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Dark Horse 01-22-2012 08:12 PM

Finding the right trainer/instructor
I'm just curious how eveyone goes about finding a trainer/instructor that works well for them. I've been through a few and just can't seem to find the right one that clicks.

I've gone by recommendations, show record, have worked with a woman from the hall of fame in her profession, pleasure/gaited riders, clinicians, you name it.

I'm an easy going person, non-demanding, have realistic goals and would put the time in as suggested. Currently, I'm w/o a horse, finding that I just need a break, mostly from the dishonesty I've found within the equestrian folks in my neck of the woods. I've lost a lot of confidence, mostly due to people, than bad horses. It's been about 8 or 9months since I've thrown a leg over a horse and I miss it. I think I'm ready to just take some lessons, have some fun, gain some confidence and see where it leads me.

I'm at a point where I'm open to wp, dressage...maybe some hunt seat though getting my butt out of the saddle and posting with short irons will be a killer :lol: .

So, how did you all find a trainer that was honest, had your best interest at heart and didn't just string you along??


Skyseternalangel 01-22-2012 08:19 PM

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What experience do you have with riding? I've found usually the good ones are the ones that teach the bio-mechanics of riding or deep seat. In my experience, they haven't pushed me into showing or past my comfort zone. I was known as a horrid student, unteachable, whatever. Now I met my current trainer and she adores me, and we click.

Good luck

Dark Horse 01-22-2012 08:36 PM

Thanks for the reply, Sky. I've had a qh and ridden wp, took some reining and dressage lessons and have also ridden gaited, tw's, paso's and trote y galope horses.

The trainers/instructors that I meet all start out great. They listen to my goals, are insightful and we get along. Argg, the stories I could tell! I'm not looking to enter the olympics..or even show though that was my goal with the tw. The last "trainer" I used was for my paso. She helped me to find a suitable horse..(I've got a bad back) and with a little exposure, this looked to be a good fit. I've known this woman for years and this is the gal that is in the hall of fame, works on movie sets and trains for things like Arabian Knights, so I thought her credentials were good.

Long story short, I paid for HER expertise and got her cowboy son instead even though there was a lot of conversation about who was going to be training my horse and giving me lessons. After 3mnths, the mare no longer allowed her feet to be handled, would not take a bit, wouldn't walk calmly and would only trot/corto (the cowboy didn't know how to ride a paso and let her get strung out and sloppy). When I complained, I was told "sorry, but I can't afford to refund your money even though my son really screwed up your horse. Now, get it off my property".

I honestly thought with credentials like that, and knowing her for such a long time that she'd be more professional than that. I even found out that as part of their "desensitizing" they'd hobbled my mare and put a flank strap on her!

How do you weed these kinds of people out?? It seems I'm a bum magnet and keep finding them...

Skyseternalangel 01-22-2012 08:53 PM

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Find someone that rides well, and ask them who their trainer is.

You just have to watch lessons, listen to gut feelings, and don't let the shiny metal blind you as in, don't be so impressed that you aren't being realistic.

It's a little easier when you have your own horse and people come to you.

Dark Horse 01-22-2012 08:59 PM

I'll give that a shot, thanks. I've also had trainers/instructors that have come to me. In the case I described, I was never blinded by her bling, I've never been a horse groupie, I just thought it gave her more professionalism.

Guess I'll try the hunt and peck. There is a woman in the area who does give good lessons on her horses but the price is steep!

Skyseternalangel 01-22-2012 09:01 PM

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Originally Posted by Dark Horse (Post 1321063)
Guess I'll try the hunt and peck. There is a woman in the area who does give good lessons on her horses but the price is steep!

Maybe you could work something out with her. :)

Dark Horse 01-22-2012 09:07 PM

I wish, LOL!! Maybe I'll give her a shout. If I purchase a group of 4 lessons I think the price drops to $85 a lesson. I've taken group lessons with she and her husband before and learned alot and had fun. Hmmm, I'm glad I got up the nerve to start the thread. Looks like that might work.

trailhorserider 01-22-2012 09:14 PM

Why don't you just ride for fun and forget about "training" for a while? Get back to basics and just enjoy being around horses?

Then after a while I'm sure your heart will lead you to a discipline you will enjoy, hopefully finding a good instructor in the process. But it sounds like you just want to enjoy horses and the humans involved are always a let-down. So maybe just go back to riding for the fun of it would be the way to go?

Skyseternalangel 01-22-2012 09:15 PM

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Wow that is expensive! We do a dollar a minute here, and I thought that was expensive.

Either way time in the saddle is better than nothing and a good trainer is worth an arm and a leg!

waresbear 01-22-2012 09:43 PM

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The way I found my current instructor and by far most effective coach was to watch other peops ride at shows, who was winning? Mostly all from one instructor, and consistently, almost every show I attended, her students were there, beating the pants off me. This was 20 yrs ago, so I asked her if I could be her student, no, sorry, totally booked, check back next month. I did, still booked. Anyways, I had other instructors, other horses, and every so often I would check with that instructor to see if she had openings, no, sorry. Then about 2 years ago, my daughter started riding with her, huh? She told me to call the instructor right away, a few of her students left. I did, she had space for me & my husband and we've been riding with her ever since. I am in total heaven, I have never had instruction like this before and through those years I rode with lots of coaches, with this lady, its different. Every lesson I learn something or improve on something, it's amazing. Keep hunting & good luck.

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