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littrella 03-16-2013 10:21 AM

Quit our lesson program
The instructor that my son has been riding with only has 2 horses of her own. All the other horses she uses are owned by boarders. Over the last few months, all of the beginer safe horses have been sold. There's only 1 left that I feel is right for my son. That horse happens to be owned by the child that my son was taking lessons with. The horse she wanted him to ride 2 weeks ago is dangerous (IMO) on the ground. When we got him out, he freaked out about being taken away from his buddies. He knocked my son over by swinging around. When I steped in to try & settle him down, he was pawing so bad he almost nailed me twice. I told our instructor that I wanted to change times so my son could have the beginer horse each time. Yesterday, I got ahold of her to confirm that we were still on for lessons (we've all be fighting stomach flu). She let me know that she had 3 other kids joining us & that my son would be riding the same horse that she wanted him on 2 weeks ago. I told her, NO, not happening. He's only 8 & does not have the skills to handle that horse. She told me that there's nothing wrong with that horse other than he's "nervous" during tack up & told me my other options were a horse that spooks over nothing & is hard to slow down or the shire. I am not about to put my child on a horse that is far above his level. Yes, I understand that he needs to learn, but I'm not about to set him up to get hurt either. I told her that while I respect her opnion, we would not be returning due to the lack of beginer level horses. So now the search begins for a new instructor. Wish me luck!

cebee 03-16-2013 10:35 AM

Im with you! You do not need your son getting hurt, or developing a life long fear of horses!! SOunds like your trainer is more interested in her bottom line than the individual needs of the child. Stick to your guns! Good luck!

hemms 03-16-2013 10:58 AM

Good for you for being assertive on your child's behalf! Too many times, we get caught up in what is polite and proper.
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AnalisaParalyzer 03-16-2013 11:03 AM

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sounds like the trainer needs to look for a new day job too. Being a trainer means caring about your clients. if your son were my student, and all the suitable horses had been sold, it would have been me telling you i didnt have anything he could handle, and i'd be looking for a pony he could handle. Its bad or business to have somebody get hurt because you couldnt match them up correctly with a horse their level.

good on you for ditching!

Mochachino 03-16-2013 11:19 AM

Yes I've seen where the bottom line of $ what mattered. Good lesson horses that are well schooled and safe are hard to find. I've seen where anything you can put a saddle on is called a lesson horse, and where none of the horses ever get some schooling on them. I've seen things that have shocked me and made me cringe. Good for you for voicing your opinion and sticking with it. Many beginner people would listen to the instructor and go with what they are saying. I wish more people would think for themelves and realize that the $ is what counts. Not all instructors are like this but I have seen it. Anything for the $.

bsms 03-16-2013 11:32 AM

My youngest was told by the instructor she had to stop lessons because the instructor lost her only horse that matched my daughter's age & skill. To be honest, the liability issues of mismatching a student and horse ought to keep most instructors from doing it!

See here for some court cases, on both sides, concerning liability releases:

Liability Releases

littrella 03-16-2013 11:45 AM

Thanks everybody. I feel bad for her, she's young. I like the way she teaches but my concen is for my son, not her bottom line. If she's going to make a name for herself, she's going to have to invest in better horses. I knew it was time to leave when my son said he'd rather not go.

MHFoundation Quarters 03-16-2013 12:26 PM

Good for you. Any instructor worth their salt that teaches beginners should have a string of novice friendly mounts. Takes some gall to put an 8 yo kid on a horse like those mentioned. Maybe your leaving will be a wake up call for her. Will keep my fingers crossed you find a great instructor with the right horses for your kiddo. If you were in my neck of the woods, I'd say come on over, I have 8 kid friendlies here.

littrella 03-17-2013 05:50 PM

Well, Hunter had a trial lesson this afternoon at a different barn. The instructor like what he knew, very impressed by his soft, quite hands. But she was also shocked by the things he didn't know. I like the way she handled the lesson & the way she taught him. I can't tell you how many times she said, "we do this, (insert what ever) because we need to be safe".

Casey02 03-17-2013 05:57 PM

Good for you, I hope everything goes well at your new barn. And im glad you talked to the old instructor and told her why you were not returning. A lesson should be fun and should be on a horse that your son can comfortable handly by himself. I don't care if the horse is 30.

And good for your son to still want to be riding after being knock over by the other horse!

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