What does your working student do?
I'm a working student at a dressage barn located in Pitt Meadows!
I start at 7:45 and go till whenever I'm finished doing stalls, turning out, feeding, cleaning, and riding. Usually around 3pm!
I get one or two days off a week, sometimes none.
I'm just looking to spruce up the barn, and add some daily chores. I'm looking to become the best working student ever because my dressage coach/owners of the barn are so busy with lessons and whatnot, so I want to make their jobs even easier!
I was wondering what your working students do on a daily basis or every few days that help the barn run more smoothly, and look more professional! If you're a working student, please tell me your daily schedule and whatnot!
Doesn't matter how long your message is or how short it is, I'd love to know everything! :)
Thanks so much,
As a former working student (at least 10yrs ago) I'd say don't overdo it and burn yourself out. It's good to want to help and I recommend it on occasion, but remember, if you do it on a daily basis... it will then be expected of you. I speak from experience.
I was very enthusiastic about my working student positions. My best stable I worked at I was up at 6am, feeding, turnout, mucking. Got in around 8 and ate breakfast, 9:30 I went back out to the barn and tacked up the first horse for my trainer. She hopped on and I got the next horse ready. She finished with the first horse and I untacked, rinsed or bathed, and got next horse ready. A good day I only did 3 or 4. A heavy day was around 6. If there was any free time between horses I was expected to clean tack. Lunch was a quick dash and grab whatever was handy, usually a piece of fruit or yogurt. After the last horse, I finished cleaning up any tack that needed it and then would be set to some other chore or if it was late enough start evening chores. Evening chores were over about 5 or 6pm. Supper came next. Then I was expected to ride for an hour... which included catching and tacking up another horse. I had one day off a week. I learned a lot but I also found out that I worked ten times harder then my predecessor. This wouldn't have bothered me so much except I remember one time saying I was just too tired to ride and my trainer chiding me and telling me how after a full day of work and a lesson, her former working student would go for a run in the evening. I learned from others that the former working student would maybe get three horses ready a day and in between time read books.
Moral of the story... work hard but also work smart.
Now I will admit some people seem to be able to go all day and if you're one of them.. then go for it.
I'm an intern/working student at the moment. In a nutshell, here's what I do on a daily basis.
Start at around 8am, feed and clean stalls. That takes 2-3 hours.
Then ride as much as I can stand. Usually 3-5 horses, with instruction on at least one.
End with evening chores which take half an hour to an hour.
I get one day off a week. Work hours depend on the season, winter is shorter when the temperature is below zero, but it balances out when we work 10 hour days in the summer.
Miscellaneous chores: Bring hay and straw into the barn, fetch horses for farrier, pick poop out of the arenas, take trash to the dumpster, clean lounge (sweep, shake out rugs, do dishes, clean countertops, etc.), wash polos wraps and saddle pads, sweep barn aisles and grooming stalls, mowing, cleaning tack.
That's all I can think of right now!
When I was a working student this was my daily schedule (I worked during summer months):
630am bring horses in from pasture, typically brought 2 in at a time. And remove any sheets or boots on horses.
715am fill feed buckets for dinner meals
730am empty, scrub, and refill water buckets
800am give all horses quick overall check. Check legs for any heat, swelling, or soreness, and check bodies for any marks.
830am wrap legs of horses do not work that day.
900am clean stalls.
1200pm give hay lunch and top off water buckets.
1230pm drag arena to prepair for training.
100pm begin tacking horses that on training list for the day, after workouts get thorough grooming again and put back in stall. While training do a quick 2nd cleaning of stall.
400pm turn horses back out.
500pm rake (crosshatch pattern) and sweep barn aisle, tack room, feed room, and stable area.
600pm feed horses. Horses recieved dinner in paddocks during summer months.
620pm refill feed buckets for morning.
630pm go home.
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