experience, but she said for an absolute beginner, they are on lunge line for a year.. Is this the norm???
Well it's not, but it should be!!! SRS (Spanish Riding School) puts all their riders on a lunge line for even longer.

To become a good rider the #1 thing to learn is to have a good seat and independent control of all your limbs while on horse back. Once you have developed a good seat, the rest of your riding will become easy!
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post #8 of 28 Old 07-29-2013, 06:49 PM
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I wish somebody had the time and patience to put me on a lunge line for 3 months! Particularly if that someone took away my reins and stirrups. Excellent way to learn to balance from your seat and not rely on hands for balance, etc.
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post #9 of 28 Old 07-30-2013, 08:51 AM
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I'd pay a lot more than $65/45 mins for someone to have started me that way. When I started, I got about the same as what you describe the first barn as, and I was constantly getting dumped and hurt due to stupid things that were extremely avoidable had I known.

Personally, I would find the second barn (higher cost barn) a bit tedious as a beginner... however, now that I'm more experienced I wish I had started at the more detailed place first. I would've had 2-3years of solid basics instead of needing to undo 2-3 years of bad habits.

I would talk to the second barn about the amount of time being eaten up by tacking up. Ask how long the average student takes before they are cleared to tack up on their own. Ask them if once they feel you are safe around the horse that they only charge you for time it takes them to check saddle/tack placement/fit.
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post #10 of 28 Old 07-30-2013, 09:01 AM
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Barn two.

You are paying to learn.

I worked as a groom, and the kids turned up to ride after I had tacked their horses up for them.

One of these kids then had a pony bought for them. I have never found anything less amusing in my life. The kid was then double barrelled by this 'safe' horse and hospitalised for three months.

Learn EVERYTHING you can on the floor. Being over protective and scaring the bejeebus out of you is right. That is an 800kg animal.. flight animal.. that in most circumstances will look after itself first.

Think of it like this; the education you take away from barn one will stick with you for life. As you ground skills develop and your horsemanship develops, you should get to spend more time in the saddle.

I wish a lot more barns were like this, to be honest :)

Barn 2 for sure.

I miss lunge lessons :(
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